We arrive at Clingmans Dome around 12 Noon, gear up and begin the half mile walk up to the trail head. A quick chat with a Ranger gave us the anticipated weather for the weekend...wet with a good chance of more wet. Funny thing about asking for the latest weather update...at that point it really didn't matter. Nothing short of a freakish September snow storm was going to stop us from completing our hike. Also, just as we did in our last hike, we obtained our hiking permits (Smokies Hiking Permits) well in advance of our trip.
The plan for our Friday hike is to make it to Icewater Spring Shelter and camp there for the night. Icewater is about 10.5 miles from Clingmans Dome and daylight fades quickly this time of year, so we don't waste much time before hitting the trail.
The weather on Friday was actually nice. No rain and cooler temps. Most of the hike was fairly typical...lots of up and down with plenty of interesting things to see in the woods. I was hiking in front of Kurt most of the day and I probably hit no less than 1,001 silk inch worms that were dangling in the middle of the trail. The picture below is my attempt to capture one of these little critters on camera, but it didn't turn out as well as planned.