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  1. #1
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    Default Did you hike the AT early march in 03' or 10' weather?

    Did you start or hike the AT southern section in early march in 03' and or 10'?
    or know somebody that did?

    Details on what were the weather conditions like in the mountains? Temps, Cold, Snow, Rain, amount of precipitation etc....?

    What did you have to deal with?
    Last edited by petedelisio; 01-06-2019 at 13:01.

  2. #2

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    Curious as to why you want to know what the weather was like 9 and 16 years ago?
    Follow slogoen on Instagram.

  3. #3

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    Likely the weather was really bad and thus gives a good worst case. Just guessing.

    Petdelisio, you might try looking at trail journals from those years and see what people were complaining about at the time. TrailJournals.com ought to have several from those years who hiked in March.

  4. #4
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miner View Post
    Likely the weather was really bad and thus gives a good worst case. Just guessing.

    Petdelisio, you might try looking at trail journals from those years and see what people were complaining about at the time. TrailJournals.com ought to have several from those years who hiked in March.
    I provided links to March, 2010 Trail Journals in the other thread looking for the same information.
    Wayne

  5. #5
    Registered User soilman's Avatar
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    I started on April 7, 2010 with a hiker from WI who had originally tried to start on March 7. He hiked to Springer and he said he slept on a slab of ice. He returned home to WI where he said it was warmer.
    More walking, less talking.

  6. #6
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    [QUOTE=Slo-go'en;2233498]Curious as to why you want to know what the weather was like 9 and 16 years ago?[/QUOTE
    For meteorological science...

    El Nino' and a good handful of other tell tale systems are lining up pretty much the same this 18'/19' season as the 02'/03' and 09'/10' winter seasons... I am attempting to gather these first hand memory/ journal reports before I attempt to gain any Ranger/park info.

    European models are showing the same pretty much. They are slightly off this far into the season but it is looking like they may recover,; come in close to those past year conditions on top of the mountains for this year 19'... below average to much below average temps with plenty of storms, rain sleet ice and snow accumulation

    We may pack for more cold and wet, snow and ice.
    Last edited by petedelisio; 01-06-2019 at 21:47.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    I provided links to March, 2010 Trail Journals in the other thread looking for the same information.
    Wayne
    Good stuff from you and Walker!!!
    Thanks

  8. #8
    Registered User rmitchell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    Curious as to why you want to know what the weather was like 9 and 16 years ago?
    May be like trying to predict stock market ups and downs by past trends.

    As good a guess as any.

    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best.

  9. #9
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    2003 is regarded as possibly the most wet spring in the history of the A.T. There’s a great porcast episode in which Baltimore Jack discusses hiking during that infamous season, which I’ve linked below.

    https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/...=1000157021289
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  10. #10
    Registered User ldsailor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by petedelisio View Post
    El Nino' and a good handful of other tell tale systems are lining up pretty much the same this 18'/19' season as the 02'/03' and 09'/10' winter seasons... I am attempting to gather these first hand memory/ journal reports before I attempt to gain any Ranger/park info.

    European models are showing the same pretty much. They are slightly off this far into the season but it is looking like they may recover,; come in close to those past year conditions on top of the mountains for this year 19'... below average to much below average temps with plenty of storms, rain sleet ice and snow accumulation

    We may pack for more cold and wet, snow and ice.
    This seems like a very interesting premise. If your theory holds true, everyone leaving Springer early in the year should be paying attention.
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  11. #11
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Around Christmas I read an article online about a repeat ďPolar VortexĒ outbreak of cold air across the USA. Either itís not happening or itís late. The Bears Eagles game last night in Chicago was 50 F.
    You never know until it happens.
    Wayne

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Around Christmas I read an article online about a repeat ďPolar VortexĒ outbreak of cold air across the USA. Either itís not happening or itís late. The Bears Eagles game last night in Chicago was 50 F.
    You never know until it happens.
    Wayne
    I remember the Polar Vortex we had here in the Southeast during January 2014. I was on a 24 day backpacking trip and it hit me on the Benton MacKaye trail with -10F temps and snow---effectively pinning me in camp for 3 days until temps warmed up to 0F.

    TRIP 152 115-XL.jpg
    I consider polar cold snaps to be major storms like rainstorms or blizzards or windstorms etc---and so I always try to find a place to make my stand---and this was my hunker squat station during the 2014 vortex on the Benton MacKaye trail.

    TRIP 152 119-XL.jpg
    Looking up the MacKaye trail on a very cold morning.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Around Christmas I read an article online about a repeat “Polar Vortex” outbreak of cold air across the USA. Either it’s not happening or it’s late. The Bears Eagles game last night in Chicago was 50 F.
    You never know until it happens.
    Wayne
    And we should never forget the so-called Arctic Outbreak of January 21, 1985. I was in Boone NC and we got -30F. Knoxville hit -24F. It could happen again.

  14. #14
    Registered User The Old Chief's Avatar
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    Here's what you are looking for. I can vouch for the accuracy of these journal entries in early March.


    http://www.trailjournals.com/journal/entry/27376

  15. #15
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    If there's one constant regarding an AT thru-hike, and especially so the earlier one starts, it is wetter and colder than most anticipate.

  16. #16
    Registered User ScottTrip's Avatar
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    I left Springer on March 9th 2014 the weather was typical early spring with nice days of sun (40 to 50s) then several cold rainy days the nights were cold. Nothing that I did not expect being from the south myself. But that all changed about 2 weeks later in GSMNP. We had foot of snow all the way across the park with below freezing nights. Nice weather at Standing Bear for a day, then burtal cold temps into single digits, and snow for the next week into Hot Springs. On my hike it really didnot get into the constant nice weather until early April. You just have to be ready for bad weather and hope it is good.

  17. #17
    Peakbagger Extraordinaire The Solemates's Avatar
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    It never ceases to amaze me how people act paralyzed when they are in the woods and cold weather, say -10 with a foot of snow and a few miles to walk, happens. People do this every week, in say bwca or talkeetna, just to get the mail.
    The only thing better than mountains, is mountains where you haven't been.

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  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solemates View Post
    It never ceases to amaze me how people act paralyzed when they are in the woods and cold weather, say -10 with a foot of snow and a few miles to walk, happens. People do this every week, in say bwca or talkeetna, just to get the mail.
    Well, if your not prepared for it and not acclimatized to it, it is brutal. But if your going to be in the mountains of North Carolina in March, you best be prepared for it.
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  19. #19
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    People who are not familiar with altitude and itís effects on temperatures and precipitation are caught unawares.
    No matter how many times itís said, somebody doesnít get the message about how miserable it is when the temperature drops below 50, the breeze picks up and the atmosphere turns liquid.
    Be dry. Be warm. Be safe.
    Wayne

  20. #20
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solemates View Post
    It never ceases to amaze me how people act paralyzed when they are in the woods and cold weather, say -10 with a foot of snow and a few miles to walk, happens. People do this every week, in say bwca or talkeetna, just to get the mail.
    AT thru-hikers simply aren't prepared for such extremes. It's a trade off between lighter and faster and total preparedness. People in Talkeetna going out for the mail aren't carrying their lives on their backs, plus they have local experience and knowledge. Typically hikers should be prepared for conditions roughly 20 degrees below the average lows at the elevations they are hiking - which are not the temps in the valley below. And if it's worse than that, be prepared to bail out. The problems usually arise when they prepare for average temps in Knoxville - and then learn the hard way about mountain weather.

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