Boy Scout Troop 93, including my dad and me, hiked eight miles round trip on the Appalachian Trail. When we got to the camp site, we took off our backpacks and hiked one mile to the highest peak in Virginia, Mt. Rogers, at 5,729 feet. (See pictures of Mt. Rogers on Google images and on Flickr.)
Backpacking was hard going up the mountain. My pack weighed about 25 pounds, and I weigh 72, so I was carrying more than one third of my weight. In my pack, I carried a sleeping bag, clothes, and food for our patrol. A patrol is a section of the troop. My dad was carrying a lot more weight in his back pack, about 50 pounds, including our two-person tent and his bigger sleeping bag.
On top of Mt. Rogers, some other hikers and a dog were sitting on rocks and taking pictures. The yellow labrador retriever was very sweet. He licked my face and pawed at me because I had a snack in my pocket, which he wanted me to share with him.
There was no view from the top of Mt. Rogers -- it was tree-covered and very windy there. The trees protected us from the wind. Without them, I would probably have been blown off the mountain.
Back home near Chapel Hill, the temperature was very warm -- in the high seventies -- so we almost did not pack warmly enough for the mountains. I almost forgot my winter coat, which I definitely needed on the mountain.
My dad and I found a good spot away from the high wind to pitch out tent. The other boys pitched their tents slightly higher up the mountain, in the wind, and got colder during the night. Dad and I kept pretty warm. When we woke up, we were shocked to find A BLANKET OF SNOW covering our tent. In April, believe it or not!