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mountain squid
03-22-2013, 10:43
This morning it was 18f outside in NE TN. http://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s8661.gifThat translates to roughly 3f on top of Roan (and probably less than that). Yesterday there was snow http://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s12538.gif (http://www.tiptopglobe.com/smileys-free-download)on the ground and next week doesn't look too much warmer.http://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s2145.gif (http://www.tiptopglobe.com/smileys-free-download) I was wondering how warm (or how cold?!?) hikers would be with a 30f or even a 40f sleeping bag. I think I would be cold in a 20f at those temps . . . . http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-fc/fire.gif


I hope everyone has the proper gear as they start their long distance journeys . . . . brrrrrhttp://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s3749.gif (http://www.tiptopglobe.com/smileys-free-download)

Oh, by the way . . . Happy Spring everyone!http://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s0212.gif (http://www.tiptopglobe.com/smileys-free-download)

See you on the trail,
mt squid

Springer Mountain weather (http://www.mountain-forecast.com/peaks/Springer-Mountain/forecasts/1153)

jcheil
03-22-2013, 11:05
crap, since I'm leaving on the 10th, I am hoping it will be a little warmer by then. i would have thought by now the snow and freezing temps would have been gone.

I am going to go with a marmot 15 degree down bag since I am alergic to cold :)
I hope that will be enough.

Praha4
03-22-2013, 12:26
looks more like spring 2010. Smokies and Roan Mtn will be fun for the nobos in the next couple weeks. another reason why I would wait til early April to start a nobo thru

Slo-go'en
03-22-2013, 13:03
It had better warm up by the middle of April! Okay, I'd settle for the first week of May when I hit the Smokies. My Lafuma bag rating tag says : 41F - your okay, 30F - you'll live, 20F - good friggin luck!

I stayed on top of Roan Mt a few years ago with a 35 F bag, temps went down into the 20s'. Froze my butt off, did isometics in the bag all night. Soon as it got light I high tailed it out of there and hiked 2 miles before I was warm enough to stop and eat breakfist!

Fireweed
03-22-2013, 13:18
Roan is one if not the highest shelter on the trail is it not? Hopefully things will get warmer as you go. Makes me think I may up my sleeping bag to the zero degree one when I start next week in PA. Courage!

Datto
03-22-2013, 13:42
This is what I use when I think I might run into bitter cold weather (also, I've used the Space brand Mylar sleeping bags which also hold up) -- you put this inside your regular sleeping bag, then put Gatorade bottles with hot water inside the Mylar sleeping bag:

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/00056.html#.UUyWtYIhjkI


Datto

Bronk
03-23-2013, 03:06
I started in February and carried a 50 sleeping bag I bought at Walmart for $10. But I also slept with all of my clothes on when it was very cold, including a fleece shirt and a fleece vest and a rain jacket, hat and gloves. If it was really cold I wrapped my tent and rainfly around my sleeping bag...I only had to do that twice. But from seeing the discussion on this topic here in the past I am a rarity...most people are not as tolerant of the cold as I am. When I lay down to sleep at night if its really cold I can feel my metabolism and heart rate speeding up. If it was really cold I also made sure I ate something before going to bed so my body would have something to burn while I slept.

And its about a complete system as well. If you're sleeping in your underwear in a 20 bag that is not the same as sleeping in a 20 bag with all of your clothes on.

People used to say don't get rid of your cold weather gear until after April 15th and after you pass Roan mountain. So I sent a lot of stuff home from Elk Park, NC only to wake up to snow on May 21st. That was a cold day.

mountain squid
03-23-2013, 20:05
Went up to Carvers Gap (below Roan Mountain) this morning. It was about 35f, so I reckon it was a bit warmer than 3f last night. I hiked out to Stan Murray Shelter. There is still some snow up there with occasional 12" drifts.

jcheil - you'll probably be ok with a 15f bag next month.

Fireweed - Roan High Knob Shelter (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4qfIZ9Rykk) is indeed the highest shelter on the trail.

Bronk - I disagree with your 'complete system' system. Obviously it worked well for you, but what happens if 'all of your clothes' are wet . . . personally I think a hiker should carry a sleeping bag rated to a temp that they routinely expect to encounter.

Good Luck and Have Fun!

See you on the trail,
mt squid

some observations (http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?14493-observations-from-fs42-(advice-for-first-week-on-trail)&highlight=)

Bronk
03-24-2013, 06:20
The problem with the temperature ratings is they don't address the differences in clothing people wear when they are in the sleeping bag. When I'm hiking I only wear clothing that still works when it is wet. I've gone to sleep in wet clothes before and they are dry by the time I wake up.

The way I do things is simply leveraging the layering of clothing and applying it to when you are sleeping...and those same layers can also be used during the day while you're hiking.

10-K
03-24-2013, 06:31
Bronk, what I take away from MS's comment is that the margin of error is too high when you rely on your clothes to supplement your bag in extreme conditions.

Maybe in late spring, early fall when you're not at risk of single digit temps - but in the winter, early spring and late fall it might be time to consider a proper bag.

That's really good advice.

The Cleaner
03-24-2013, 07:13
I'd like to know the difference from very cold and really cold...I always have a thermometer to keep me informed of the real temperature.As you know on a 32* day one can still work up a sweat climbing and think that the temp has warmed when in fact you have warmed and the temperature could still be 32*.....

doritotex
03-24-2013, 07:33
More snow for the mountains starting tonight thru Tuesday afternoon. Todays weather advisory from the NWS.....

Significant snowfall accumulations possible across the higher elevations by Tuesday afternoon...
a strengthening low pressure system will move northeastward across the southern appalachian region tonight...bringing colder air into the region behind the passage of a cold front. Rain will quickly change over to snow tonight...with a moderate to locally heavy snowfall accumulation possible by Tuesday afternoon...
Mainly across the higher elevations of southwest Virginia...
Northeast Tennessee...and the smoky mountains.
...winter storm watch remains in effect from late tonight through Tuesday afternoon...
* Event...snowfall accumulations of 1 to 4 inches will be possible by Tuesday afternoon in the lower elevations below 2500 feet...
With 4 to 8 inches possible across the higher elevations above 2500 feet. Locally higher amounts of up to a foot will be possible by Tuesday afternoon across the highest elevations above 4000 feet.

* Timing...tonight through Tuesday afternoon.

10-K
03-24-2013, 08:03
I'd like to know the difference from very cold and really cold...I always have a thermometer to keep me informed of the real temperature.As you know on a 32* day one can still work up a sweat climbing and think that the temp has warmed when in fact you have warmed and the temperature could still be 32*.....

I think the takeaway from this thread is that if you have the right gear how cold it is isn't nearly as important as it would be if you didn't.

I totally agree... If I'm going to cut corners I'm not going to do it when it can kill me..... Unless it involves shimmying over a raging mini-river on a log in the pouring down rain instead of waiting.... :)

Mountain Mike
03-24-2013, 09:40
The problem with the temperature ratings is they don't address the differences in clothing people wear when they are in the sleeping bag. When I'm hiking I only wear clothing that still works when it is wet. I've gone to sleep in wet clothes before and they are dry by the time I wake up.

The way I do things is simply leveraging the layering of clothing and applying it to when you are sleeping...and those same layers can also be used during the day while you're hiking.

May be fine for 3 season but in winter where does that moisture end up? Most likely degrading your sleeping bag insulation if you are on a prolonged trip.. A big part of winter camping/conditions is not sweating to much. If you start getting warm take your hat off, open zippers, even your fly to avoid it. A cold wet shirt at 50 is uncomfortable. at 10 it's a frozen board & trouble.

Brewerbob
03-24-2013, 13:30
For those at/near Roan Mountain, stop at the Mountain Harbour Hostel. The wife and I were there (the Bed & Breakfast side) last weekend. Great meals.

Thanks for all the "bickering". I'm still very much a noob but want to do a thru hike next spring.

FatHead64
03-24-2013, 14:15
I'd like to know the difference from very cold and really cold...I always have a thermometer to keep me informed of the real temperature.As you know on a 32* day one can still work up a sweat climbing and think that the temp has warmed when in fact you have warmed and the temperature could still be 32*.....

I think the takeaway from this thread is that if you have the right gear how cold it is isn't nearly as important as it would be if you didn't.

I totally agree... If I'm going to cut corners I'm not going to do it when it can kill me..... Unless it involves shimmying over a raging mini-river on a log in the pouring down rain instead of waiting.... :)

I read that thread/report!

Rasty
03-24-2013, 14:19
I think the takeaway from this thread is that if you have the right gear how cold it is isn't nearly as important as it would be if you didn't.

I totally agree... If I'm going to cut corners I'm not going to do it when it can kill me..... Unless it involves shimmying over a raging mini-river on a log in the pouring down rain instead of waiting.... :)

Only when your solo. Don't want to encourage dangerous behavior with others!

Pages
03-24-2013, 17:05
looks like a great year to start mid -april. i feel sorry for the people that started in march. too cold. and jan or feb people are just fools in my opinion.

plan on starting at springer april 15. should be warm enough by then and plenty of time to finish, barring injury.

i want to enjoy my hike, not just survive it!

- pages

Slo-go'en
03-24-2013, 18:10
I'd like to know the difference from very cold and really cold...I always have a thermometer to keep me informed of the real temperature.As you know on a 32* day one can still work up a sweat climbing and think that the temp has warmed when in fact you have warmed and the temperature could still be 32*.....

I can and do work up a sweat when it's minus 10 out. But when it's that cold out, the air is really dry too, so anything damp dries out pretty quick from body heat. It's the near freezing temps which are worst since it is often really damp too. Just plain nasty and raw. If you can get anything to dry under those conditions, it takes a lot of energy to do so.

FatHead64
03-24-2013, 18:42
I can and do work up a sweat when it's minus 10 out. But when it's that cold out, the air is really dry too, so anything damp dries out pretty quick from body heat. It's the near freezing temps which are worst since it is often really damp too. Just plain nasty and raw. If you can get anything to dry under those conditions, it takes a lot of energy to do so.

I agree - I will sweat in any case. Even just below freezing is better than just above - much drier.

Nooga
03-24-2013, 19:06
The problem with the temperature ratings is they don't address the differences in clothing people wear when they are in the sleeping bag. When I'm hiking I only wear clothing that still works when it is wet. I've gone to sleep in wet clothes before and they are dry by the time I wake up.

The way I do things is simply leveraging the layering of clothing and applying it to when you are sleeping...and those same layers can also be used during the day while you're hiking.

Keep in mind that if you are sleeping with wet clothes in your sleeping bag, you are pumping moisture into the bag, which will further reduce its insulation value, plus make it heavier.

leaftye
03-24-2013, 21:05
The problem with the temperature ratings is they don't address the differences in clothing people wear when they are in the sleeping bag. When I'm hiking I only wear clothing that still works when it is wet. I've gone to sleep in wet clothes before and they are dry by the time I wake up.

The way I do things is simply leveraging the layering of clothing and applying it to when you are sleeping...and those same layers can also be used during the day while you're hiking.

This isn't correct. I understand your frustration that we don't have an easy and comprehensive calculator that tells us how our sleeping systems should perform with any combination of body types and clothing.

The EN sleeping bag rating system does what it can very well, and specifies what clothing is worn in the sleeping bag, the sleeping surface, age, gender, and even the sleeping position.

If you wear extra clothing, then shouldn't it be up to the clothing manufacturer to provide you with the CLO of that garment? When you have the CLO for your clothing, you can do the calculations to determine how that changes the rating of your sleeping system.

jcheil
03-24-2013, 23:33
looks like a great year to start mid -april. i feel sorry for the people that started in march. too cold. and jan or feb people are just fools in my opinion.

plan on starting at springer april 15. should be warm enough by then and plenty of time to finish, barring injury.

i want to enjoy my hike, not just survive it!

- pages

I'll be starting on April 10th. I just decided bought the Western Mountaineering VersaLite 10 degree bag. The LONG (6'6") version is only 2lb 2oz and at that weight, I'll just carry it for the whole trip and sleep on top of it in the summer (or unzipped).

Being a Floridian for the past 25 years (Western Massachusetts transplant) I am SO worried about the cold, but I got some great under-clothing to supplement sleeping if needed - I hope ;)

Theosus
03-24-2013, 23:52
plan on starting at springer april 15. should be warm enough by then and plenty of time to finish, barring injury

- pages

Im doing Springer to Neels starting Easter sunday. Hoping it will be more spring-like, but I have my 0* underquilt and my 20* top... hope I wont have to test their limits. I've been down to 30 in them and was quite warm.

LDog
03-25-2013, 00:43
Keep in mind that if you are sleeping with wet clothes in your sleeping bag, you are pumping moisture into the bag, which will further reduce its insulation value, plus make it heavier.

Absolutely. I've heard over and over about people bringing wet clothes into their bags to dry them. That moisture has to go someplace, and that's into the insulation. As the insulation gets damp, the loft diminishes, and that warm 15 degree bag turns into a cold 32 degree bag, and worst. Even just our natural sweat is enough to diminish the effectiveness of a down bag over several days. Some use a vapor barrier liners when out for extended periods in extreme cold to avoid this issue. Finding opportunities to air out one's bag in the sunshine, and throwing it in a warm (not hot) dryer in town are good practices this time of year.

mountain squid
03-25-2013, 09:08
30f degrees and snowing http://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s4561.gif (http://www.tiptopglobe.com/smileys-free-download)this morning. It looks like the rest of the week will have lows in the 20s and it doesn't look like Springer will be much warmer. http://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s4317.gif (http://www.tiptopglobe.com/smileys-free-download)Alot of hikers will be starting this week and weekend . . . Be prepared and be careful.

So, what did happen to Spring this year? Anyone know? I think the groundhog got himself in trouble for a lousy prediction . . .


See you on the trail,
mt squid

Springer Mountain weather (http://www.mountain-forecast.com/peaks/Springer-Mountain/forecasts/1153)

mountain squid
05-12-2013, 18:58
Frost advisory tonight in NE TN. Supposed to have lows in the 30s tonight and tomorrow night. And, of course, that means even colder temps in the higher elevations. We did some final preps for Hard Core today on Roan . . . it was cold and very windy.

Hope everyone still has their cold weather gear . . . brrrrr

See you on the trail,
mt squid

bigcranky
05-13-2013, 07:40
It's 40F this morning in the beautiful piedmont of North Carolina. Kinda chilly for this time of year, hope it warms up a bit for my hike in two weeks.

Venchka
05-13-2013, 08:30
Really looking forward to going back to the NC-TN mountains the first week of June. Maybe it will be spring by then. Have the rhododendrons started blooming?

Wayne

Tennessee Viking
05-13-2013, 08:31
Frost advisory tonight in NE TN. Supposed to have lows in the 30s tonight and tomorrow night. And, of course, that means even colder temps in the higher elevations. We did some final preps for Hard Core today on Roan . . . it was cold and very windy.

Hope everyone still has their cold weather gear . . . brrrrr

See you on the trail,
mt squid

My family was just up at Carvers Gap and the Roan Gardens this weekend, and they said a number of thru-hikers passed through. A few of them were trying to hitch into town because they already sent home their winter clothes and were needing something through these cold nights. The high on Roan for the weekend was under 40.

Hardcore Weatherforecast is calling for rain throughout the weekend with highs in the 70s and lows in the 50s. Day 1 shouldn't be too bad. But Day 2 on Roan...I hope you all like getting dirty especially on whoever gets into Bob's, Camo's or Otto's groups. Lots of rock work...HA'ADCORE!

Namtrag
05-13-2013, 15:01
We were up at Grayson Highlands two weekends ago, and it was like a hurricane Friday night..only the hurricane had 33 degree driving mist and ice pellets! We saw some thru's in Damascus Saturday evening who had shuttled back from Old Orchard Shelter to get out of the storm.

mountain squid
05-14-2013, 07:43
Have the rhododendrons started blooming?Not that I've noticed.

Another chilly start to the morning, but the sun is shining so it should warm quickly . . . http://www.tiptopglobe.com/skin/smile/s0212.gif (http://www.tiptopglobe.com/smileys-free-download)

Hope it doesn't rain this weekend . . . that would not be good during Hard Core (but it has happened before) . . . about to head out and pre-stage some tools.

See you on the trail,
mt squid