View Full Version : Nasty weather

03-21-2007, 07:14
Ok, so i dont mind the wet, i dont mind the heat, i dont mind most things, but what i do mind is contiual cold....ive just developed a rather crappy circulation issue that has only just come about which really hurts my hands in cold conditions, im fine if im moving, but staying cold and staying still is really really not good. its not raynaulds, its similar but very different at the same time, too hard to explain...its to do with the nerves rather than the actual cardio vascular system...

anyway, say i start AT in GA next year, early April time, whats the worst case scenario weather wise?

Frolicking Dinosaurs
03-21-2007, 08:52
Trailers, the Appalachian chain is famous for making its own weather. Serious cold, snow and ice are possible, but the exception rather than the rule.

The male dino seriously injured a hand last summer and it is very sensitive to cold now. He wears a single wool glove on that hand in addition to the mittens we use for hand warmth. He sleeps wearing this as well. If his hand starts to get cold, he puts it in an insulated coat pocket.

03-21-2007, 09:01
Starting in April should keep you away from the extreme cold. But watch out for the Smokies. You are on a ridge for almost the entire time and the weather can be brutal and cold anytime. Then there is the rain. Rain in the Smokies can be dangerous, as well. Not to scare. I haven't had any serious problems there, but I, like you, don't like cold either, so this may sound exaggerated to those who don't mind the cold. It wasn't til my third trip through the Smokies that I had a enjoyable time. And that was only because I blueblazed the first half and avoided walking the ridge until Klingman's.

After that, you should be good until New Hampshire.

Generally, thruhikers send home the heavier cold-weather gear in Damascus.

03-21-2007, 09:04
anyway, say i start AT in GA next year, early April time, whats the worst case scenario weather wise?

Anything is possible, and you should plan accordingly - but most likely if there's snow after that date it won't last long. Night-time temps can and will dip below freezing, though that will be the exception rather than the rule, after April 1.

In my first week from Springer (starting April 4) I had daytime temps of 70+ degrees, freezing rain at Jarrard Gap, a dusting of snow near the top of Blood Mtn. Typical night-time temps in the 35-45 degree range. A month later, a number of hikers a day behind me walked through a blizzard on Roan Mtn.

If you're worried about cold... plan to sleep in a tent; make sure you have a good pad underneath you. Carry (at the very least) a warm fleece hat and gloves and a synthetic base layer.

03-21-2007, 09:20
Generally, thruhikers send home the heavier cold-weather gear in Damascus.

True. And some of them really regret it. Right after Damascus, NOBO, you hit the Mt. Rogers/Grayson Highlands high country (elevation in the mid 5,000s). It can get damned wintry up there in April, even May. Last year it was in the 20s at night, with light snow and blustery winds that sent the wind chill significantly lower on Whitetop Mt. as I hiked into Trail Days (mid-May). (Fortunately, I packed for winter and it wasn't so bad.)

I've also been in serious wet/cold hypothermia conditions in June up there.

IMHO better for NOBOs to wait until Bland or Pearisburg to send home the winter gear.

03-21-2007, 09:27
Thanks for the reassurance guys. im hoping, no praying that this will be better in 12 months, i cant see it being much worse, ive experienced this before but not as bad. its a real shame because i used to have such a high tolerance to the cold when i was younger ( haha sounds funny coming froma 23 yr old!)

the occasional cold spell wont bother me, and if im walking it really doesnt bother me, it just seems my temperature control doesnt work properly when im stopped. i went for a 12 mile walk the other day in freezing winds and i was fine. im just a little nervous about freezing up at night.

by the way this forum is great

03-21-2007, 09:44
So take enough sleeping bag that the insufferably light tell you you don't

need that much weight. Clean, dry, dedicated sleeping socks, hat, and

whatever else.

I have spoken to several guys here who used 35* bags the whole way. One guy said: "Being from Maine, I am used to the cold." Good for him. Being cold in the night sucks, and leads to crankiness.

You can see frost in Maine in August. Low thirties, count on. Be warm. Be well.