WhiteBlaze Pages 2022
A Complete Appalachian Trail Guidebook.
$5 for printable PDF, AVAILABLE NOW. $9 for interactive PDF(smartphone version)
Read more here WhiteBlaze Pages Store

Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    Registered User Mountain_Goat's Avatar
    Join Date
    10-14-2010
    Location
    Boston,ma
    Age
    46
    Posts
    48
    Journal Entries
    1

    :banana Late Feb. on the AT

    I am undecided about a march or feb. start date.
    I have to be off the trail by Sept. and want to be sure i have enough time to finish.

    If a Feb. start date was to be decided upon. Would microspikes be sufficiant? Would trailrunners be a crazy idea to hike in,in Feb.?

  2. #2
    PCT, Sheltowee, Pinhoti, LT , BMT, AT, SHT, CDT 560 miles 10-K's Avatar
    Join Date
    10-30-2007
    Location
    Erwin, TN
    Age
    61
    Posts
    8,491

    Default

    You just never know... You may not need Microspikes in February and need them in March...

    Oh... and I switched to trail runners last summer but figured on switching to boots for winter but I picked up a pair of goretex socks and some gaiters and am going to try trailrunners this winter. I don't know how it'll work out but my plan is to wear trail runners and regular socks w/ no gaiters when there isn't any precip and put on the goretex socks and gaiters if it's raining/muddy/snowing...
    Last edited by 10-K; 12-08-2010 at 11:37.

  3. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 10-K View Post
    You just never know... You may not need Microspikes in February and need them in March...

    Oh... and I switched to trail runners last summer but figured on switching to boots for winter but I picked up a pair of goretex socks and some gaiters and am going to try trailrunners this winter. I don't know how it'll work out but my plan is to wear trail runners and regular socks w/ no gaiters when there isn't any precip and put on the goretex socks and gaiters if it's raining/muddy/snowing...
    I plan to try the same thing 10-K, let me know you're results if you get out there first!

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    08-08-2008
    Location
    Damascus! (Detroit originally)
    Posts
    738
    Images
    15

    Default

    gortex trail runners would be fine, but i would think that the slushy cold that your most likely gonna encounter would suck in regular shoes...i would also get gaiters...
    Check out my website: www.serialhiking.com

  5. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    03-06-2007
    Location
    Bellevue, WA
    Age
    66
    Posts
    2,000

    Default

    This has been discussed not that long ago in one or more other threads, but FWIW you're going to get a lot of various (and sometimes "strong") opinions on the topic of adequate/proper/best footwear. I wore trail runners for the whole trip this year, starting in late Feb. And not goretex; see a bazillion other threads for the tradeoffs there, but bottom line for me is that I'd only go for goretex shoes (or light boots) if I had a lot of opportunities to get them thoroughly dry along the way. Non-goretex shoes have the virtue of drying out more quickly when they do get wet. And I'd point out that over time just basic wear and tear on goretex footwear can make them "less waterproof", which in turn makes the remaining waterproof-ness about as helpful as a screen door in a submarine, really worse: water gets in, and it's harder for it to get back out.

    I do like goretex socks, just make sure you size them large enough (shoes too) to wear reasonably thick wool socks inside (plus, I suggest, a thin synthetic liner sock).

    This stuff is really really individual. One of my starting hiking partners normally uses trail runners (and is massively experienced at this stuff), but he preferred goretex light hikers (light boots) in the early phase, until Damascus or so.

    Microspikes might be a fine choice, or yaktrax --- you will rarely need any sort of real "crampon", the issue is if you run into extended sections of ice. If you do bring microspikes or yaktrax, don't feel like you need to put them on everytime you see anything white on the ground, but rather just put them on if you are really and truly better off with them on than without them. This might turn out to be less often than you will initially think.

    Whatever footwear you opt for, think through strategy for when they do get wet through (they likely will at times), for when they literally freeze solid overnight (plastic bags and keep them inside the sleeping bag is one solution), for when your wool socks are wet in the morning (answer: put them on anyway), and definitely have some warm socks or booties for in camp and to sleep in that you never, ever get wet.
    Gadget
    PCT: 2008 NOBO, AT: 2010 NOBO, CDT: 2011 SOBO, PNT: 2014+2016

  6. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-26-2010
    Location
    Ben Lomond, California
    Posts
    299
    Images
    2

    Default Wet/Frozen Shoes

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianLe View Post
    Whatever footwear you opt for, think through strategy for when they do get wet through (they likely will at times), for when they literally freeze solid overnight (plastic bags and keep them inside the sleeping bag is one solution), for when your wool socks are wet in the morning (answer: put them on anyway), and definitely have some warm socks or booties for in camp and to sleep in that you never, ever get wet.
    Good point gadget. I had a lot of "frozen" shoes moments in the San Juan mountains of Colorado.
    I finally wised up and would loosen the laces of my tennis shoes and open up the tops each night. That way when they were frozen stiff in the morning i could still get my foot into them. I would lace them on as best i could.
    It sounds nuts but the reality was after a few miles of hiking they would thaw enough to lace back up tight.
    After the first hour of the day I was sweating again anyways.
    I used Injinji toe socks (synthetic) with a smartwool mid weight (wool) sock over the top. It never seemed to matter that my feet and footware was wet for most of the time through Colorado during the melt.
    Same thing on the PCT during the crossing of the Sierra.
    Wet tennis shoes simply are not a problem for most people provided they have some sort of sock strategy. I would save one pair to wear at night. Then i had two working pairs i would rotate during the day. One pair on my feet.. the other pair drying on my pack.
    Personally i would save the money spent on goretex anything and use it for food! Embrace the moisture! The strength of trail runners is that they can be soaked and still be functional. They also defrost and dry out quickly on the trail.
    I never did try the "shoes in the zip lock bag at night" thing. I suppose I am just to lazy! I am lucky i even thought enough to lossen my laces at night.. I was tired in snow.
    For the AT I will be using New Balance 479's with the same sock strategy i used for wet conditions before. Later on in the summer I will switch back to my hot weather strategy. Injinji toe sock with a thin cheap synthetic dress sock over the top.
    Something else that seems to help with wet footware is to use low top socks. I discovered they dry out much more quickly and my ankles don't miss the insulating effect of the high top socks. YMMV
    Headed in to town.. You gotta rock the down! -fellow hikers mantra

  7. #7
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-26-2010
    Location
    Ben Lomond, California
    Posts
    299
    Images
    2

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Iceaxe View Post
    Wet tennis shoes simply are not a problem for most people provided they have some sort of sock strategy. I would save one pair to wear at night. Then i had two working pairs i would rotate during the day. One pair on my feet.. the other pair drying on my pack.
    opps.. I mean extra pairs of socks NOT shoes! Wasn't too clear on that.
    Headed in to town.. You gotta rock the down! -fellow hikers mantra

++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •