When we got to Dick’s Creek Gap there was a guy that was dropping off several other hikers. AWESOME! So, he gave us a ride the 11 miles to Hiawassee. He dropped us off at the grocery store (Ingles) and we bought some provisions including mole skin, tortillas and a nail clipper.
Our accommodations were the Hiawassee Budget Inn. It was amazing. 2 king sized beds, kitchenette with a 60’s stove and below the sink was an old cooler, a fridge that didn’t work, but lots of room to spread out and a TV. We couldn’t ask for more! It is amazing what feels delux after being on the trail.
We did laundry and because it cost money to dry too, we just hung everything out around the room. We washed our dishes in the sink and aired everything out. There was internet at the hotel, so we used that to check what is going on over Facebook and email. Good times.
Dairy Queen was the choice for supper for 2 reasons: Alison wanted some beef and it wasn’t far to walk. We of course got ice cream as well.
During our zero day we walked to the library and spent 2 hours updating this blog. Boy, it takes a while.
We met up with Reaper at the library and we all hitched to the Blueberry Patch. We got a ride with a Gideon member. How cool! The Blueberry Patch is a hostel that is run by Gary and Lennie Poteat.
They are doing this as a Christian ministry and they are touching countless lives for the Lord by sharing the gospel in subtle ways like praying over breakfast and having a Bible in a prominent place on a table. They are some of the nicest people around and so generous. The 4 of us that were staying there even had a little impromtu Bible study. Cool stuff. We went back into Hiawassee for Daniel’s Steakhouse all you can eat buffet and then hitched back with a guy that wasn’t excited about doing a renovation project on his house. He drove very fast down the mountain road, much faster than the 1.5 mile an hour that we were walking! Reaper almost flew out the back of the pick up.
In the morning the Poteats treated us to an amazing breakfast! Pancakes with homemade blueberry syrup, sausage patties, eggs, hasbrowns, cheese biscuits and beverages. Yumm! The Poteats do this all for a donation. They don’t even ask outright, but leave an envelope on the table after breakfast. Neat people. They also have a couple of goats: Mesha and Schadra, 2 donkeys – glory be and praise be and blueberries all around. They even shuttled us back to the trail head. While we were on our way we came across a place where Clint Eastwood was going to film a movie. A hiker we met later said he had to walk from Hiawassee (11 miles) just to get to the trail head because of blocked traffic. The first few miles of hiking were tough because of full stomachs and every time you come out of a town it’s uphill. YES!!