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Thread: March start

  1. #1
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    Default March start

    So, with the Corona virus my new job training is being delayed for 6-8 weeks.....hopefully. I am in Alaska and they will fly me where i want to go and then fly me back when training starts.

    I am an experienced hiker and am thinking of starting a hike on the AT this coming weekend. And maybe hike for the next 6 weeks.or so. Logistics I will work out. I have cold gear, rain gear, not winter gear though.

    Starting say March 21. My first thought was HF heading south. Easy access from DC.

    Any ideas would be.much appreciated.

    Thanks

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  2. #2
    Registered User tarditi's Avatar
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    A really bad time to travel - also a really bad time to be stuck in a situation where you can't get resupply or transportation to trailheads, etc. Just my $.02

  3. #3
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    The ATC is asking hikers to postpone AT hikes...
    http://appalachiantrail.org/home/com...nd-thru-hikers

    It seems the main issues is that AT thru hikers don't JUST stay on the trail.



    As for the weather, while I can't make any guarantees, winter is over here in the south (but the rain just won't go away).

  4. #4
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    Probably the worst time ever to even consider doing a long distance hike. Much less get on a plane?

  5. #5
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    might see a surge in sales of Peletons. My neighbor across street just got one delivered at his home.

  6. #6

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    If you can do this in an unsupported fashion, as in you carry all your food and rely on no one or no thing you would be ok-but that’s not realistic. It is less than ideal to plan a long distance hike until more details available to help you make a well informed decision. Short hikes close to home should be fine.

  7. #7
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    Seems like staying in Alaska might be the best option - there are likely many places to go hiking wherever you are up there (and who knows when you might get a chance to do those normally) within a short travel distance AND you're in a state that has so few people and so much space that staying apart is easier there than anywhere else in the USA.

  8. #8
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    I have placed my hiking plans on hold....not canceled....but on hold. Things change with the virus day to day so will re evaluate next Monday the 30th.

    I have been thinking of ways to minimize contact during this covid-19 pandemic. some thoughts I came up with;

    1) carry at least 7 days worth of food. Even if there are towns within that week
    2) dispersed camping. not using shelters, privys, or tables if present
    3) bring soap. something I don't usually do but I should change. i always bring sanitizer of course
    4) don't use shuttles. hike into town and hike out. make this part of your day.
    5) no hostels - maybe for a shower or I am convinced the hostel is cleaned thoroughly. I do know of one in northern va that is.
    6) of course 6 foot rule
    7) restaurant food - get it to go. probably will have to anyway.
    8) minimize hotel stays as much as possible

    Like i said, my hike is on hold. But, I do think we are gonna have to change the way we operate when attempting long distance hikes. and I think that is gonna apply to next year even

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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wesgoat View Post
    I have placed my hiking plans on hold....not canceled....but on hold. Things change with the virus day to day so will re evaluate next Monday the 30th. ............
    What criteria will you use on the 30th to decide to go or stay?
    If you don't stand for something, you will fall for anything.

  10. #10
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    Not sure yet of the criteria. This thing changes so much day to day. Depends on lockdowns and closures.

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  11. #11

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    FWIW - You seem to have a fairly well thought out plan to minimize contact with others, but given the deepening severity of this virus in the lower 48, you may want to reconsider spending your hiking time in AK as opposed to traveling to the eastern States to hike the AT. Some data you may want to consider:

    There are, to date, 10 out of 13 States the AT travels through have either partial or full on shelter in place orders. Half of these States have partial closings of non-essential business coupled with voluntary social isolation, which should be in the criteria consideration mix for this kind of decision. As of today, these AT States break down:

    States having some areas with shelter in place orders and/or business closings are (south to north): GA, TN, PA, MA, and ME.

    States with more shelter in place orders along the AT are (south to north): WV, MD, NJ, NY, and CT.

    There is every reason to believe States having areas of closures now will move to full Statewide status within a few days or certainly weeks as the numbers of infections and deaths increase. Compounding all this, hotels may close with these orders and transportation via airlines is probably going to be interrupted on a national level along with local auto-for-hire services being closed down like Uber and shuttle services that would end up stranding travelers.

    We are also starting to see how fast this contagion can spread between people, detailing a very real danger of infection from very brief contact with people on the trail and carrying illness into small "hiker towns" that do not have resources of larger communities to manage health needs, ethical considerations should be employed, as made evident by the issue below:

    Paraphrased article from the NYTimes on 3/23 (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/23/u...arty-zero.html)

    On March 5th, 50 guests from all over the NY metro area, including a guest from South Africa, gathered at a birthday party in Westport CT where a guest was infected but did not have symptoms. Party goers, unaware they carried the virus with them, scattered following the party into the Tri-State metro area. One went to South Africa, developing serious symptoms during the trip home. More than half of the guests are now tested as infected after seeding infections along their way. 11-days following this event, Westport CT recorded 85 cases of COVID 19 infection. Prior to 3/16 Westport had no record of any COVID 19 illness.

    This is called a "Super-Spreading event", that gathered a relatively small number of people which was followed by several people from this event attending other social events in the New York metro area. They went to work as usual without any symptoms, infecting their coworkers, customers, and people along their way to and from work. Their children went to school, played sports, and participated in other after school activities. One of the party guests who woke 3-days following the party with a high temperature sought a test for the virus, but no kits were available and she would wait 4-days for a test that showed positive, losing 7-days in the process of determining who was exposed and reaching them.


    Suffice to say, the birthday party event traces back many, many cases of illness to this single gathering and resulting contacts by people who had no clue they were exposed or were actively infected at the time, which indicates an horrifically rapid rate of infection with even minor contact. This can be extrapolated into trail terms rather easily and has likely occurred at this point, several times.

    * Someone sitting across a picnic table has the virus but is not showing symptoms yet, you drop something that rolls in their direction, they stop it from falling off the table and hand it back, you take it back, thanking them and scratch an itch on your face....

    * You pass someone climbing a steep section of trail, they look at you as you pass, breathing heavily and say an encouraging word or two as you pass, you breathe the exhaled air....

    * Following either of these (or other scenarios) you go into a trail town a day or two later without any symptoms and get to a store for resupply, exchange pleasantries with the store keeper, exchanging money, the store keeper rubs his nose, leaving the store in a few hours for home and family as you proceed to the laundry mat and run into other hikers doing their wash..... ad infinitum.

    It's not hard to see from fleeting moments and everts like getting on a plane or a birthday party of a few hours, passing by someone for a few seconds in a doorway, sheltering from a rain squall in a small shelter, how easily the COVID 19 virus will spread among people who have no symptoms. Adding to the mix is emergency response personnel when someone falls ill and cannot move on their own, which is not just a possibility but an eventuality. Putting EMS personnel at risk, if not directly infecting them, who then unknowingly carry the virus to their next call.

    With the increasing historical knowledge of this virus becoming more clear it appears to be changing "chance" of infection exposure to "probability" of exposure that you will unknowingly contract or carry the virus and pass it on to others (average is 2.5 people infected by one person), especially as this circumstance deepens over the next few weeks to months. It stops being a personal decision and becomes an ethical one as it will likely impact many people along the way there, during the trek, and on the way back. Perhaps even impacting starting your new job.

  12. #12
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    Very well said. I understand everything you said. And beleive it. And like I said I will re evaluate next Monday.

    I am no longer in AK because my lodging there was intertwined with my job training. I am currently sleeping on a friends floor in a little town in RI. Not sure how long this will last.

    I saw GSMNP is closing all access for next two weeks. I'm sure Shenandoah will be next....which would have been where i would be hiking into and out of.

    So, my hiking plan is basically screwed. I still think the trails and the woods are a better place to be....when done with social distancing in mind.....then in any urban environment. Instead of telling people to stay out how about educating hikers with a new set of hiking guidelines. Some, I mentioned in earlier posts.

    But, local, state, and federal governments are telling me otherwise. They know more. Or do they? Are they just pulling a cya? they are making the decision for me. I am no longer have freedoms. I am in lockdown.

    I am gonna walk the 2 miles each way to the grocery store. Just for exercise and some fresh air. Wonder when that.....without any input from me.....supposedly a free american....will be taken from me too.

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  13. #13
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    All true and well said traveler as always. And let's not forget this thing is so contagious it can enter through your eyes.

  14. #14

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    We have two open threads on Covid-19 where this can be discussed further. Closed.
    "Sleepy alligator in the noonday sun
    Sleepin by the river just like he usually done
    Call for his whisky
    He can call for his tea
    Call all he wanta but he can't call me..."
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