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Re: [at-l] departures

Could be a lifesaver?  I, too, love winter hiking and camping but have 
wondered what I'd do about heavy drifting or one of those snows that just 
keeps coming down...  I suppose there are so many road crossings it would be 
hard to be in real trouble, but if you're going that early I can see how 
you'd consider it.  Weather radios are lighter...

>From: Big G <big_g@linuxfreak.com>
>To: at-l-digest@backcountry.net
>CC: wthorneloe@excite.com
>Subject: Re: [at-l] departures
>Date: Fri, 07 May 1999 12:34:48 -0400
> > > Anyone else thinking about starting in February?  Anyone else start in
> > > February in years gone by?
> > >
> >
> > The past few years have shown a lot of people leaving Springer pretty 
> > This year was a particularly good year, with very few snows and only 
> > cold snaps. There was one brief snow in the 3rd week of March. Of 
> > 1992 had the blizzard that endangered a heck of a lot of hikers in the
> > Smokies. Yet, the NC bomber started his marathon "hike" in Feb 97, and
> > apparently has been moving along with few hinderances.
> >
> > A benefit of leaving in February includes fewer bugs, fewer people (I'm 
> > sure which is more irritating), and more selection at Neel's Gap when 
> > figure out what you really needed when you started. A problem is the 
> > for more clothing, hence weight, to deal with the cold and weather that 
> > likely. It would be a very good idea to learn survival skills regarding
> > snow, ice, freezing rain, and cold _before_ loading you pack. 
> > kills, and enjoys a snack on fingers, toes, and noses.
> >
>Thanks for the info.  I've been culling journal wisdom from early
>starters trying to figure out what the environment will be like.
>Personally, I enjoy winter camping and backpacking but as I am
>originally from Ohio and now Michigan I just don't know what to expect
>on the southern AT in February and March.
>Currently my great debate revolves around whether or not to take my
>snowshoes along in the beginning.  No journal writer that I've read has
>done so but a few have mentioned (one in UPPERCASE) how they wished for
>a pair.  One journaler mentioned seeing a snowshoer cruising merrily
>along so I know some people see the merit.  Anyway, my distilled
>thoughts on the subject are 1) snowshoes aren't needed, but 2) shoeshoes
>don't have to be worn all day to become worth their weight, and 3) I
>really want a picture of me standing on top of a drift next to someone
>postholing their way through it. :)
>Any thoughts?  I can't guarantee that I'll heed all advice but I would
>like to hear it so I can make more of an informed decision.
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