April 5: Dark and spooky night on blood mountain. The four of us: myself, Joe, Musicman, and Badass spent the night in the pictured “shelter”. There was no door and windows were all gone. We hung our food in the trees since we didn’t have the required bear canisters. As soon as the sun went down the mice went crazy, squeaking and running around. Between the non bear proof doors and the mice, we didn’t sleep much at all. Joe and I woke up at 5 and descended the two miles down the mountain in the dark to beat the storms. We are no holed up again and are confident that we will back on the trail tomorrow morning.

April 4: Much less sketchy shuttle back to woodys gap. Today was as beautiful and easy as yesterday was brutal and hard. But there is a worse storm arriving in the morning. So we hiked 8 miles to the top of blood mountain. We are going to camp up here despite not having the required bear canisters. I half assed hung my food in a tree and we’ll hope for the best. We will bug out at 6am before the weather arrives. Two miles down the mountain is a trading post and hostel at Neely gap. It’s first come first serve and we aim to be there before it opens. We hope to ride out the storm all day tomorrow there. The knee is getting a little gimpy so I hope to get a brace at the trading post. Hopefully I’ll have plenty of time at the hostel to check in. Happy trails.

April 3: we woke up in the rain to break camp — not cool. Our aim was to make it 7 miles to woody gap — a place that intersects a minor highway. As we were traversing a narrow mountain path, the rain turned to a freezing rain thunderstorm. Scary and miserable. We made it to woodys gap in about 5 hours and joined two other hikers huddling under a park map. The storm raged on and about a dozen other hikers came off the trail and joined under the sign. We finally got through to a shuttle driver from the nearby town of Dahlonega.