It finally happened. The secret is out. After 89 years of running a successful decoy, a Freedom of Information request has forced us to acknowledge the true purpose of LeConte Lodge. No, we don't exist to host the finest guests in the Smokies at a legendary hike-in lodge atop Mt. LeConte. Truth is we were established in 1925 as the training base for an ultrasecret zombie defense force.
It seems someone read the Department of Defense has prepared a zombie apocalypse contingency plan and demanded to know our level of emergency preparedness at LeConte Lodge. We must comply with the request. The above photo is the only existing likeness of the previously under-the-radar, elite Zombie Smash 6,593 Force. The 6,593 team owns a perfect battle record, preventing zombie attacks on Mt. LeConte since 1925. Now you can rest easy at night, maybe.
In real news, the Park Service confirmed that Rainbow Falls Trail has been reopened. After the fires about 10 days ago, the trail crew had to do some tree work to allow safe passage on the popular route to LeConte Lodge.
The temperature has moderated Sunday to 44 degrees at lunch. Saturday's high was 37 with a low of 30. The temperature actually warmed up about five degrees overnight. We received 0.16 inches of rain Saturday with a healthy snow shower but no accumulation. So far, most of Sunday has been cloudy with a few filtered glimpses of the sun. We're currently living in a cloud this afternoon.
A few days ago the question was asked about the earliest snowfall on record on Mt. LeConte. Since the late 1970s, the record for earliest recorded snowfall is a dose of flurries on Sept. 27, 1985. A light snow in October is the norm.
In the last couple of days I've enjoyed meeting a dayhiker who is using hikes to LeConte and Pikes Peak as training for a summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the tallest in Africa. We also welcomed a couple of nice guests last night who will be moving to Tanzania soon.
This morning's sunrise proved unique. Thanks to closely sandwiched layers of clouds, I could only see a horizontal, magenta slit slashed across the sky. The color bounced around between the cloud layers. The reddish line above the valley reminded me of some of my old school papers. A celestial English teacher determined that night had become a run-on sentence and demanded change.
Allyson is due to return to the mountain tonight. I'll take leave of High on LeConte duties until June. Thank you all for reading and being so friendly when you come to visit. Zombies, don't tread on LeConte. Happy trails.
Welcome to the official blog of LeConte Lodge. We hope you find the information provided here both helpful and enjoyable. Thank you for visiting the site, and we hope to see you on the mountain!