The route got a little complicated when we intersected the Beark Creek Loop trail; sometimes it wasn’t readily obvious which way to go as this was a high traffic area with many off shooting, unmarked trails and campgrounds that complicated matters. Still, the map and description were invaluable so we made our way through without any mistakes; just made for even slower going as we had to frequently check the map. One of the highlights of this entire section was passing by the Gennett Poplar tree about half way through. Let me tell you, this is one humungous tree! It was eerily reminiscent of the “Big Tree” in the Sipsey Wilderness Area back home, except I think this one is bigger? Wouldn’t you know it, nobody thought to bring a camera on this section? This was probably the most beautiful section and not a single photo? Ha! Well another reason to come back and visit right? Anyhow we were well into the third watershed; all filled with may creek crossings, when Kathy and Joey appeared ahead of us! This meant we shouldn’t have too much further to go. They gave us the bad news a minute later; the climb out of this last watershed was probably going to be a real bear (they’d come down it), very steep in places. Oh boy, no gradual climb out of here I guess. No matter, we bent our backs to the task and soon we’d climbed out of the final water shed of the section and arrived at Buddy Cove Gap; the last crew stop!
I snapped out of my internal ruminations as I approached the last water crossing on the Pinhoti. Josh snapped one last photo of me and then disappeared up the trail to the terminus. I was now totally alone. I slowly waded across the river (really just a wide stream here and now) and walked up the last bit of trail. Not even a quarter of a mile to go and I broke back into a jog. I could hardly hold my head up as I was getting very emotional. At last I turn a corner and there are all my friends snapping photos. And there it is, the trail sign marking the northern terminus of the Pinhoti Trail. The end of the trail. Holy cow! I can’t believe it! I raise my arms in a “V” for victory then I’m crying! I drop my water bottles on the ground and just stand in front of the sign not believing what I’m seeing. Incredible! I touch the sign and bow my head. I am done. After 152 hours and 48 minutes I am done. I’d averaged 52.6 miles a day over the last 6 1/3 days to get to this spot of ground. I believe my total “trail time” is a bit north of 91 hours, so as you can see, I spend most of the last week OUT THERE. Phew!