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  1. #1
    Registered User tolkien's Avatar
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    Default SoBo specific gear?

    I've decided that I'm getting a comfortable external frame pack, and a pair of sturdy hiking boots. I'll also be bringing two 1-ltr water carriers in addition to my water bottle just in case.

    The more expansive external frame will be used for comfortalby hauling extra food and warm clothing through the somewhat isolated northeast. Also, DEET. Lots of DEET.
    I've also been looking at a Therm-A-Rest Z-Lite pad: I've heard good things.

    Any advice or suggestions are welcome. But I will not be using trail runners.
    Made it down the coast in seventeen hours/ Pickin' me a bouquet of dogwood flowers

  2. #2
    MEGA '11, LT '09,'13
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    AT guide southbounder's edition. Otherwise, were hiking the same trail as NOBOs so your gear shouldnt be that different, if at all.

  3. #3
    Registered User naturejunkie's Avatar
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    Nothing against external frame packs, but find an outfitter and try some different packs, you may find that an internal frame is more comfortable. You're not going to be carrying THAT much extra food and clothes, so that should not determine what type of pack you choose.

    Don't go too sturdy on the boots. Maine is wet, rocky, rooty, etc. Heavy boots will hold water when they get wet, and they will get wet. You do not want to hike Maine in wet heavy boots. Try for something that breathes, ie. no gortex barrier, and is reasonably light.

    The Z-rest is good, light, cheap, durable and also serves as a seat. But it does compress, so if you're a side sleeper you may want an inflatable pad.

    Good luck!

  4. #4
    Registered User Sickmont's Avatar
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    Maybe some blaze orange clothing for when you get down south during hunting season
    Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time. - Steven Wright

  5. #5

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    I love my ridgerest, I've had it for about 10 years and it's still going strong. I have the thinner 4ft one, straps nicely to the outside of my pack. At rest stops I pull it out to sit/lay on. One of the most underrated aspects of ccf pads is the carefree attitude you can have with them. No more looking for a rock to sit on to rest just because the ground is muddy. Once the pad dries out the mud just falls off with a good shake. It doesn't have a lot of "cush" but I don't mind much, I've slept on worse. At less than 10 ounces it's no big burden and it keeps you warm.

    Got my AT guide today, format is fantastic. Lot's of useful information, especially about water sources and resupply, that some of the other guides don't have. I'd highly recommend it.

  6. #6
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    I agree with Amanita. I carried a Therm-a-Rest Prolite Plus on my thru hike and never had any issues but I did a hike through the Smokies late last year and used my RidgeRest. Darn thing was warmer and lighter than the inflatable pad. I'll carry it next time for sure.
    Last edited by Spokes; 05-04-2011 at 14:59.

  7. #7
    Registered User tolkien's Avatar
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    Wait, so the RidgeRest is inflatable? I don't want an inflatable pad. Too much to deal with.
    Made it down the coast in seventeen hours/ Pickin' me a bouquet of dogwood flowers

  8. #8
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    Sobo specific gear I'd consider suggesting (YMMV)

    1) Head net
    2) Long pants
    3) Long sleeve shirt (tight weave)
    4) Garden gloves or similar
    5) Deet

    And

    5) One more pair of socks than makes sense

  9. #9
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    What do you guys think about sandals for the NE?

    I've done some hiking in asian countries during monsoon season (of course, I didn't know what I was doing was called hiking...I thought I was just walking :O ) and found sandals dried a lot quicker and gave you no blisters.

    I'm bringing boots and sandals with me to maine, as I have no experience with that kind of terrain but I'm interested to hear what other people's experience has been.

  10. #10

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    I used sandals in the Hundred Mile Wilderness after my shoes gave out. I had to pull lots of small sticks and stones out from under my feet. I wore socks in the sandals.
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

  11. #11
    Registered User tolkien's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khalidur View Post
    What do you guys think about sandals for the NE?

    I've done some hiking in asian countries during monsoon season (of course, I didn't know what I was doing was called hiking...I thought I was just walking :O ) and found sandals dried a lot quicker and gave you no blisters.

    I'm bringing boots and sandals with me to maine, as I have no experience with that kind of terrain but I'm interested to hear what other people's experience has been.
    Sandals would be good for water, but they would flop around (friction = blisters), fall apart quicker than boots, retain heat poorly, and perhaps most importantly I think they would allow the terrain to wear more on your feet, due to the lack of arches and ankle support and the open toes. Also, I have a phobia of snake bites (not snakes, just poisonous bites) and I cant help picturing a rattlesnake biting into a big toe.

    That last bit may be a bit sensationalistic, but you get the idea.

    I would hike mostly with boots, but bringing sandals along for easy stretches and to shower in might help preventing food odor and fungal infections.
    Made it down the coast in seventeen hours/ Pickin' me a bouquet of dogwood flowers

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by tolkien View Post
    Wait, so the RidgeRest is inflatable? I don't want an inflatable pad. Too much to deal with.
    ridgerest is NOT an inflatable. It's closed cell foam, just roll out and lay down

  13. #13
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    Yep, the Prolite Plus I mentioned is the inflatable.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by tolkien View Post
    Sandals would be good for water, but they would flop around (friction = blisters), fall apart quicker than boots, retain heat poorly, and perhaps most importantly I think they would allow the terrain to wear more on your feet, due to the lack of arches and ankle support and the open toes. Also, I have a phobia of snake bites (not snakes, just poisonous bites) and I cant help picturing a rattlesnake biting into a big toe.

    That last bit may be a bit sensationalistic, but you get the idea.

    I would hike mostly with boots, but bringing sandals along for easy stretches and to shower in might help preventing food odor and fungal infections.
    We're probably gonna have to agree to disagree here. Arches in the foot are made by muscles and ligaments in the lower legs that travel into the foot and intrinsic foot muscles. both muscles and ligaments can get ticker and stronger with use. walking around barefoot has given me a a very curvilicous foot.

    I think if you slowly ease yourself into it, the foot adapts. Saying that, I still haven't been able to find good pictures of what the tread is like in Maine, and it could be something completely new to me.

  15. #15
    Registered User tolkien's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khalidur View Post
    We're probably gonna have to agree to disagree here. Arches in the foot are made by muscles and ligaments in the lower legs that travel into the foot and intrinsic foot muscles. both muscles and ligaments can get ticker and stronger with use. walking around barefoot has given me a a very curvilicous foot.

    I think if you slowly ease yourself into it, the foot adapts. Saying that, I still haven't been able to find good pictures of what the tread is like in Maine, and it could be something completely new to me.
    The soil in Maine is somewhat thinner and rockier than in the central ridge, so when it gets wet it doesnt get as muddy, which is nice, but it's harder packed and somewhat rough on feet. I would not want to walk through maine or anywhere else in the northeast in thin soles because the rocks and severe changes in elevation would be an issue. Plus, I think sandals would slip off unless you got the kind that have straps going around the back of your ankle.
    Made it down the coast in seventeen hours/ Pickin' me a bouquet of dogwood flowers

  16. #16
    Registered User tolkien's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khalidur View Post
    We're probably gonna have to agree to disagree here. Arches in the foot are made by muscles and ligaments in the lower legs that travel into the foot and intrinsic foot muscles. both muscles and ligaments can get ticker and stronger with use. walking around barefoot has given me a a very curvilicous foot.

    I think if you slowly ease yourself into it, the foot adapts. Saying that, I still haven't been able to find good pictures of what the tread is like in Maine, and it could be something completely new to me.
    Although, the AT has been hiked barefoot, in tennis shoes, and in military-grade calf-high boots. If it's comfortable, use it. But bring shoes as a back up option.
    Made it down the coast in seventeen hours/ Pickin' me a bouquet of dogwood flowers

  17. #17
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Sunglasses. Seriously. You'll be walking into the sun the whole way.

    Your pack doesn't really matter much, so go with comfort. Me, I never found an external that was comfortable (I have very wide shoulders and the frame digs in.)
    Ken B
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    Our Long Trail journal

  18. #18
    Registered User tolkien's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigcranky View Post
    Sunglasses. Seriously. You'll be walking into the sun the whole way.

    Your pack doesn't really matter much, so go with comfort. Me, I never found an external that was comfortable (I have very wide shoulders and the frame digs in.)
    Ive heard people say that they always forgot to use sunglasses or lost them. I'm bringing a wide-brim hat for sun and rain, and as a plus I can drape a bug net over it.
    Made it down the coast in seventeen hours/ Pickin' me a bouquet of dogwood flowers

  19. #19
    Registered User naturejunkie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tolkien View Post
    The soil in Maine is somewhat thinner and rockier than in the central ridge, so when it gets wet it doesnt get as muddy
    I've hiked the 100 Mile Wilderness twice now and I can tell you that this is absolutely not true. You will encounter mud and lots of it, sometimes knee deep or more in boggy areas, to which those who have slipped off of bog bridges can testify.

  20. #20
    Registered User tolkien's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by naturejunkie View Post
    I've hiked the 100 Mile Wilderness twice now and I can tell you that this is absolutely not true. You will encounter mud and lots of it, sometimes knee deep or more in boggy areas, to which those who have slipped off of bog bridges can testify.
    I mean on the balds and the ridges. Of course the lowlands/woods are muddy.
    Made it down the coast in seventeen hours/ Pickin' me a bouquet of dogwood flowers

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