NOC (Nantahala Outdoor Center)

Day 13 – Thursday, March 22

I made it into NOC yesterday in time for a late lunch at the Rivers End Restaurant. The cheeseburger, fries and beer went down without any problems.  Later that afternoon, my Mom and Dad drove up from Marietta and joined me for dinner. I think they enjoyed getting to know some fellow hikers and it is very comforting for them to know that I am not alone on my trek. At dinner we were talking with Waldo(trail name),a young guy who has decided to end his attempt of a thru- hike. He is buying a bike instead and riding it back home to Virginia Beach. By the end of dinner my mom got up and gave Waldo a hug and wished him well.  Pretty cool…for my mom.

Since I got to NOC a day early, I’ve decided to go  ahead and take a zero today and rest my old bones after the first 12 days on the trail. I feel like I’m beginning to get my trail legs under me now and I’m very pleased that I have managed to do 146 miles in the first 12 days out of Amicalola Falls.  I’m trying to stay flexible, but I probably won’t take another day off until I reach Erwin, TN around April 7th.

While killing time here today, I was going to check in with the guys at the outfitter store to see if I could borrow a kayak for a while and play around behind the store. I’m going to really miss my kayaking fun this spring and summer so I thought as well try to get some water time in.   It didn’t happen, but I enjoyed playing cards with some other hikers for a while.  One of my fellow hikers (on the trail for his 2nd thru hike) gave me my trail name tonight.  It is “Whitewater“.  I accepted it and think it is a perfect fit for me!

Looking forward to my journey through the Smoky Mountains.

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12 Responses to NOC (Nantahala Outdoor Center)

  1. Rob says:

    Keep it up David! Excited to read about your experience in the Smokies. I go there often and I love it. Thanks for posting updates, I check your website once or twice a day. haha

  2. Lynn Addie says:

    I am dreaming of walking the AT in the future and i am thoroughly enjoying and living through other’s adventures. stay safe

    Lynn

  3. Ann Allender says:

    Hi, David. You don’t know me but I work at St. Joe’s with Jodi. I have been asking her frequently about you and have been following your blogs. I am living vicariously through you as you are living my dream. Good for you. Hope you are enjoying this beautiful weekend. Happy Trails, Whitewater!
    Sincerely, Ann

  4. Mike says:

    David, we (Polly & I) have been following you posts. She works with a young man who graduated with an accounting degree from UA and took 6 months off with a friend to do the AT. I was able to have lunch with him a few weeks ago and discuss what you would be experiencing. Safe travels and we will keep The Silver Bullets iced down for the Welcome Home party. We are rafting the Ocoee in June. We will be thinking about you. Necessity trip in October would be great. Let me know, and I will schedule.

  5. Henry Freeman says:

    David (Whitewater…great trail name!)

    Grady, Deborah, and I are enjoying following your progress along the trail. Your adventure during the lightning storm brought flashbacks (no pun intended) about the hair raising experience that is burned into my memory. Glad you could link up with your parents at NOC. We are sending sunny weather your way! We are looking forward to seeing lots of great pictures.

    Take care,
    Grady, Deborah, and Henry

  6. Gail Gray says:

    Great post Whitewater, I really enjoyed seeing the trail through your eyes as my son, Loner aka Jeff, who is also a kayaker is behind you on the AT Trail about a week or so after you. He left Amicalola on April 7th and reached the NOC on April 17th. I’ll be following your blog for sure, since I can see what he’s experiencing. Love the photo of all the backpacks – were those all AT thru-hikers? May you and Loner will cross paths. I wish I’d thought of driving up from Greenville, SC to meet him there. Glad your parents had the chance. We’ll have to make a trip after he gets home. CarolinaATMom

    • dnlangford says:

      Thanks for the comments and glad you’re enjoying my blog. I hope your son Loner will enjoy his journey as much as I’m enjoying mine! It’s a great experience! Whitewater

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