On Feb 8 I joined the Uwharrie Trail team to help cut a section of newly restored Uwharrie Trail. After many years of obscurity and lack of public access, the venerable UT will soon be restored to its former glory. I was happy to be a part of the process on this day. I will continue with this wonderful team to make the UT completion a reality.
Thus encouraged and also eager to visit the area again,
On Feb 15 I returned with the goal of digging out the spring at Camp 7 and performing some gear testing in the slushy conditions. I arrived fairly late in the afternoon, but only had about a 1 mi. hike in to my destination for afternoon and night of camping out. I made it to Camp 7 after about an easy hour of trudging through the slush and thoroughly soaking my boots that unexpectedly leaked! Bad mark on the Merrell Phaser Peaks.
I arrived at the spring and dug out about a foot of muck from the bottom allowing the fresh water to pool nicely for collecting. I hope on my next visit to have time to line the spring with some rocks and maybe widen it out a bit - perhaps even installing a small pipe. Not wanting to stay down in the hollow at Camp 7, I climbed back up the little hill and picked a flat spot on the ridge. I tried to find the “least thawed” spot possible. I cleared the slush away and set my ground sheet and fly atop some really soggy leaves. I did not mind, because this gave me a good opportunity to test some gear.
The night was not so cold, bottoming out about 30F. I slept very well enjoying the winter stillness. The woods were quite beautiful with the snow cover and the sun shining. I enjoyed the way the shadows fell on the forest floor. I tried to get some late night shots with the full moon, but my little camera was not up to the task. I have found that the Big Agnes Fishhook UL 2 fly configuration works great for winter camping. I especially like the extra space where I can stay clear of the walls, sit up, and even store my gear if I need to. I really enjoyed this quick overnight.