After leaving Gooch Gap, I stopped to admire a view. Fatman, a local day hiker who retired to the area from Atlanta 7 years ago, pointed out Horseshoe Ridge (photo above) and Springer Mountain. He said that about 20 days per year, it is clear enough to see as far as Atlanta.
I knew the next stop,Woody Gap, had toilets and garbage cans. I was looking forward to both. Little did I suspect what would also await me.
Trail Magic at Woody Gap!
Two women from Georgia and two from Indiana met on the trail in 1994. They have provided trail magic almost every year since then. When I arrived at Woody Gap, I saw several familiar hikers, enjoying their trail magic. The women provided an abundance of food, including hot dogs, chips, soda, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and more. I didn’t eat any of that. Instead I enjoyed a hard boiled egg, a handful of baby carrots, 2 brownie bites, and several sections of a tangerine.
While I was eating, more people from my night at Gooch Gap Shelter arrived. I was so excited to experience trail magic for the first time. Below is a photo of me and the trail angels.
Day Hikers I Met Before and After Woody Gap
While Michelle and I soaked our feet at Justus Creek (before Gooch Gap), two women arrived with day packs and camp chairs. I thought they were quite plucky carrying chairs on a day hike. Michelle and I later caught up to them and learned they were section hiking the AT as day hikers.
I was delighted to see them the next day at Jarrard Gap, where I was camping, along with Joe, who was out for 2 nights. I was so happy to see them as the hikers with whom I’d spent the last few nights couldn’t camp at Jarrard Gap because they didn’t have bear canisters.
It was so nice to see their familiar faces. Malia and Kris are below. I wish them well on their section hikes!
Trail Magic at Tesnaste Gap
After a long, hot day of hiking, I spent the night at Spaniard Knob Campsite with two women and their extremely well-behaved dogs. The temperature was quite mild and I enjoyed a very good night’s sleep.
Hiking the next day, I was surprised to find trail magic at Tesnaste Gap, provided by King Tut and Rick. King Tut has been doing trail magic for 19 years and Rick for several years. They were just setting up, offering not only a large variety of food, and hot and cold beverages, but also hiking supplies of all kinds. I ate a cream filled, chocolate covered donut and a banana, and topped off my water. I was very appreciative. King Tut and Rick are below.
Trail Ambassadors are volunteers, who provide information to hikers, among other tasks. Some spend nights at shelters and others are out for the day. I had the pleasure to spend a night at Gooch Gap Shelter and Campsite with CJ, who shared useful information about the trail.
I also had the pleasure of meeting Mountain Goat, a Trail Ambassador who volunteers on dayhikes and maintains some of the shelters. The first time we met, we chatted for quite awhile. The second time, she told me there was a water source ahead on the trail, which saved me from making a descent. The third time I met Mountain Goat 3 was in North Carolina! She covers a large territory. Such a treat to meet 3 times! Below she is with another volunteer.
Trail Magic at Deep Gap
It was a cold night at Bly Gap Campsite in North Carolina. Several groups of hikers were doing their best to stay warm. I was happy to see Seth and Lucy arrive before I dove into my tent for warmth. (We had shared a tent pad with me at Gooch Gap).
The next day just happened to be my birthday. What a delight to find trail magic at Deep Gap! It was provided by a woman who had recently hiked the PCT, and her two friends, who drove all the way from Atlanta. I ate grapes, popcorn, watermelon, Oreos, ice cream bar, and Doritos. My appetite had become voracious!
I told all present, as well as several people I met that day on the trail, that it was my birthday. Later, Seth gave me a Snickers bar, which I enjoyed after dinner.
The 100 Mile Point
Albert Mountain marks 100 miles on the AT. It has an early 20th century fire tower on top, which provides a stunning 360 degree view. I was up there with many hiking friends, including Lucy, (Seth had already gone on), Josh, and Mouse Bait. (People are slowly acquiring trail names. I don’t have one yet). Here I am at the fire tower.
The adventure continues.
This website contains affiliate links, which means The Trek may receive a percentage of any product or service you purchase using the links in the articles or advertisements. The buyer pays the same price as they would otherwise, and your purchase helps to support The Trek’s ongoing goal to serve you quality backpacking advice and information. Thanks for your support!
To learn more, please visit the About This Site page.