15.9 Mile AT Section Hike

Updated: Jun 28

Appalachian Trail Section Hike - 15.9 miles

13 September to 15 September, 2019

Deep Gap, NC to Dicks Creek Gap, GA

SOBO hike. Two people.

Me and my college buddy, Andy, met at Dicks Creek Gap on Friday evening at 7:00pm, where we left our cars and grabbed a shuttle to Deep Gap, NC. The shuttle ride was close to an hour. We pitched our tents in the dark at Deep Gap, which was not a problem. There was a campsite within 50 feet.

A rhododendron tunnel along the trail, on the way to Bly Gap
Bent Oak at Bly Gap

On Saturday we hiked 11.3 miles in total. We made the first 6.8 miles by lunch, resting at Bly Gap, which is where the GA/NC state line is located. This is also the location of one of the well known landmarks on the Appalachian Trail. The bent oak.

The hiking on this day was not very strenuous. Only a few decent uphill climbs. In fact, I became a little frustrated with the number of descents at one point. But really, it was not a big deal. I just prefer uphill rather than a steep downhill.

Water sources were an issue due to drought conditions. There was water at Muskrat Creek Shelter, but some of the other listed springs on our trail maps were dry. We had read reports of aggressive yellow jackets at several locations on this route, but did not encounter any.

Another 4.5 miles after lunch and we reached the shelter at Plumorchard Gap, where we spent the night. This shelter is a good ¼ mile off of the trail, with blue blazes. Rain hit us pretty hard just before we arrived at the shelter. Great timing for us! This made water less of an issue than it might have been. Though we believe the stream at this shelter was already flowing okay.

I decided to camp behind the shelter. I had a brand new tent and had to try it out.

On Sunday, with only 4.6 miles of hiking remaining, we reached our vehicles at Dicks Creek Gap by 10:30am.

The next morning I brewed my coffee in the shelter

I would rate this as a fun weekend section. The next section we hope to do is Dicks Creek to Unicoi Gap, again keeping it to weekend hiking. That section is 16.7 miles. If one wanted to, both of these sections could probably be combined for a full 3 days of hiking.

#backpacking #atsectionhike #sectionhike #appalachiantrail #hiking #camping


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