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mid april to mid may hiking suggestions please...
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darrell johnson
(bombay) - MLife

Locale: in the woods
mid april to mid may hiking suggestions please... on 02/06/2012 14:54:57 MST Print View

Unforuntalely 5 months off for our pct thru hike can't be accommodated this year, but we still have a hard earned four weeks off for hiking, so for our own sanity and in preparation for next's year's hike can we hike the entire oregon section from mid april to mid May?

We hiked the pct's first 400 miles in 2011, the entire AT way back in 2005 and lots of trails over here in Europe and Australasia.
We are "happy" to do 30 mile days when necessary day after day, especially to get maxium hiking in our precious time off work.

all ideas very welcome.

triple crown wanabes

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
Re: mid april to mid may hiking suggestions please... on 02/06/2012 15:23:04 MST Print View

Have you considered the Grand Enchantment Trail? You could complete the entire trail in that 4 weeks if you stuck to your 30 mile/day rate. I think many GET hikers start around this time. April and May gets you out of the really bad heat in Arizona and New Mexico, but late enough that much of the snow pack is starting to shed.

darrell johnson
(bombay) - MLife

Locale: in the woods
GET looks good to us on 02/06/2012 15:50:59 MST Print View

thanks Eugene,
we found the GET last night via the wonders of the internet
(never heard of it before)

It certainly fits our way of hiking and sense of adventure, have you hiked it yourself?


Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
mid april to mid may hiking suggestions please.. on 02/06/2012 15:58:48 MST Print View

Mid-April to mid-May is still the middle of winter for most of the Oregon PCT. In an "average" snow year, you won't have relatively snow-free hiking until early to mid July for the higher sections (Crater Lake, Mt. Thielsen, Three Sisters, Mt. Hood).

I suggest the southwestern US, where there are several long trails. You could do the New Mexico section of the CDT, which will give you a start on your third Triple Crown trail. Depending on how much snowpack and when it melts, your time frame might still be a bit early for some of the higher elevation sections.

For future years, try to get July, August or September free for your hiking vacation for relatively snow-free travel.

Here's a plot of the current year, prior year and 30-year average precipitation and snow water depth for the Mt. Hood Snotel, elevation 5370 feet:

Please note that the depth is snow water equivalent--assume the actual snow is at least twice that depth. Note also that the average peak snow depth occurs about April 28 (in the middle of your time frame). The average snow depth will be about 120 inches (3 meters) and there will still be considerable avalanche danger in the steeper sections, generally lasting well into May. Areas such as the Three Sisters and Crater Lake are a couple thousand feet (600 meters) higher than the Mt. Hood Snotel.

darrell johnson
(bombay) - MLife

Locale: in the woods
cdt section on 02/07/2012 08:08:16 MST Print View

mary thanks for the input, we will definitely look at the southern cdt section, sadly the booking of leave is very restrictive, and we have to book in the anticipation of a pct thru hike
cheers d

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
GET on 02/07/2012 09:47:55 MST Print View


I have not hiked the GET, only the alternate section through the Gila Wilderness and the Sandia section, which is amazing country. I know three individuals who have done the trail in its entirety and any one of them would be more than happy to assist you with planning if you decide on the GET.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
mid april to mid may hiking suggestions please... on 02/07/2012 09:50:41 MST Print View

I'd love to do the GET. Sadly, my wife does not share my interest.