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  1. #1

    Default SOBO's, don't underestimate Katahdin

    SOBOs begin their thru hike by first summiting Mt. Katahdin. It is a big mountain and we were unprepared for what lay ahead that day.

    So I have some advice esp for sobos. (by the time nobos get here they've pretty much seen and done it all, and know how long it will take to climb K.)

    1. Bring plenty of water. 7 or 8 hours of climbing + 2 liters water = mistake

    2. Bring plenty of food. The descent off Katahdin is almost as challenging as the ascent. The progress is slow and you really don't want to lose your energy halfway down the Abol or Hunt trail.

    3. Give yourself PLENTY of time. Be waiting at the park gates when they open in the morning. Give yourself as much time as possible.

    4. Bring deet. The black flies are going to be coming at you full force. It will make the first few miles of your assent much more comfortable.

    6. Take plenty of pictures and enjoy the view. It's amazing!

  2. #2

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    In addition to DEET, it's a good idea to bring a long-sleeved shirt and long trousers. Those black flies aren't much deterred by deet! And a bug net would be a good idea, too.

    Actually, you should bring a sweater and warm pants anyhow, since the weather is often very chilly on top, even in summer. But what we did (in June) was to bring just a warm sweater..... it turned out to be both hot and buggy and we were pretty sweaty by the time we got down!!

  3. #3

    Exclamation

    I'll agree - bring extra clothes for the tableland and summit! In June it can be 30 degress colder on top than it is at the Trailhead. And I'll add - The Ranger has loaner day packs for you to borrow at his cabin (you stash your own backpack on the Ranger's porch). And while you're on the porch sign your very first AT Register! It will still have last year's finishing GAMErs entries - always a good read! If you have time, walk up to the Birches site and check it out.
    Teej

    "[ATers] represent three percent of our use and about twenty percent of our effort," retired Baxter Park Director Jensen Bissell.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJ aka Teej
    The Ranger has loaner day packs for you to borrow at his cabin (you stash your own backpack on the Ranger's porch).
    All really good tips. I made a LOT of mistakes on my first day and am just thankful it didn't end my hike on the first day. First, I hiked up with my full pack, which was 48lbs with water - a false sense of bravado and adrenaline made me over-confident. And I completely underestimated how long it would take me to get down the Hunt Trail (we summitted via the Abol Trail, which is gorgeous as well) - as a result, I ended back in the campground after dark, completely and utterly exhausted and hurting from the climb.

    Great tip about the water - just want to add yet another comment of a mistake I made during the early Maine stage of my hike. I was carrying 4 liters of water to start every day, which is an extra 8lbs of weight on your pack. Maine has the most plentiful water in the entire AT - you're constantly passing streams, ponds, and springs. You can really get through all of Maine carrying 1.5-2 liters of water and filling up when you need to, with some exceptions on the longer mountain ranges.

  5. #5

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    all great advice, thanks
    U.S. Marines.
    no better friend. no greater enemy.

  6. #6
    Registered User Phreak's Avatar
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    Personally, I found Mt. K's difficulty to be overrated IMO. I completed it round-trip in 4 hours 20 minutes last June.

  7. #7
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    Dang, you got a good memory!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phreak View Post
    Personally, I found Mt. K's difficulty to be overrated IMO. I completed it round-trip in 4 hours 20 minutes last June.
    I wouldn't call it "easy" hiking but I do recall the round trip taking far less time than I'd figured. Left the ranger's station around 9 AM on the way up, returned just before 3 PM. I think there was a good deal of adrenaline involved.

  9. #9
    Registered User Phreak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by _terrapin_ View Post
    I wouldn't call it "easy" hiking but I do recall the round trip taking far less time than I'd figured. Left the ranger's station around 9 AM on the way up, returned just before 3 PM. I think there was a good deal of adrenaline involved.
    I agree... it's now 'easy' by any stretch, but I heard so many horror stories about its difficulty. So maybe I was prepared for the worse, and it was easier than anticipated.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phreak View Post
    Personally, I found Mt. K's difficulty to be overrated IMO. I completed it round-trip in 4 hours 20 minutes last June.
    yeah. it ain't that tough

  11. #11
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    Kinda sucked with a full pack.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    Kinda sucked with a full pack.
    for you maybe. 4 times for me was no biggie. course i'm a Marine. different mindset

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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    Kinda sucked with a full pack.
    I left my pack at the bottom.


  14. #14
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    for you maybe. 4 times for me was no biggie. course i'm a Marine. different mindset
    You had 10 days worth of food?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flush2wice View Post
    I left my pack at the bottom.
    i won't say it.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    You had 10 days worth of food?
    in 98 yeah SOBO

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    You had 10 days worth of food?
    You took 10 days of food up Katahdin? It's a day hike.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    in 98 yeah SOBO
    you too?


  19. #19
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    duh........

  20. #20
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    Be in shape. Not saying you won't make it if your not, but it makes it a lot more enjoyable if you show up in somewhat decent shape to do the climb. Also have good footwear!!!! Can't stress that enough.

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