This weekend several friends and I went on a quick hike in Providence Canyon State Park in Georgia. The park was only 4.5-5 hours away from Gainesville and had a 7 mile backcountry trail. Our group was originally of 7, but by the time we departed, we were down to 4 plus a pup. When we drove up Saturday morning it continually rained. We kept our fingers crossed that the weather prediction of sleet wouldn't hold true. At the start of our hike, it was a whopping 38 degrees and still rainy. We would not be deterred and decided to hike in 2 miles and make camp.
The rain never let up. It continued throughout the night and into Sunday morning with torrent waves coming and going. We decided over breakfast that we should probably head back the way we came and call it a short hike. Everything was soaked. We packed up very wet tents and gear and headed the two miles back. However, we could never have predicted the surprise we were in for. The creek bed had risen 6 inches to a foot in some places. Of course, our trail was the creek bed. There was no alternative but to walk through the flowing chai colored water. The rain pounded down and we trudged through. We all laughed and rolled with it. It was exciting, refreshing, and just plain fun. I remained relatively dry (so to speak) until the water reached my knees. There's really only so much water prevention Gortex can handle; my boots were probably carrying 5lbs of water. We reached the segment of trail back up out of the creek bed and turned to survey our triumphant path. We all laughed at our orange, clay covered bodies. The hike might have been cut short, but the adventure hadn't.
Unfortunately, there are no pictures of us when we reached the cars. Everything was soaked, including the camera. Naturally, the rain stopped once we got off the trail. Figures. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know my companions and the challenge of hiking in the cold and rain. I also learned just how out of shape I am. I suppose I need to get back into the real gym and get back on the bike. Simply rock climbing twice a week just ain't cuttin' it.