Ted picked up the box at his food drop and now has a phone! He called last night (Monday) to give this blog update.
Hiked 144 miles so far. Today was one of the toughest days. After I picked up my food drop I climbed a mountain that was 7 miles straight up. Elevation gain was 2900 feet! It took 4 hours to do it, and now at the shelter. The original plan was to stay at the Outfitters at Nantahala, but there are supposed to be heavy rains and 60 MPH winds tomorrow, so he pushed on to the shelter so he’ll be protected. In the 30’s tonight and the weather forecast is for rain Tues. Wed. & snow Th & Fri. He is 3 days away from Fontana Dam & that is the beginning of the Smokies. But that is about the time that they are forecasting the snow. Saw the Smokies yesterday (beautiful sunny day) from another mountain and had a nice view of Clingman’s dome.
There have been road closings from rock slides and he won’t be able to get into any towns, so from Fontana Dam he needs to carry enough food to get through the Smokies!
The In Reach is fixed and will go out in the next food drop box. He will call tonight to discuss how much to send (and where) so he can get through the Smokies OK. He says his pack is heavy but he’d rather have more food to eat! Also, he bought some boot cushioning liners because his feet were getting sore. He’s not seeing many other hikers now. He did see Maggie and TK at Nantahala, and they are in the shelter with him now.
He’s still OK and having a good time, and it’s good to know that he can call.