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AT section: Springer to NOC

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  • Ray Garlington
    We cut the trip short by 30 miles due to looming bad weather on day 7. It was supposed to be socked in for about 4 days starting on april 30.... Couldn t see
    Message 1 of 2 , May 6, 2004
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      We cut the trip short by 30 miles due to looming bad weather on day
      7. It was supposed to be socked in for about 4 days starting on
      april 30.... Couldn't see hiking any more in the rain/fog/wind. We
      had 5 days of great weather, 1 quite bad day (day 3) and one misty,
      foggy day (day 7).

      ===========
      Trip Summary

      day 0: April 23, 2004

      Day Site miles from Springer segment

      0 Stover Creek 2.5 2.5
      1 Goock Mountain 14.7 12.2
      2 Blood Mountain 28.3 13.6
      3 Low Gap 41.3 13.0
      4 Tray Mountain 56.2 14.9
      5 Plum Orchard Gap 71.1 14.9
      6 Carter Gap 90.9 19.8
      7 Rock Gap Shelter 103.0 12.1


      New things this time:
      Pedometer: I attached an inexpensive pedometer to my pack to see
      how accurate it might be for trail use. The short story is that
      works ok. Just set a pace length that is 10-11% shorter than your
      pace length for neighborhood walking and you'll be pretty close.
      Also, the cheap pedometers need to be positioned very close to
      vertical, otherwise they will miss steps.

      Water treatment: Usually a water pump guy, I decided to try
      household bleach as a disinfectant. Although this gets a lot of
      negative coverage, the CDC, Red Cross, EPA and many emergency
      management groups recommend it as an emergency water treatment
      technique. It is safe and certainly not poisonous despite what you
      may read on the internet. Also, there are a couple of authoritative
      references that say bleach is more effective against giardia than
      iodine; however, both are marginal against crypto. Miox and
      chlorine dioxide (aqua mira) are supposedly better against giardia
      and crypto but require long waits for effectiveness vs crypto. The
      short of it is, I felt comfortable with bleach treatment w/30
      minute wait IF the water source was a good one. Low-in-the-water-
      shed streams or cloudy water sources made me wish I had my pump.
      Saw lots of aqua mira in use this year.

      Water bags: Before I left, I saw a recommendation for stand up zip
      locks when working with water. A very good idea. What you do is
      grab a couple of zip-locks full of water from the stream, then
      retreat to a comfortable location to pump & or treat the water.
      This also helps if the water source is such that you can't get your
      platypus under the pipe, spout or in the shallow spring head. I
      couldn't find the standup zip locks, so I got some hefty zip locks
      and added a strip of duct tape around the circumference near the zip
      mechanism. I then taped a short length of rope that could be hooked
      or held to stabilize the opening during pumping.

      Moonbow gearskin: With some training, I ended up liking this for
      loads less than about 30 pounds. I think it is marginal for long
      hikes and 35 to 40 pounds. I fashioned a large snake skin that
      would encompass most of my hammock, GI shell, insulator bag of
      feathers, sleeping bag, and 100 weight fleece hat, top, bottom &
      socks. In the morning, I'd pull the snakeskin over one end of the
      hammock, then stuff everything up into it. I'd then place this
      assembly on the gearskin, place the stuff sacks on top, fold the
      bottom of the hammock (with respect to the gearskin) up, then the
      top of the hammock down, buckle everything up and then compress
      the straps. Once I got used to it, packing was fast, unpacking was
      faster and I could get to everything pretty fast (if I remembered
      where I put it).

      Record keeping: I started writing down times as I passed landmarks
      along the trail (e.g. gaps, peaks, crossing trails, etc). It is
      pretty easy, and helps greatly in remembering when & where things
      happened, however, when the weather got wet, the mere fact that the
      notepad was inside a plasic bag, made me forgo record keeping
      duties. Once I got out of the habit, I didn't restart even when the
      weather cleared. Perhaps hiking and self discipline are inversely
      related.

      I have a few of the pictures I took here (for a short time):

      http://www.garlington.biz/Ray/AT2004web/

      Let me know if you have questions.
      Ray
    • dlfrost_1
      ... [...] ... zip ... hooked ... [...] ... ZipLoc used to sell pleated-bottom versions of their freezer bags in half-gallon and gallon sizes. These were
      Message 2 of 2 , May 7, 2004
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        --- In hammockcamping@yahoogroups.com, "Ray Garlington"
        <rgarling@y...> wrote:
        > New things this time:
        [...]
        > Water bags: Before I left, I saw a recommendation for stand up zip
        > locks when working with water. A very good idea. What you do is
        > grab a couple of zip-locks full of water from the stream, then
        > retreat to a comfortable location to pump & or treat the water.
        > This also helps if the water source is such that you can't get your
        > platypus under the pipe, spout or in the shallow spring head. I
        > couldn't find the standup zip locks, so I got some hefty zip locks
        > and added a strip of duct tape around the circumference near the
        zip
        > mechanism. I then taped a short length of rope that could be
        hooked
        > or held to stabilize the opening during pumping.
        [...]
        > I have a few of the pictures I took here (for a short time):
        >
        > http://www.garlington.biz/Ray/AT2004web/
        >
        > Let me know if you have questions.
        > Ray

        ZipLoc used to sell pleated-bottom versions of their freezer bags in
        half-gallon and gallon sizes. These were perfect for backpacking.
        Haven't been able to find them lately though. :-/

        One of the things that's on my Try This Out List is using the
        packcover garbage bag (which normally covers the pack when hung up at
        night) to carry water by laying it out flat, gathering it up into a
        sack, and tying it together with a constrictor knot or two. (Just
        pouring water in probably won't work as the seams will start leaking
        and tear the bag up.) You could get a gallon or two into that for
        filtering, bathing or laundering purposes.

        Enjoyed the pics, BTW.

        Doug Frost
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