WhiteBlaze Pages
A Complete Appalachian Trail Guidebook.
$10 for printed copy(paperback). $6 for interactive PDF. $2 for printable PDF.
Read more here WhiteBlaze Pages Store

Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: PA in January

  1. #1

    Question PA in January

    Hello there ladies and gents,

    I am an Israeli academic who will be visiting the US to lecture in January. I will be in Philly and have a few days before my next stop during which I would like to hike. From my web reconnoitering, it looks like the AT near the MD border might be a good place for 3-4 days of day hiking (maybe stay in the Iron Master hostel).

    I would love to hear from anybody who knows what to expect in this area in January in terms of weather and equipment for day hiking. Need winter specific boots, crampons, snowshoes?


    Suggestions for different areas also welcome (needs to be near cheap lodging).

    Any and all advice most welcome.

    thanks,
    NM

  2. #2
    Registered User evansprater's Avatar
    Join Date
    10-01-2012
    Location
    Asheville, North Carolina
    Age
    32
    Posts
    156

    Default PA in january

    Quote Originally Posted by nmoses View Post
    Hello there ladies and gents,I am an Israeli academic who will be visiting the US to lecture in January. I will be in Philly and have a few days before my next stop during which I would like to hike. From my web reconnoitering, it looks like the AT near the MD border might be a good place for 3-4 days of day hiking (maybe stay in the Iron Master hostel).I would love to hear from anybody who knows what to expect in this area in January in terms of weather and equipment for day hiking. Need winter specific boots, crampons, snowshoes?Suggestions for different areas also welcome (needs to be near cheap lodging).Any and all advice most welcome.thanks,NM
    if I make it that far I may be in PA in January as well! I'm not from the area, but having grown up in the US I'm sure we can expect lots of snow, a few snowstorms, and extremely cold weather, especially at night. It's going to be one hell of an experience.

  3. #3

    Default

    i'm from gettysburg and you chose a very easy section of trail for 3 - 4 days. the weather varies greatly from year to year, you could have below freezing temperatures and snow, or like last year, 60 degree, sunny days. if i were you, i would plan for the worst and hope for the best. as far as cheap lodging, ****, i don't know what to tell you. are hostels even open in january? look for a motel 6 or maybe try couchsurfing.com (or is it .net?) you could get hooked up with a free spot to crash.



  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-06-2012
    Location
    Boyds, MD
    Age
    50
    Posts
    3

    Default

    I'm a bit late on this thread, but I hike this area pretty frequently in the winter. My preferred conditions would be 10-15 inches of new snow, which kind of feels like you're walking on the moon because everything is soft and quiet and clean. And, dressed properly, you should not get cold if you keep moving. My legs and feet remain perfectly warm and dry, like walking on the beach.

    The gear I use for winter day hiking is: waterproof boots, gaiters, rain pants and rain jacket worn over top of polyester fleece pullover and pants, and a polyester T-shirt and briefs under everything else. ALL of these items I consider essential. This setup protects me down to 15-20F, even if it's quite windy, snowing/raining, etc., but it wouldn't be enough for extended stops. Usually I keep moving with no more than 10-15 minute stops if it's cold.

    The main thing you don't want to do is get to warm and start sweating heavily, because that will lead to getting cold. At the start of the hike you want to feel cool, because your body will warm up by 10-15 degrees F (5C) or so.

    I also carry gloves, although I tend to walk with my hands in my rain jacket pockets mostly, which keeps them warm enough even without gloves unless it's really cold. I carry the CMI instep crampons with neoprene straps, that have pretty long/pointy spikes (compared to some of the cheaper ones) and these work pretty well for icy spots, although if it's just snow you may not need to wear crampons (but I *always* carry them, because conditions may be totally different within the span of a couple of miles, on the different side of the same hill, or at the top of a mountain vs. at the base, even though they're not super tall mountains). Still if you don't have crampons you can usually turn around / abort a day hike if you run into unexpected ice.

++ New Posts ++

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

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