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View Full Version : It's hot out! Do u still go hiking?



coldfeet
06-08-2005, 03:14 PM
Just curious...does the heat make you cancel hikes?

This is my first year hiking and I never got to experience upper 80 degree weather.

sapblatt
06-08-2005, 03:16 PM
It has never stopped me, but everyone is different. The older I get the more I like the heat. If you often find yourself suffering in heat then you should think about not hiking, or at least stay on hikes that are more in the forest.
Another thing to consider is hydration. some people are really bad at drinking enough. I have easily downed 5-6 liters on an 8 plus hour hike in opressive conditions. Everything you sweat out you need to replace!

SAR-EMT40
06-08-2005, 03:24 PM
I feel exactly the opposite. I hate the heat and especially the humidity. I love 40 - 50 degree nights when camping and if it gets above 75 degrees while hiking I know that it is going to be unpleasant. I still do it though. Just bring lots of water and ways to obtain it. :D

Keith

Halite
06-08-2005, 03:31 PM
I'm not a big fan of super hot, humid hikes, but I wouldn't cancel a hike due to heat. As others have said, I'd be sure to stay hydrated. Also, pace myself so I don't blow a gasket. Starting earlier when the day is cooler and skipping full sun exposure in the afternoon makes a difference.

Coldfeet, with this weather I think you'll be changing your moniker :D

Tom Rankin
06-08-2005, 03:34 PM
Just curious...does the heat make you cancel hikes?

This is my first year hiking and I never got to experience upper 80 degree weather.

Just did Wilson and Breadloaf in Vermont, and it was about 90 at the bottom. Of course, at the top it's a good bit cooler (but watch out for those bugs!!!).

I seem to remember it averages about 5.5 degrees (F) cooler per 1000 feet of elevation gain.

Anyway, wear light colored, loose fitting clothes, make sure you have enough water, bring the sun block, wear a light hat if you're exposed to the sun, freeze a water bottle the night before the hike, it all helps.

One of the toughest hikes I ever did was Allen around July 4th. The temp was about 90+, the humidity was high, and bugs plagued us the entire way! But we made it! :D

lumberzac
06-08-2005, 03:38 PM
I donít cancel trips due to heat, though I might if the mercury is supposed to get over 100, but the heat does slow me down tremendously.

MEB
06-08-2005, 03:39 PM
Oh Yeah..I'll still go even if it's hot..but I do take lots of extra water, give myself extra time and I'll take advantage of any cool water source along the way.

sp1936
06-08-2005, 03:53 PM
I never cancel a hike because of the weather. I often change plans during a hike because of the weather, however, usually for safety rather than comfort.

Steve

Mike P.
06-08-2005, 03:59 PM
Since my mail man does not deliver in bad weather, I'll take their motto, I hike in all the weather, now a snowstorm hike may end up as a South Carter Trip instead of an Adams Trip & a deluge may make a Washington Trip a Wildcats trip but their will be hiking.

Okay well maybe not in a Hurricane or strong Tropical Storm, but I've gone the day after when they were whipping at the mountains the night before. Besides i heat it's never as hot up high.

Neil
06-08-2005, 04:58 PM
Before reading through the replies on this thread I was certain that nobody on this forum cancels due to the heat. So far, it looks like I'm right.

I also hate the heat except when I'm out running or hiking and I go into a head space where I'm immune to the discomfort. Too bad it dosn't work with bugs. I go through water, or should I say water goes through me like I was a sieve. My record is 8 quarts in a day. At that rate it's a good idea to learn about the hazards of hyponatremia. I usually carry Pringles (for medicinal purposes only:)).

If you are like my son and have hardly any sweat glands you will turn beet red if you exert yourself in the intense heat. Heat stroke is a definite risk.

BTW, it's nice to carry a change of clothing for the summit. Makes me feel like a new man!

blueridge
06-08-2005, 05:01 PM
We go to the Smokies in North Carolina every June, last year it was so hot and humid I took off my t-shirt as was able to wring out about 60cc's or so of sweat from the shirt. Hiking down south in the summer is tough due to the heat and the insane backwoods locals ;)

Rick
06-08-2005, 05:04 PM
In my 20's and early 30's the heat didn't bother me at all. I looked forward to hot summer trips. I was in my mid 30's when I backpacked across Joshua Tree one brutally hot spring when it got to 108. After that, my heat tolerance diminished somewhat.

I'll still do some 8-10 mile dayhikes in 85-90 degree weather, but I don't really plan backpacking trips as much any more in July/August. I spend those months paddling and biking. :)

prino
06-08-2005, 05:06 PM
Remember to Drink Loads.....The Pringle idea's good too! Salt is essential.

^MtnMike^
06-08-2005, 05:31 PM
Starting earlier when the day is cooler and skipping full sun exposure in the afternoon makes a difference.

This is basically my M.O. on hot days. I try to start before sunrise and pick hikes on west facing slopes! Maximize the shady time! [:D]

^MtnMike^

spaddock
06-08-2005, 06:16 PM
BTW, it's nice to carry a change of clothing for the summit. Makes me feel like a new man!

In summer it doesn't have to be the "well thought out base layer change" like it was at -25C :D

coldfeet
06-08-2005, 06:29 PM
Like the frozen water bottle idea.....didn't think of temp change due to elevation gain...oh well I'll keep on reading stories and try to learn..embarassing you'd think I'd know because of the number of posts. (200 of those were about winter camping)

kmac
06-08-2005, 06:49 PM
I was just hiking this past weekend--13.5 miles...it was very sunny,warm and humid........we carried just enough water .... be sure you carry your water filter.... there's nothing like a cold refreshing drink form a nearby stream......i always underestimate the amount of water i will need...i have always needed to use my filter...what a great invention...worth the weight.

cp2000
06-08-2005, 07:16 PM
I hate the heat, but I go hiking in it anyway. I usually (because i live so close to the whites) will hike insted of going on a road ride. :D

marty
06-08-2005, 07:19 PM
I never let the heat stop me. I just hydrate more and put sunscreen on my balding head more frequently.

jbreen
06-08-2005, 07:24 PM
I hike in the heat, but only because it's when my family joins me...otherwise, anything below 50 is good for me with the lower the better.

As for the frozen bottles -- I did have one time when ice plus bottle parkas slowed the melting such that it could not keep up with my initial intake.

Jim

rhihn
06-08-2005, 07:40 PM
Extreme heat has almost never stopped us -- although I don't really know how to define that. It rarely gets unbearable in the Northeast. Hot is one thing, humidity is another, and I can stand more heat if it's not too humid. We've never cancelled due to heat. The closest we've come was on a trip to Mt. Marshall (Adirondacks). We made it about 2/3 of the way up. We knew we were becoming dehydrated, but the bugs were as much an issue that day as the weather.

amstony
06-08-2005, 08:05 PM
I like the heat and the extended daylight hours, especially for the longer drives. When I hike this time of year I can travel light, carry less, and move much faster. :) No need to worry about layering, very heavy packs, blizzards, etc.

I bring plenty of water, snacks, leave home and start hikes relatively early, especially for a long hike. I can carry power bars, GU, and other stuff and not worry about it freezing too. :( I plan on being back below treeline by late afternoon to avoid the thunderstorms that can brew up this time of year.

I don't mind the cold weather hikes but the generally crappy driving weather, short days amd winter work requirements limit what I can get done hiking wise. For winter I focus on long runs, the gym and a shorter hike in Mass like Mt. Watatic or some parks.

WhiteMTHike
06-08-2005, 08:09 PM
It rarely gets unbearable in the Northeast. Hot is one thing, humidity is another, and I can stand more heat if it's not too humid.

I feel the same way. A dry heat is fine but humidity is what makes me miserable. I don't mind working up a good sweat but I hate the bugs that humidity brings in with it. Give me a cool crisp fall day anytime and I'll hike the day away. :)

Rik
06-08-2005, 08:23 PM
I miss winter. But I won't miss a chance to hike so hot it is for a few hikes this time of year. Frozen water works great. If it melts slow I add water from another source. Usually the bottle I start with.

Hakuna Matata
06-08-2005, 08:45 PM
We freeze a water bottle and slide it in next to our hydration bladder. It helps to keep your bladder cool and that half frozen bottle of water on the summit is great. I also put a washcloth in a zip-lock bag. When we pass a cool mountain stream we use it to cool down. It feels so good to just hold it on your face or back of your neck. It's also good to wipe down after the hike and put on dry (not-so-smelly) clothes for the ride home.

Neil
06-08-2005, 08:55 PM
I like the heat and the extended daylight hours, especially for the longer drives.
This time of year I have to get it out of my head that I'm wasting daylight when I'm still on the road after the sun has come up.


I miss winter.
I know what you mean. How many shopping days until Dec. 21? I hope the gate is still open when I really get Donaldson. BTW, you're coming :D

forty8
06-08-2005, 09:14 PM
I went over the Tripyramids on Fathers' Day weekend about seven years ago with a full pack. It was HOT HOT HOT. I thought I had plenty of water, but I was wrong. I got dehydrated, suffered leg cramps, and to add insult to injury, the black flies nearly carried away what was left. I wouldn't ever cancel a hike because of the heat, but I will make sure all the bottles are full before I pass that last water source.

spaddock
06-08-2005, 09:26 PM
I hope the gate is still open when I really get Donaldson. BTW, you're coming :D

Count me in too! Hopefully by that time I'll be done my regular 46. I miss my snowshoes already....

I won't cancel a hike if its super hot, but I'll reconsider if I think the bugs are gonna be horrendous.


-Shayne

beverly
06-08-2005, 09:43 PM
On hot days I freeze my liter nalgene bottle of water/electrolye drink the night before.

On Saturday it was pretty warm as we hiked up Basin Brook to the Slide and then to the top of Basin. Rock-hopping on the brook led us to some ice scultptures that were rapidly melting. It was very refreshing to break off a piece of ice and use it to to cool my head and face. The temperature was markedy cooler in the brook and stayed that way until we got up to the slide. I would have thrown some ice from the brook into my nalgene, but I forgot to bring the gin to sterilize the ice! :D

dougb
06-08-2005, 09:50 PM
The heat doesn't bother me either, but I do hydrate continually. The heat is why they have those colorful packs of Gatorade in EMS. I find that slurping down a Nalgene bottle of Gatorade at about noon has a lot of benifit. On long trips in summer, I take a package for each day.

jjo
06-08-2005, 10:10 PM
I love hiking too much to let hot weather get in the way but there are times, I realize I should better judgment. (start earlier, more fluids, etc)

TCD
06-08-2005, 10:54 PM
Just came back from 5 days climbing in Red Rocks. The approach hikes were short (1-2 miles, 800 feet of vertical), but it was 105F every day, no clouds, no shade.

Lots of water, and some electrolytes, and sloooooow the pace.

truepatriot09
06-09-2005, 06:44 AM
All the hydration in the world can't make me enjoy a hot day with bugs on the trail. I have a tendancy to be warm all the time. I hike in the summer but I'm very picky about the weather and while I probably wouldn't cancel a hike due to heat, I would definitely not plan a hike if the forecast is for humid weather over 90 degrees...like I said before, winter is for the trail, summer is for the kayak.

Adk_dib
06-09-2005, 07:04 AM
One thing I do is to carry a bandana. I soak it in a stream and wrap it around my neck. I once filled my hydration pack with ice when I did algonquin. I was sucking air on the way down. when I got to the car, my hydration pack was so well insulated it was all ice cubes! :eek:

Rivet
06-09-2005, 07:19 AM
Here's a tip. Don't freeze an entire 2 liter bottle of water. It'll take forever to thaw out. ;)

It's not the best to hike in stiffling heat. I try to hike in the morning hours and do shorter hikes.

I guess you can also try hiking at night when it's the coolest temps. Also less bugs at night.

Pete Hogan
06-09-2005, 07:34 AM
When temperature and humidity add up to 160 (a suggestion from an ancient 46er), I think twice about starting an extended day (more than 10 miles and/or 3000í ascent). Water ("a pint a pound the world around") does make a difference in keeping core temperature in check, but also exacerbates the situation with extra weight. If you are packing 4 liters of water that adds 8 pounds of water weight to your pack!

This is similar to the winter precaution of starting a snowshoe trip above timberline when ambient trailhead temperatures are below zero (knowing that elevation will decrease temperature by 4 degrees for every 1000 feet) and wind chills may further compromise safety.

Gris
06-09-2005, 07:37 AM
Having lived my entire life of Florida I just had to weigh in on this one. "HEAT" is a relative concept folks! Down here, with our high humidty, we do NOT consider it really hot until the temp gets to 90+ plus high humidty. And even then we still play 10-S and do all our other outdoor activity. The key, as said by others, is to just pace yourself, slow down and hydrate. Yet, even being a Florida heat child, when it's at all hot in the mountains I look for hikes with the afternoon trek along a stream and I too like to start super early in the summer. :D

giggy
06-09-2005, 07:44 AM
yep - lose the shirt - drink water,

when in the army - used to train in alabama in the summer (107 - 90% humidity ) was the norm in july/august -

the northeast doesn't even come close on its hottest days.

doen't bother me at all - either does minus 20. - adapt, adjust, FIDO (F' it - drive on)

Bjarni
06-09-2005, 08:03 AM
In early July a couple of years ago my two teenage sons and I were going to climb Madison on a day when the temperature in Boston reached 101, there was high humidity, and the temperature on Mt Washington set a record. We'd gone about a mile up the Osgood trail and I was totally drenched. This was supposed to be fun, and we were all not having a good time.

So we turned around, drove to Gorham, rented a hotel room, and ate pizza and watched a Sponge Bob marathon in delightful air conditioning for the rest of the day.

jfb
06-09-2005, 09:50 AM
I usually won't plan hikes for hot days, but if I've already made plans then I'll go anyways and suffer through it. I have returned home earlier than planned because of the heat.

WhiteMTHike
06-09-2005, 10:03 AM
yep - lose the shirt - drink water,

when in the army - used to train in alabama in the summer (107 - 90% humidity ) was the norm in july/august -

the northeast doesn't even come close on its hottest days.



I remember those days. Good old Fort Mclellan, Alabama the most humid place I've ever been to. When I think back to those days, a good hike in New England during the summer no matter how hot/humid seems pretty tame.

I normally hike into early June then stop until the second week of Septemeber. Spring hiking is just fine but I still love my fall hiking the best. :)

Tom Rankin
06-09-2005, 10:14 AM
used to train in alabama in the summer (107 - 90% humidity ) was the norm in july/august - the northeast doesn't even come close on its hottest days.

A common misconception. This web site,

http://www.usatoday.com/weather/wheat7.htm

lists Alabama's all time high as 112, New York as 108, New Jersey 110, Pennsylvania 111, (and interestingly, Minnesota is 114, and Florida is 109).

I will grant that the South stays hotter longer, but the temps in the summer on a large part of the North American continent are pretty much the same.

Bjarni
06-09-2005, 10:34 AM
The 107 degree "normal" Alabama high was obviously an exaggeration (or the effect of fried brain cells.

However, average summertime temperatures differ significantly over North america, as I think most people are very aware. Anomalous extremes are not germane. NOA reports the average July temperature in Montgomery and Mobile Alabama are 81.8 and 81.5 respectively; for Boston, 73.9. That's a big difference.

DougPaul
06-09-2005, 10:59 AM
NOA reports the average July temperature in Montgomery and Mobile Alabama are 81.8 and 81.5 respectively; for Boston, 73.9.
Mobile and Boston are both coastal, Montgomery is inland. Sea water temps north of Cape Cod tend to be rather cold.

Never been in Alabama, but towns as little as 10 mi inland from Boston often have noticably different weather.

In any case, I don't hike in average temps--I hike in the temps present on the hiking day and location. Hot and humid is uncomfortable, but I slow down and drink more as is appropriate. Also add electrolytes to my water.

Hot and dry has its problems too--I've desert hiked at 113F. Not much shade, either.

Doug

giggy
06-09-2005, 11:54 AM
The 107 degree "normal" Alabama high was obviously an exaggeration (or the effect of fried brain cells.



- well maybe - I didn't have my weather almanac handy while replying - for the the years 1991-1992 - but lets just say I remember on more than one occasion temperature clocks flashing in the 100's. I do recall - in the dead of summer -many days going triple digits.

but who cares - this has nothing to to with this thread - my point was I do enjoy hiking on hot and humid days.

I assure you my brain cells are fine.

Gris
06-09-2005, 12:57 PM
In defense of Giggy, and respectfully disagreeing with Tom ..., I visit friends in the NH mountains a few times every summer. They think anything above 82F is "oppressive," even when the humidty is relatively low. That makes me laugh! As aforementioned, it's gotta be 92F+ with HIGH humidty before we down here even consider it "hot." :D :D :D

KayakDan
06-09-2005, 01:35 PM
When the snow leaves the trails,so do we. Hey it's kayakin' season then! Time for the Maine Island Trail.
Kayak camping-my "backpack" now floats-real food!cold beer!cool ocean breeze!

Double Bow
06-09-2005, 02:05 PM
I've never cancelled because of heat however, I don't bring my dog if it's hot. The heat really creates a major strain for him and he has a heart condition so I do right by him and leave him at home with the fan on. :)

Seeker
06-09-2005, 02:49 PM
I love hot weather. I wear as little as modestly possible, drink plenty and dunk my head at every available stream. That helps a huge amount to keep me cool. Love it!

Trailhead
06-09-2005, 04:18 PM
My concession to the high heat is making my post-hike ice cream a large instead of a medium. Of course I have to eat it faster because it melts quicker.

Kinda curious what everyone considers a lot of water or is there some formula? On hot days I'll generally drink four liters or so but I've also been told I drink a lot.

CatskillsYeti
06-09-2005, 04:55 PM
I really don't like the heat and generally limit my hiking to October through April, but not having been in the woods since last October, I decided to go up Ashokan High Point on 6/8. It was hot and humid, and there were zillions of flying things, but there was larger wildlife, too - a wild turkey mama with brood and a fawn - so it was worth it. Would I do it again? Yeah. But sufficient water is critical - and you'll need more than you usually take (I carried 2.5 litres and I could have used another half litre or so). I add an electrolyte replacement to my water (Hydralyte, used to be called Gookinaid) and that, too, is critical, to keep your muscles functioning properly, but any source is ok, as long as you're replacing potassium and magnesium along with the salt.

Head
06-09-2005, 05:04 PM
Doesnt matter to me. Hot or cold...Ill hike in any of it:) I learned a valuable lesson though while doing the Santanoni Range on a 95+ degree day (and HUMMMID)...Drink lots of water (and Gatorade)! Got VERY dehydrated and suffered for a while (few days) afterward. I bring 5 liters minimum on 10 mile day trips...

Warren
06-09-2005, 07:46 PM
I tend to slow down on the amount of times I head out after Memorial day, picking up again at the end of July, though the week after labor day is when I really start up again. I bought a kayak last year as something to do aside from biking when stuck in the city in the summer so now after Labor Day kayaking competes with backpacking until the water goes cold.

It's really the humidity and bugs that gets to me, though I like the way lighter pack.

Raymond
06-10-2005, 02:22 AM
Is it really a good idea to drink a lot of water when it's miserably hot? Isn't that how that woman died during the Boston marathon a couple years ago?

We skipped out of the Adirondacks back in August 2001 because it was so hot. One hike, then we went to Maine, but it wasn't any cooler there.

jade
06-10-2005, 06:00 AM
As far as staying safely hydrated........I will be doing 17+ miles on the M-M Trail in NH tomorrow and will bring along my 100 oz bladder of water and two Nalgene bottles with 'Emergen C'. Sadly, the woman in the Boston Marathon flushed her body of necessary potassium and sodium by drinking water only. Ironically, she was doing a report of very strenuous exercise and its affects on the body as a school project.

There was a thread a while back about additives for good and proper hydration that I found very informative....Gatorade is one but I like to go with a more natural approach and not pay for the 'name'......Emergen C comes in little packets and supplies the drinker with potassium, sodium and a fizzy TASTE!

Whatever you do this weekend, stay hydrated and make sure you nibble if you feel it's too hot to eat a meal........oh yea, and have fun!
...Jade