They missed last year. Sam was in an automobile accident and wasn't able to go. The year before was posted here.
As always, I warn Bob not to send me any pictures from the Pancake Pantry. He knows how much I love their french toast with cinnamon sauce. Does he care? This is how my day began, with these three photos in my inbox ...
I'd pass on the bacon ... but I could scarf the rest of this down in mere minutes!
Sam, you could have prevented these pictures being taken, couldn't you? Or might you have stopped them being sent?
Day 1 - October 1, 2015
Sam along the Appalachian Trail from Newfound Gap to Sweet Heffer Trail. Round trip: 3.5 miles.
View along the trail. Overcast and some rain.
Bob along the trail
Sam on the AT
Bob said they saw this 11 year old Shiba Inu on the trail "with packs on. Too cute!".
Day 2 - October 2, 2015
Is this fair, I ask you? Two days in a row of that luscious Pancake Pantry? Two days sending me these vile pictures? They are two tormentors!
Bob, that smirk is really not very cute!
"Five rainy and cool miles today," Bob said. "Nancy gave me a hooded rain jacket that promptly tore out the left side before we even started the hike. Maybe too many meals at the Pancake Pantry? Sam said I looked homeless."
Sam descending the trail through Arch Rock.
"Alum Bluff Cave. 2.5 miles from the parking area. Under the bluff we stayed dry and ate lunch. High and dry ... otherwise rain all day," Bob said.
"Look closely at the highest peak on the right ("round keyhole") and on the left ("square keyhole")."
"Sam crossing a timber bridge on the Alum Cave Bluff Trail."
Day 3 - October 3, 2015
Getting the day off on the right foot ...
[Note: It is apparently my lot in life to have to see this every day those two are on vacation!]
A rainy day for the guys. These first shots are of the Ownby Cemetry in the Green Briar area. Bob said they hiked "probably less than three miles."
Bob said, "What a wonderful final resting place in the woods."
"Old log house built 1934-1936 by the Smoky Mountain hiking club?" Bob wrote.
"Stream along our hike."
Day 4 - October 4, 2015
Should any decent man (i.e. me) have to put up with this, day after day, four days in a row? Yes, it's the Pancake Pantry ... again!
"Wild turkey in tree"
Zoomed in view of the turkey.
"Foot timber across raging water and boulders about 25 feet below. It bounced as Sam crossed. Robert was not crossing!"
"They re-routed the path apparently two years ago to this much higher and narrower foot timber."
"A tree that a bear has clawed the bark off of."
"Bear claw marks apparent. Look how high they go."
"Ramsey Cascade Trailhead"
"Deer picture. Eyes and ears looking right at the camera if you can find it. Mama deer and her two fawns feeding on vegetation. Also saw some 28 turkey during our various hikes. Four miles total today," Bob said.
Zoomed in view of the deer.
Day 5 - October 5, 2015
Can it be ... yet again? Yes, one final trip to the Pancake Pantry ...
... and that delicious french toast with cinnamon syrup.
And I assume this is Sam's breakfast. It looks like they're both going to have the strength to make it through the day.
So, now the long ride home begins and thus ends this blog.