View Full Version : AT SOBO in October.....

09-06-2017, 00:34
I am considering a hike starting around October 1st from Harpers Ferry headed South towards Spinger.
Anybody out there have any experience hiking the South half of the AT Oct, Nov, Dec? Any insight, tips and or helpful information would be greatly appreciated.

Thnx in advance for your replies

09-06-2017, 12:26
We have done a lot of section hiking in Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee in the late fall. November is one of my favorite times to be on the trail -- good views, no bugs, cool days and cold nights. You'll find many fewer people on the trail.

I have a blaze orange pack cover, and a blaze orange fleece watch cap. We've met a lot of hunters along the trail and I feel like having some blaze orange is useful. By mid October you'll get nights below freezing, so I break out the 20F bag, then around early or mid November I start taking the 0F bag. That can be overkill but it's worth the extra weight for me.

Many of the hostels and other services that spring and summer hikers take for granted aren't operating in the late fall, so call ahead to check. I find hitching is about the same - there are fewer cars but also fewer hikers trying to hitch :) plus I've had a couple of very memorable hitches with hunters coming back to town.

Hope you enjoy it.

Gambit McCrae
09-06-2017, 12:40
I started in HF oct 1st one year and did 110 miles south. Once of my favorite trips. I made good friends with several thru hikers that were making their way to springer and they made it just fine and dandy. By the time they got to Damascus they were getting some ice and snow, but I guess you just adapt to it and they seemed pretty comfortable . I would start with a 15* bag for October, and then swap to a 0* around end of October. Maybe even a -degree bag if you are a cold sleeper like I am. Many business's will be shut down during that time of year like thru SNP, Damascus has some seasonal business's I believe.