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AT January Thru
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Lee Davis
(mldavis) - F

Locale: Southeast
AT January Thru on 12/01/2006 08:58:35 MST Print View

Please take a minute to destruct my gear list. It's a bit heavier than I thought it would turn out. Some items are obvious candidates for lightening up, so if you have helpful ideas I'd like to hear them.

As a matter of backgound, I'm 5ft4in, 115lbs. I'm not trying to post super high mileage days as my time limit is fairly flexible. I haven't quite had time to complete all the fields, but it's mostly there.

Gear List

Edited by mldavis on 12/01/2006 09:05:14 MST.

Roger B
(rogerb) - MLife

Locale: Here and there
Re: AT January Thru on 12/01/2006 09:07:08 MST Print View

I assume NOBO is that correct?

Lee Davis
(mldavis) - F

Locale: Southeast
NOBO on 12/01/2006 09:12:25 MST Print View

Yeah, sorry. Also, I'm from NC and hike here mostly in the winter for what that's worth.

Shawn Basil
(Bearpaw) - F

Locale: Southeast
gaiters? on 12/01/2006 12:38:19 MST Print View

You're good to go for traction with the instep crampons, but you may want to consider gaiters for your trail runners. They'll only help marginally with snow, but when you hit mud the extra 2.5 ounces for a pair of shorties could go a long way toward having decent socks and shoes for the rest of the hike. As well as saving your sanity in loose/piny/sandy stretches.

Lee Davis
(mldavis) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: gaiters? on 12/01/2006 12:49:25 MST Print View

I was debating gaiters, but they seem redundant in cold weather if I am going with the overshoes. At what point, geographically do you think they'd be advantageous. Planning on ~5 months to give you an idea of where I'll be and when.

Shawn Basil
(Bearpaw) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: gaiters? on 12/02/2006 11:02:58 MST Print View

By the time you're approaching New England (May I'm assuming), you'll likely want to cashier the overboots. But my memory still lingers strong from 99, a drought year, in which Massachusetts was still fairly marshy even in July. In damp spring conditions, I would expect you'll have to deal with considerable muck in many places. Even with seal skinz to keep your feet somewhat day, the mud entering your shoes will likely decrease the lifespan of both shoes and sealskinz.

In New Hampshire, the loose gravelly portions of the trail, which are common even below treeline, would have driven me crazy without gaiters, and I wore boots, not trail runners.

I admit I'm a big fan of gaiters and I wear them most all the time when I hike, but I HATE getting grit in my shoes. In mud, they are just about a necessity with low-cut shoes. I prefer the slightly heavier velcro types such as the OR Flex-Tex Gaiter or REI Mistral. They are water resistant, not waterproof, but do fine in muddy or gritty conditions. The Integral Deigns Event SHort Gaiter are waterproof and a bit lighter, but I found them such a pain in the butt when I used them hiking the COlorado Trail this past summer that I hesitated to wear them at times. If you'd like a pair, I'd sell them to you cheap!

But seriously, in the later portions of your though-hike, you'll likely find gaiters very helpful.

Edited by Bearpaw on 12/02/2006 11:04:43 MST.

Douglas Frick
(Otter) - MLife

Locale: Wyoming
Re: Re: Re: gaiters? on 12/02/2006 11:56:07 MST Print View

> I admit I'm a big fan of gaiters and I wear them most all the time when I hike, but I HATE getting grit in my shoes. In mud, they are just about a necessity with low-cut shoes.

Me too; I agree. If you're wearing non-waterproof shoes, so that you are counting on your shoes drying out after getting wet, water-resistant/-proof gaiters will not help them dry quickly. I've switched to simBLISSity's LevaGaiter (1.8 oz/pr), which are light, very breathable, stay on the shoe without requiring a cord underneath the sole, and wear very well. But they don't let water in easily--my GoreTex XCR shoes wetted out in the rain, while the tops of my socks were still dry.

Edited by Otter on 12/02/2006 12:00:37 MST.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: Re: gaiters? on 12/03/2006 03:17:23 MST Print View

Hiking New England, i wear gaiters all of the time with low-cut trail runners and much of the time if i'm using 28-32oz light hikers (6" height).

They help keep me dry from rain, as well as from wet overgrown foliage. They also help to keep out a lot of the mud that can be both ubiquitous and copious at times. They keep dust and trail grit out on some trails in the heat of summer.

I use mainly Montbell gaiters, either their UL GTX gaiters for longer term or heavy rain conditions or their Schoeller mini stretch gaiters for dry dusty conditions, wet foliage, and light rain.

Edited by pj on 12/03/2006 03:26:02 MST.

Lee Davis
(mldavis) - F

Locale: Southeast
dirty girl gaiters on 12/04/2006 10:03:43 MST Print View

Any thoughts on the dirty girl gaiters. And Shawn, what did you not like about the IDs? Could they be modified easily enough with velcro to negate the cord?

Shawn Basil
(Bearpaw) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: dirty girl gaiters on 12/04/2006 12:38:31 MST Print View

The ID event gaiter were pretty close fitting, and I have a thick leg. The fact that they were simple tube gaiters meant that 1) I had to pull the snug gaiter as high up onto my calf as possible to pull on my mid-cut Lowa Renegades and the gaiter somewhat got in the way, and 2) It was impossible to pull on or take off the gaiter without removing the foot wear, and 3) I prefer to tuck my rain pants inside a gaiter when crossing snowpack, so that snow doesn't push the gaiter up and rip up my lower leg upon postholing. I couldn't effectively tuck in my rainpants with the narrowness of the gaiter.

If I were to cut open the gaiter and create a velcro closure system, I would have even less room. The gaiters were OK with low-cuts, but I still prefer the more stretchable REI Mistal gaiters or the bloused OR Rocky Mountain Lows.

Graeme Finley
(gfinley001) - F

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: dirty girl gaiters on 12/04/2006 15:30:45 MST Print View

I've taken the dirty girl gaiters on one week-long trip and they entirely lived up to expectations - very light (1.5 ounces) and breathable, but not rugged. Mine kept out dirt/pebbles etc and helped keep at least the rear half of my feet clean, but they got some punctures when I did some bushwacking.

For $15 though you can't really go wrong.

Jeffrey Kuchera

Locale: Great Lakes
Back 2 the grill again. My offerings..... on 12/04/2006 20:17:54 MST Print View

-Ditch the pack cover and stick with the pack liner. My pack would still get wet when I used one. I have seen wind suck them off of a pack before as well.

-Ditch the gatorade bottle and go with a good old nalgene that can take repeated doses of boiling water which is good for weather where hot tea and toasty water bottles in the foot of your bag is a must.

-Consider an MSR Simmer Lite white gas stove with a titanium fuel bottle. These thing will be invaluable in cold weather. Good for heating a lot of cold, cold water very quickly which will be necessary.

-Make sure your mitts are waterproof.

-Forget gaiters you have overboots.

-The seal skinz seem kind of redundant considering the N.E.O.S. overboots. I agree with the overboots but suggest ditching the seal skinz.

-I might also consider down booties.

-Keep the stays in the pack.

-A light cup may be a good thing for collecting water.

-Ditch one of the candles and keep the other candle,lighter,and matches.

-Handwarmers are a great emergency item.

-I would ditch the heavy weight tights.

-Consider a lightweight and highly breathable bivy made of pertex or epic or something for use in shelters for wind protection and use in tent for extra protection from condensation which is poopy for down bags.

-Ditch the cap and swap it for an ear warmer band type thingy.

-Keep the stuff sack for extra clothes. I repeat keep it.

-You may want to consider carrying maps which are not necessary as the trail is well marked but sure as shoot could save your hide during an early starting Nobo hike. They can help you if you need to bail out or with planning an alternate route in some necessary instances. I would at least consider carrying maps for the months of January through March.

-Also I sectioned up a Wingfoot guidebook and found it to be invaluable during my thru.

I finished a Sobo on Dec 31st before and you are sure to encounter conditions similiar to those I encountered and probably some that will beat what I saw. Your list is extremely well thought out. I hope my thoughts may be of some help. Keep in mind you are best aware of your needs and abilities when selecting your rig. On the flip soliciting advice is also a good thing to do.

Best Wishes, -jeff aka frankenfeet

Edited by frankenfeet on 12/04/2006 20:48:00 MST.

Lee Davis
(mldavis) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Back 2 the grill again. My offerings..... on 12/05/2006 07:26:05 MST Print View

Thanks for the feedback.

Really, I don't know why I keep the pack cover anyway, it does always seem to collect water in the bottom, but then again I feel like it keeps my pack cloth from absorbing water and getting much heavier. I'm really still not decided on this one.

I had though of bringing a 2 cup nalgene instead of a mug, but I guess this would be redundent. I had been on the fence of taking the regular nalgene, but you're right about it standing up to the rigors of hot and freezing.

I had the clothes sack highlighted mostly because I had thought of replacing it with a silnylon one, but I don't feel like they're good enough for things I really want to keep dry.

I have forgotten to add maps and bits of the data book to my base weight, mostly out of laziness. But I like looking at maps for the fun of it if nothing else, so I'm planning on having them mailed to me occassionally.

Do you, or anyone for that matter, have any opinions on the titanium goat dwr bivies? I am really thinking of getting one since the price is nice and I'm on a budget.

thanks again. any bit of advice is always welcome