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I started today by getting up early at the Holiday Inn and having breakfast. I went outside to hitch and within 30 seconds of sticking out my thumb I had a ride. My achilles felt pretty good today but I still thought I should take it easy so I decided to try my first slackpack.
I ended up getting to Unicoi Gap around 8:45am from the shuttle at the hostel. I hiked about 16 miles to get to Dicks Creek Gap and passed the famous "Swag of the Blue Ridge" sign. It was a pretty painful day on my body. My heel was fine all day but then my knee started to hurt like crazy and toward the end of the day I got sharp pains in the arch of my right foot and I could barely put weight on it. Despite the pain, I really enjoyed the hike. I ended up hiking a lot with Peas and later met met Rebel Yell and Genera Burnsides who told me he saw a mother black bear and two cubs climbing a tree earlier today.
Once we arrived at the gap we were offered a ride to the hostel which wasn't far. Once we cleaned up, Peas, Rebel Yell, and I hitched into town. A man offered a ride but said he'd take us a mile from town. Instead he dropped us off at a random parking lot about 3 miles from town. Thankfully the hostel shuttle picked us up on its way into town and we were able to get resupply for four days to take us to Franklin, NC. Tomorrow I'm going to reach the North Carolina border! I think I'll take it slow.