| | | |

Gary at the Devil’s Den East (Upper Pilot) cairn

Gary at the Devil’s Den East (Upper Pilot) cairn. Copyright © 2021 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

Day Three

Today is supposed to be the hottest day, and my plan is to pack in a few miles to make up for what ended up being a cut-short hike yesterday. I’m going to go down to Long Creek, visit The Falls if I have enough time, and then go up the Pole Hollow Trail, hike almost all the way back to the trailhead (I’ll be just ten minutes away from the car), and then drop down into Pees Hollow and spend the night camped in the open oak woodland near the spring I found yesterday morning. Well, that’s the plan.

I spent last night camped on ‘Ant Hill.’ I was planning on hiking the six miles to the bluffs, but my morning spent exploring and looking for a spring meant I started my hike late. I’d be arriving at the bluffs around 5 p.m. just as it started to get dark. I’d actually decided to push on and had gone past “Ant Hill’ when I decided I’d rather have a more relaxing afternoon, and turned around and went back. It was a good decision. I spent a very pleasant evening watching the stars and listening to the sounds of the woods.

Setting up camp at ‘Ant Hill” I fetched water, and as I climbed up the hill, half a gallon of water in hand, I heard something crashing through the brush at high speed towards me. Three deer, two does and a young-ish buck, ran down one side of the hollow, and up the other passing about twenty feet away from me without slowing down. Obviously, what they say about deer not being able to see blaze orange is true, as I was wearing a vest and a beanie. If I was hunting I could have picked off one of the leading deer easily (too easily?), and the firing line was in a safe direction and over 200 yards from the trail. It was exciting to watch, and it’s not the first time this has happened to me.

Copyright © 2021 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.