Monday, August 8, 2011

Sat&Sun August 6&7, 2011

Saturday and Sunday August 6 and 7, 2011
Overcast and Rain Saturday
Weakley Hollow Sunday

I did a late day reverse circuit on Saturday and a late day short hike to where Brokenback crosses Weakley Hollow where I spent a couple hours at the gurgling stream side reading books on my Kindle and periodically speaking to hikers that went by. 

The springs at Old Rag Shelter and Bartenders Spring are still flowing (but barely).    Old Rag received a light soaking rain Saturday night.    Just enough to form a few small puddles and get the top soil wet but not enough to add much flow to the streams.

Surreal Mist
I made it to the summit on Saturday just in time to see that a pretty good rainstorm was headed my way from the west.  I scurried down the rock scramble on the Ridge Trail arriving at the first false summit just as the rain was starting in earnest and it got too dark to see without a headlamp.   The hike down the Ridge Trail switchbacks was surreal because besides the rain there was a heavy mist of millions of tiny floating water droplets diffusing the light from my headlamp such that I could not see the ground very well.   It was like looking through gauze.   My visual depth perception was way off so I had to concentrate and overrule my visual ques and depend on the touch of my feet against rock, root, or ground.     The mist was so blurring my vision that some roots could just as  easily have been a snake on the trail so I often had to test with my hiking stick before stepping near the root.   It was fascinating trying to develop a walking technique that allowed for both safety and speed.

While Brokenback Run was still flowing it was as low as I have ever seen it.

I saw my little raccoon friend near the slab that looks over Byrds Nest Shelter.   It was walking downhill parrallel to and five feet off the trail.   When she got to within about ten feet of me I gently asked what are you up to at which point in time she stopped and stared at me.    I then shoo'ld her off into the woods.

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