This was the most pure run I have done, probably in my lifetime up to now; pure in the sense that there were no interruptions of other people racing, or aid stations, or clocks, or course markings, or expectations… just a trail that has been there for 90+ years, traversed by a countless number of people, marked with simple white blazes that might as well be birch… nowhere else to go but to follow the well-worn path, and the beauty that it entails.
As we went I couldn’t help but be reminded of those I had known of that had a history with the Appalachian Trail, from thru-hikers, to section hikers, to other running buddies that had shared this experience, and to think that their feet had traversed exactly where mine were… in this we shared a wonderful experience without even being together, and I took great joy in knowing that we were sharing in this experience, albeit at differing times in our lives, but we all were there, climbing, descending, suffering.
The tale will stay with me forever, and the experience will soon be replicated, and completed in one haul… but for this write up, I will share the highlights of the trip, and let the pictures (click here) and the imagination fill in the holes… until you decide that it’s time to find out the real story on your own, and take on the Smokies Challenge Adventure Run (SCAR) for yourselves.
This is a run that I highly recommend to everyone out there… the Smokies are freaking amazing, and God reveals himself on every inch of the journey. VAMOS!!!
Salomon Running Pack (the one I won at Stumpjump 50k a looong time ago)
Salomon EXO Shorts
Patagonia SS Top (Thanks R/C)
Day one socks – Balega wool
Day two socks – Smartwool
Hoka Stinson Evo shoes
Oreos, Nutter Butters, and Chips Ahoy cookies
Katahdin water filter pump (freaking genius)
Camelbak Insulated bottles