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  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by AfterParty View Post
    Seems like shelters and hostels could be breeding grounds for sickness. I would prefer to avoid both, I don't mind hanging out but when I'm going to sleep I wanna be alone in my tent.
    After watching many thru hikes on YouTube of the AT, PCT, and CDT, I am discovering that the PCT and CDT appeal to me more because of the vast remoteness of those areas and the lack of shelters and privies. Tenting opportunities appear to be plentiful. But your daily miles must be high simply to get to water and resupply points. I have little experience thus far, but the appeal of the AT seems to be more road crossings and town services. Shelters and privies indeed look like good places to exchange germs.

  2. #22
    Registered User egilbe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeGoldRush View Post
    After watching many thru hikes on YouTube of the AT, PCT, and CDT, I am discovering that the PCT and CDT appeal to me more because of the vast remoteness of those areas and the lack of shelters and privies. Tenting opportunities appear to be plentiful. But your daily miles must be high simply to get to water and resupply points. I have little experience thus far, but the appeal of the AT seems to be more road crossings and town services. Shelters and privies indeed look like good places to exchange germs.
    No worse than any other public area one may visit in the course of a day.

    During the civil war, soldiers who were raised in the country were more likely to get sick and die than those who grew up in cities. Something about being exposed to masses of humanity and their germs boosted the city-slickers immune system. Most often, country boys exposed to those microbes for the first time, died.

    Dont be afraid of germs. That which doesnt kill you makes you stronger.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1azarus View Post
    and the related question is... set up a hammock in a shelter? It is very tempting to do so when there's rain or snow, or if it is just windy out. and if the shelter is empty, no harm done. pretty much same guidelines apply -- if you do set up in a shelter and hikers arrive, don't even ask -- if anyone shows up, just take your hammock down and move out of the shelter. immediately! In some ways, hammocks are even worse than tents, since the easiest way to hang a hammock is all the way from one side to the other.
    Also be careful about the sturdiness of the shelter. A hammock puts a lot of strain on supports. Not a problem with trees, but can be with shelters.
    Time is but the stream I go afishin' in.
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  4. #24
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    "After watching many thru hikes on YouTube of the AT, PCT, and CDT, I am discovering that the PCT and CDT appeal to me more because of the vast remoteness of those areas and the lack of shelters and privies. Tenting opportunities appear to be plentiful."

    Yup. Didn't come to the conclusion based on any You Tube vids though. PCTers and CDTers tend to be more advanced/experienced thru-hikers some having added to their skill set to NOT have to habitually camp at water sources and certainly not habitually rely on or plan their hikes based on shelters. Good article by Drew Smith titled In Praise of Dry Camping that more ATers should read and add to their uh hem skill sets/hikes. http://www.trailgroove.com/issue29.html?autoflip=107

    On a side note, even though the user numbers(thus or total users) don't equate on the PCT and certainly not the CDT compared to the AT you don't generally see this supposed certain widespread rampant habitat destruction from more dispersed camping on the PCT and CDT compared to what can be observed at AT lean-to locations that concentrate damage. Again, usage and more environmentally conscious, self sufficient, independent, experienced hikes on the PCT and CDT?

    "But your daily miles must be high simply to get to water and resupply points."

    Not necessarily.

    I have little experience thus far, but the appeal of the AT seems to be more road crossings and town services."

    Conveniences, comforts, and well known trail and overly analyzed logistics is what the AT is about. PCT and JMT are/have becoming/become this way. Plus, although I think this stat goes back to convenience, comfort, and lack of adventurous spirit by sticking to what's more known, more than 1/2 the U.S. elves with a day's drive of the AT.

    "Shelters and privies indeed look like good places to exchange germs."


    Quote Originally Posted by egilbe View Post
    No worse than any other public area one may visit in the course of a day.

    During the civil war, soldiers who were raised in the country were more likely to get sick and die than those who grew up in cities. Something about being exposed to masses of humanity and their germs boosted the city-slickers immune system. Most often, country boys exposed to those microbes for the first time, died.

    Dont be afraid of germs. That which doesnt kill you makes you stronger.
    Say what you will about being stronger but where humans congregate like at AT lean-tos they bring with them problems such as increased viruses, bacteria, polluted water, congestion, environmental destruction(cutting down and damaging of trees, trampling of sensitive plants), leaving trash behind or left in fire rings, etc. Mice and rats and bears show up at AT lean-tos as a result of human activity. Hantavirus is spread at AT lean-tos hence the warnings from the ATC about avoiding or taking precautions at AT lean-tos. IMHO water sources overall at AT lean-tos are more suspect of tainted water than away from lean to areas walking 300 off trail to get it upstream at a small rivulet/stream's waterfall. It is the human animal's activities on the AT I'm more concerned with than poisonous plants or hazards from wildlife.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1azarus View Post
    and the related question is... set up a hammock in a shelter? It is very tempting to do so when there's rain or snow, or if it is just windy out. and if the shelter is empty, no harm done. pretty much same guidelines apply -- if you do set up in a shelter and hikers arrive, don't even ask -- if anyone shows up, just take your hammock down and move out of the shelter. immediately! In some ways, hammocks are even worse than tents, since the easiest way to hang a hammock is all the way from one side to the other.
    Setting up a hammock in a shelter? Better check the rules on that one.
    Don't know about the vast majority of the AT, but in the Smokies, the rules explicitly prohibit attaching a hammock to any shelter or other build in GSMNP.

  6. #26
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    Most AT lean-tos occupancy number, sometimes listed on the lean-to which I would like to see clearly displayed AT EVERY AT lean-to, seems to be based on allotting a 24-28" wide sleeping area which is less of a footprint than even the smallest 1 p UL tent. Even if the tent is allowed inside the AT lean to that may require a person not in the tent to be sleeping in a constricted coffin sized space while inside the tent the tenter is grabbing at a greater footprint.

    First come first served does not mean a first come do what you want ignorance/unconscious of others mindset is called for either.

  7. #27

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    There was a tent inside Blood Mountain shelter end of May. I walked into the shelter and it startled me. Someone was snoring loud. Big car camping tent. Could have fit 5 people in it.

  8. #28
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    Don't like the mice at AT lean-tos don't stay there AND DON'T MAKE THE MICE AN EXCUSE TO ERECT A TENT IN A LEAN-TO. Little valid reasons why a tent has to be erected in a lean-to. One of the BIG reasons for carrying a tent is so that an ATer DOES NOT HAVE TO RELY ON AT lean-to areas!

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Don't like the mice at AT lean-tos don't stay there AND DON'T MAKE THE MICE AN EXCUSE TO ERECT A TENT IN A LEAN-TO. Little valid reasons why a tent has to be erected in a lean-to. One of the BIG reasons for carrying a tent is so that an ATer DOES NOT HAVE TO RELY ON AT lean-to areas!
    I just don't understand the theory that a tent will keep a mouse out. Setting up a tent in a shelter in three season conditions seems like a great way to end up with a tent that has holes in it.

    Similarly, excluding others from a shelter by setting up a tent inside of it in three season conditions sounds like a great way to cause an angry hiker to smear peanut butter on the side of your tent to encourage the aforementioned mice.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  10. #30
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    Smearing peanut butter on the side of another's tent to encourage the aforementioned mice hints at sarcasm.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Smearing peanut butter on the side of another's tent to encourage the aforementioned mice hints at sarcasm.
    I'm not saying that I'd condone it, but if I found out about it after the fact I'd probably have a good laugh.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  12. #32
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    For me, pitching a tent in a shelter, when other people are sharing the shelter, is a last resort, and for the below reasons only:

    1) It's raining and/or rain is forecast, and
    2) You absolutely can't tolerate mice, and
    3) You're not hogging space when there are others.

    I'm amazed at the number of hikers - thru/section/day - who seem to rely on shelters. I grew up learning to tent camp on the ground. Shelters are nice if you're really lonely and desire company, or if rain is imminent, or if you absolutely can't find a smooth tent location. But, otherwise, I say just pitch a tent off the trail. One of the appeals of backpacking is getting as close to DIY as possible.

  13. #33
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    I like shelters. Tip Walter has one that will fit 6 of us. Party at Tipi's house. He's offering all the dehydrated Vegan food you can eat in exchange for 1 hr of trail maintenance. He supplies the hand pruners too.

  14. #34
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    Tipi's house doesn't have any mice problems either.

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    "Say what you will about being stronger but where humans congregate like at AT lean-tos they bring with them problems such as increased viruses, bacteria, polluted water, congestion, environmental destruction(cutting down and damaging of trees, trampling of sensitive plants), leaving trash behind or left in fire rings, etc. Mice and rats and bears show up at AT lean-tos as a result of human activity. Hantavirus is spread at AT lean-tos hence the warnings from the ATC about avoiding or taking precautions at AT lean-tos. IMHO water sources overall at AT lean-tos are more suspect of tainted water than away from lean to areas walking 300 off trail to get it upstream at a small rivulet/stream's waterfall. It is the human animal's activities on the AT I'm more concerned with than poisonous plants or hazards from wildlife.
    Post on Guthooks FB page today, which is the reason I treat all water on popular tracks as suspect unless it is coming straight out of the ground where I'm standing. https://www.facebook.com/guthookhike...WSFEED&fref=nf
    "He was a wise man who invented beer." Plato

  16. #36
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    Default How?

    Funny. Did he have a cat?

  17. #37

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    Last month Gumball and I stayed at Hemlocks Lean To in CT on an iffy weather night. The shelter was empty so we set up our tent on the floor between the bunks. We didn't take up any bed space at all, and the one hiker who came that night was thrilled to get the entire loft to himself (though all 4 bunks were still accessible and available). Had it been necessary, we'd have moved the tent or maybe claimed one of the bunks and ditched to tent to avoid the upcoming potential storm, but it never became an issue. It was nice not having to worry about the weather, mice or bugs for the night.
    ...the maddest of all is to see life as it is, and not as it should be. Cervantes

  18. #38
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    Got a shelter or a hut to yourself for the night, put up a tent, have a party get naked whatever lights your wick. When others turn up just be nice and realise that you don't own it and being there first conveys no special rights. Just good manners I suppose.
    "He was a wise man who invented beer." Plato

  19. #39
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    Wonder why the shelters look so good if rain is in the forecast? Does your tent or hammock not have a rain fly? I don't get wet in my tent. I've heard hammoclers swear they never get wet in their hammocks. So unless the rain is already pelting down when you arrive and you don't want to set up in the rain, why does "Iffy weather" or rain coming in make it a better option to sleep with rats and strangers?
    " Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt. "

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnj View Post
    Wonder why the shelters look so good if rain is in the forecast? Does your tent or hammock not have a rain fly? I don't get wet in my tent. I've heard hammoclers swear they never get wet in their hammocks. So unless the rain is already pelting down when you arrive and you don't want to set up in the rain, why does "Iffy weather" or rain coming in make it a better option to sleep with rats and strangers?
    It's because the next morning you don't have to jam a wet shelter back into your pack.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

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