Thursday, March 23, 2017

Two Weeks ... !

Two weeks from today I will be starting my Appalachian Trail (AT) hike.  Time is flying and the anxiety is reaching a boiling frenzy.  I think the anxiety is affecting my writing.  I expected to be posting a lot as the AT approached but I'm not.  Too worried worrying to write I guess.

Preparations are continuing in fits and starts.  An hour here.  A half hour there.  Things are starting to come together.

On Sunday I started setting up the shuttle services I'll need.  The first is transportation from the Atlanta Airport to the town of Dahlonega on the 4th of April.  I'll be spending two nights there.  The small college town is not far from the start of the AT and has an outfitter.

On the 5th of April I will be visiting said outfitter to buy stove fuel and bear spray along with anything else that I may have forgotten.

On the 6th, two weeks from today, I will be picked up by Mama's Taxi and dropped off at Amicalola Falls state park.  This is not the start of the AT but it will be my starting point.  My first hiking day will be the 9 mile (14.5 km) Springer Mountain approach trail.  The trail climbs 1,982 ft (604 m) from the park's visitor's center (where there is a hiker register and a pack scale) to Springer Mountain (the official start of the AT).

This week I am finishing preparing resupply packages (buying boxes, printing inventories, and mailing labels).  I picked up some first aid supplies and toiletries.  There always seems to be something else that I forgot.

I had three doctor's appointments this week as well.  My eyes are fine, my teeth are clean, and the shot I got seems to have eliminated the pain in the elbow I've been fighting for the past nine months or so.

Now all I need is some sleep.  Every time I close my eyes I see checklists and lists of checklists.  My mind fills up with scenarios - both good and bad - and I think I've already hiked half the AT while laying in bed trying to clear my overactive brain.

Lack of good sleep is feeding into my anxiety.  I don't remember every being this anxious before.  I have always had pre-event jitters but this time it cranked up to eleven.  I am really looking forward to finally getting on the trail, into nature, where I can walk off all these nerves.

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