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  1. #1
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    Default Sleep system for April start at Springer

    Hello, Atíers-my first post!
    Looking for advice on sleeping bag for April start at Springer:



    Iím planning to start the AT somewhere ~April 10->15 at Springer.


    Iím undecided about my sleep system. Iím considering using a new Enlightened Equipment 10F quilt that I never used before OR a Montbell 30F down hugger that has worked fine for me in the mid summer on the AT in Maine.
    For pad iím planning on using a womens NeoAir xlite R3.9.


    Iíd like to use just one sleeping bag for the whole trail- but am concerned that the quilt will be too warm later when the weather warms or that the 30F Montbell bag wont be warm enough in April.


    Iíve never hiked any part of the AT south of New England so I donít know what to expect temperature wise in April and early May. I tend to sleep cold- for me a 20F bag feels more like it should be called a 35F bag. Weight wise the Montbell 30F bag is 1oz. lighter than the EE 10F quilt- so theyíre practically the same.

    Advice and thoughts are welcome- Thank You.

  2. #2
    Registered User AlyontheAT2016's Avatar
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    08-25-2015
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    I would start with the 10F quilt, especially since you sleep cold. The Smokies could surprise you. I was at Double Spring Gap shelter (right before Clingman's Dome) around May 15 last year and the temps dropped to below 25 overnight with little warning. The day before was an average 70s/30s. Then trade the quilt out for the 30 degree bag when you get to Virginia.
    AT '16: 1,378 miles GA-NY

    trail journal
    // blog

  3. #3

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    April is a tricky month in the Southeast. Yet a couple years ago we had the hottest March on record with no temps below 60F. I even needed my headnet for the bugs but did not bring it.

    Then again, several years ago I was close to Choah Bald at 5,000 feet and got snow on April 30th---cold enough to cause several thruhikers to bail off the trail.

    I consider April to be my last winter month and will bring my down pants and winter sleeping bag and 4R Thermarest inflatable---and gloves and fleece hat and winter clothing. But I won't bring my winter boots or snow shovel or microspikes.

    And like Alyon says, the Smokies will surprise you. Better warm with more weight than cold with less weight.

  4. #4

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    Despite this little late season cold snap, I expect it will be down right toasty in GA when I get to Springer on April 20th this year so I'm bringing my old, beat up 30 degree bag, which is more like a 40 degree bag now. With a liner, top and bottom base layers and inside my tent, I figure I can weather a few cold nights if I have to.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  5. #5
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    Thanks for replies all,
    Still not sure how i'll go. I'd like to use the 30F sleeping bag- just cuz its tried & true. I have a 7oz. bivy sack that I've used in the past to add some warmth to the bag.

  6. #6
    Registered User JPritch's Avatar
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    02-03-2017
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    Can adding a space blanket either to the bottom inside or bottom outside of your bag increase warmth? I have one I never used, just wondering whether to bring it or not. Heading out of Springer 4/1.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by JPritch View Post
    Can adding a space blanket either to the bottom inside or bottom outside of your bag increase warmth? I have one I never used, just wondering whether to bring it or not. Heading out of Springer 4/1.
    No, it wouldn't help much and with all the noise it makes, you'd not get much sleep. If you put it over you, you'd get drenched in sweat.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  8. #8
    Registered User DownEaster's Avatar
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    03-15-2017
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    Silicon Valley
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    You might consider starting with a rectangle of Reflectix as a second sleeping pad for the additional R-value. Cheap, light (though bulky) and you can dump it in a hiker box when you don't need it any more.

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