May 7 - Lousy night, better day.
Loud snoring and cold temperatures made for a miserable night. I didn't sleep much and woke chilled. Made a hot breakfast with numb fingers 20 metres from two deer who were having their breakfast. They were totally unafraid.
We set out wearing rain gear. We were hiking in clouds for the first three hours knowing we were missing some amazing views, but we couldn't see more than thirty yards. Too bad because slopes dropped away from the trail at 60+ degree angles and some went straight down! This is definitely a hike at your own risk deal.
After noon was better as we climbed out of the clouds and saw some sun and some views. The hiking was not overly taxing but my feet were feeling it after seven hours which is what it took to reach Tri-Corner Knob shelter at mile 222.4 where we're set up for the night. It's at 5900ft so it will be cold again. I really hope Spring comes soon. These 38F temps in the morning are very unpleasant. We're over the 10% completed mark. I think I'm getting stronger.
One more day in the Smokies. Still no bear sightings and you'd think this is the place to do it as they're protected and unafraid.