View Full Version : Advice!

09-18-2007, 23:46

I am planning to do a southbound thru-hike next year but i have a slight problem. Because of previously planned trips i can only start the thru-hike in early august.(the first week of august to be precise). Does that mean i will get snow-storms half way through my thru-hike?? or ar my chances of having a pleasant (but difficult, yes ive heard) hike very slim?? It would be great to know if these dates sound like a good idea... thanks.


Appalachian Tater
09-19-2007, 00:21
Why don't you do the Florida trail, too? Start at Katahdin, head south until the weather gets bad, then flip flop down to Key West and start heading north through Florida and Alabama and over through Georgia and pick up the A.T. to wherever you left off. Then, when spring rolls around, go back to Katahdin and head north on the International A.T. That way you can say you did the whole thing.

There will definitely be snowstorms in the mountains during the winter. But Florida's pretty pleasant that time of the year and you'll truly be hiking with spring.

09-19-2007, 10:24
You'll get snow in the southern mountains, but you'll avoid most/all of the bugs on the north end, a trade I'd take any day.

The real down-side is that you won't have a whole lot of sunlight to be working with, so you'll need to burn both ends of the night (headlamp it morning and evening) if you want to make enough miles to finish before the weather gets too crazy.

09-19-2007, 20:31

by south of the mountains do you mean the carolinas and georgia or even including virginia and the mid atlantic states? Because if i just get snow for the last month its not a problem..but if im gonna have to go through 3 months of camping in the snow, thats really not what i have in mind...

09-19-2007, 21:23
Just anecdotal evidence, but the past 6-7 years have not been too bad in VA. South of here your elevation will stay a little higher and it will be getting later into the year so you may have some snow days to deal with. Most of the time the snow doesn't stay on the ground very long except in the higher elevations. Snow can happen anywhere beginning around mid-Nov but I doubt you would be camping in it night after night. My $0.02.

09-19-2007, 22:03
There's no snow pack in the southern mountains. There are sporadic snow falls, and the possibility of some pretty cold temperatures. IMO, the real difficulties of a late SOBO are the long, dark nights, and the loneliness. But for a handful of hardy souls every year, that's part of the attraction.

SOBO Pride!

09-20-2007, 08:08
If you start the first week in August, and you are working on a 6-month pace, you'll be in Harper's Ferry by the end of October, and finished by the end of January. This is not a bad schedule at all. It's not like you're trying to hike through New England in January. You should get through the northern mountains without any serious winter conditions. You'll be almost into Tennessee by December, and the only serious downsides to hiking in the South in winter are short days, cold nights, and hunters. All of which can be overcome.