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  1. #1

    Default Worried about thru hikers dropping cold weather gear too early

    I just got back from an 11 day section hike starting at 19E in Tn and ending at Grayson Highlands. Many of the thru hikers had already sent back all their cold weather gear. I am very fearful we are going to have a hypothermia tragedy, the weather has lulled many hikers into a false sense of security, and those mtns can turn on you quick. Just a word of caution dont ship your cold weather gear back too early. I know it can be tempting to drop weight and make miles but not at the cost of your life. cold and wet can kill!

    2-G

  2. #2
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    26 degrees in Bristol, TN last night. I'm sure it was much colder across Roan Mountain and on the trail north. Better to be safe than sorry.

  3. #3
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    It's not a new thing. Seems like every year you hear of some thru just itching to dump the cold weather gear way too early.
    Last edited by Spokes; 04-12-2012 at 16:59.

  4. #4

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    Darwinian, really
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

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    not necessarily. you can get hypothermia with temps in the 50s.

  6. #6
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    I am in sw va now and seen some shivverin hikers in the grocery last nights... wearin shorts.
    I sent a bunch home, but i been on trail since early jan and had a ton... still packin a zero bag.
    Yes... i am not much of a 'hiker' anymore.... more of a long distance camper. Got my thru bagged last year.
    HOME PLACE, here I come.

  7. #7
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    They are probably focusing on real dangers, such as bears and murderers, rather than minor inconveniences like hypothermia and ticks.

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    I never get when some review others gear list ,they say leave the gloves at home.Gloves can be used any time of year,even on a cool summer night.
    I hike for hikin'

  9. #9
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    ain't no biggie. nobody has died in a while

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    ain't no biggie. nobody has died in a while
    It's just frostbite. trademark
    I hike for hikin'

  11. #11

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    May 21st, 2002, snow just outside of Pearisburg, VA.

  12. #12

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    Years ago when hiking into Damascus in late April we ran into a thruhiker who had a large external frame pack, we hiked along with him for awhile and he obviously was running out of "steam" his only goal was Mount Roger Outfittters. We saw him a few hours later at MRO as he walked in the door, dumped his pack and announced that he needed lighter gear. They handed him the key to the hostel across the street and told him to take a break and come back after he got cleaned up. The next time we saw him was at the shelter just south of Mount Rogers, he had all the latest go light gear and was real happy. That night a front came through and it was no more than 40 degrees and drizzle in the AM. He was standing around shivering and he mentioned that he wished he had his old gear as he had every article of clothing on and had no way of getting warmer. We had the option of going elsewhere as the forecast sucked for that day so we went north and did a key swap hike south of Partnership Shelter. The next day it cleared and we ran into him again, he had climbed up Mt Rogers, barely made it to the shelter and bascially didnt sleep all night as he was so cold. He said he wasnt the only one that had sent home cold weather gear in Damascus.

    I guess a lot of folks must like to learn by doing.

  13. #13

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    The folks at Mt Rogers Outfitters are top notch, and are very aware of cold weather hazards. I am sure the guy who dropped his pack, made some decisions to go lighter and cheaper and forsake warmth which is not always mutually exclusive. As I am sure you are aware you can go lighter by packing smarter leaving unessential, and still keeping the things that can save your life. lighter pack, better bag, less crap, good multi purpose quick dry clothes. Decisions decisions decisions. I am just saying that there are allot of inexperienced hikers out there who think that in the last 500 miles since they left Springer, have become "experts" and have and are making some seriously foolish choices, which may cost them more than they realize. having a 20# pack is awesome when weather is good but if it is the wrong 20# when weather turns on you... If you Know people who are on the trail now give them some fair warning that the warm weather of the last few months is unusual and can change very quickly at elevation, especially for those who are flying quickly up the trail further and further north ahead of the pack

  14. #14
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    Years back we were on Grassy Ridge north of Roan Mtn on Thanksgiving weekend. I know that is late in the fall, but it's not really winter yet. Knew it would be colder, but I wasn't expecting it to go down to 9 degrees that night! We learned a few things that weekend!

  15. #15

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    I hear ya! brrrrr

  16. #16

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    Last weekend on a section hike in TN, I ran into a couple of section hikers camping along the trail. We got to talking and they both commented that they were very cold the night before. The overnight temperature was about 34 degrees. I asked them what their bags were rated, and they had no idea. So they pulled their bags out of their tent to show me what they were using. Clearly, the bag the guy was using was a summer bag, probably rated about 50 degrees. I have one very similar. And the girl's bag was a Lufuma, and I am guessing from the loft and weight, that it was a 40 or 45. So I gave them some tips for staying warm the next night, like drinking a warm beverage before bed, wearing a hat, and warming up their bodies before getting in the their bags. Hope they did ok.
    Some people take the straight and narrow. Others the road less traveled. I just cut through the woods.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by grego View Post
    I just got back from an 11 day section hike starting at 19E in Tn and ending at Grayson Highlands. Many of the thru hikers had already sent back all their cold weather gear. I am very fearful we are going to have a hypothermia tragedy, the weather has lulled many hikers into a false sense of security, and those mtns can turn on you quick. Just a word of caution dont ship your cold weather gear back too early. I know it can be tempting to drop weight and make miles but not at the cost of your life. cold and wet can kill!

    2-G
    Someone hid the decline http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMqc7PCJ-nc&feature=fvsr
    "The aim of science is to make difficult things understandable in a simpler way; the aim of poetry is to state simple things in an incomprehensible way. The two are incompatible."
    -- Paul Dirac

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    That was great john,good find,Awesome!
    I hike for hikin'

  19. #19
    Registered User sterling98's Avatar
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    I'm doing a section from damascus to fox creek in a week. Will a 35* bag be sufficient? The weather for Damascus says the lows will be in the 40's...

  20. #20
    Registered User Hnsnhiker's Avatar
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    Default Worried about thru hikers dropping cold weather gear too early

    I live in Northern Virginia and have needed my 20* bag as late as the third week in June. Hate sleepin cold!

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