Yours Truly knew something was up when she didn’t receive pics from Katie until about 11 pm. A tuckered out Buffalo Bob responded to my plea for a write up: 

Sixteen TrailBlazers showed up to tackle what was billed as a "strenuous" hike. Athens to Big Fork trail by Tim Ernst's description had a lot of "ups" listed. However, after 9+ miles we were certain he left out several "ups". 

We trudged over seven mountains and encountered many water crossings. The first climb started just after leaving the vehicles. Some joked that we should turn around and call it a day. By the second climb, that joke seemed more like a good idea. The weather was perfect for this undertaking. We were very lucky to have a cool, cloudy day. We had to use water shoes only once. The creek was wide and the water quite cool and believe it or not, refreshing. 

At the end of the hike, those going to retrieve vehicles left the rest to fend for ourselves. In the cool of the approaching darkness, we built a campfire and toasted some buns. A poll taken around the fire found zero TrailBlazerswanting to place this trail on an annual revisit-list. 

Shani reported on Facebook that it was a long day, and she had no plans to hike this trail again. In response to her post, Ruth Ann, Audrey and Katie were all in her Amen Corner. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Yours Truly was raking and burning leaves on her 21 acres and now realizes that it was a good choice for a knobby-kneed woman! 

When the going gets tough, some ToughBlazers really get going!