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  1. #1

    Default SOBO in early June?

    Hello all!

    I am considering a SOBO thru hike starting June 1. I am from Tennessee and hike often down here. I'm in fair shape (just ran a 13.5 miles yesterday to see how far I could run) and feel confident that I could conquer a SOBO hike were I to take my time in adjusting to hiking every day.

    My question is this: do you think starting a SOBO hike on June 1 is too early? I'm graduating from college in early May, and while I could do a NOBO hike (would have to rush and average really high mileage, which I'd like to enjoy my thru-hike) I feel a SOBO would be more fitting.

    My main concerns are how bad the blackflies would be and if the bodies of water would be impassable from the snow melting. Also

    Please let me know what you think! Also, if you plan on starting a SOBO around June 1, let me know! I'd be glad to be acquainted with you!

  2. #2
    Registered User Turtle-2013's Avatar
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    I finished a section of the 100MW just a few days later than that in June last year ... and except for being wet (rain), it was fine, and all the crossings were passable. But, I can't speak to what you will get south of Monson into NH and VT. However, there were SOBOs on the trail with me....

  3. #3

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    Ya just never know. It could be fine and delightful or it could a month of misery. Most likely a little of both. If the weather or bugs look bad for the first couple weeks of June, just delay a bit.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  4. #4

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    Thanks all! I've ran the numbers and I think my only option is a NOBO thru hike. I only have until November 5 (my first day at my job, lucky in the first place that they're OK with me starting so late!) so either way I'm looking at ~152 days for a thru hike. I believe I can do it, I'm really disciplined, am already quite fit, and plan on splurging on more expensive ultralight gear (justified in the fact that I may not be able to otherwise do a thru-hike with my time constraints). I also plan on doing few zeros and doing more neros in order to gain a bit of time back I'd otherwise spend in towns (probably will save some money not being in town at hostels/hotels too).

  5. #5
    Registered User egilbe's Avatar
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    June can be pretty wet. Last year, down in Southern Maine, we had pretty decent weather. From listening to the Sobos we talked to on July 1st at Carry Pond, they saw the sun on the day they summited Katahdin and didn't see the sun again until July 1st, two weeks later. We talked them into stopping early that day because torrential rains were forecasted. And it poured. Four tornadoes we're reported in Maine and there was something like 7 inches of rain in 8 hours. The next morning, the trail leading to Pierce Pond was knee deep. There were a couple little streams we crossed that were roaring. If that happens in the HMW, just wait it out. The rivers and streams drop pretty quickly.

    June 1st is not too early, but the trail up Hunt may not be open.

  6. #6
    Registered User egilbe's Avatar
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    Plan on finishing by October 15th, just to be safe.

  7. #7
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    What about a flip flop?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by gracebowen View Post
    What about a flip flop?
    Too hard headed to do a flip flop. I really want to do a traditional hike straight through...

  9. #9
    Registered User egilbe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lukejmills View Post
    Too hard headed to do a flip flop. I really want to do a traditional hike straight through...
    Learn to be like water. Fluid, flexible, go where the trail takes you. Being to hard headed to be flexible means you may be in a world of hurt on the AT. Remember, 80% of the people who started with the intention of a through-hiker fail to complete it.

  10. #10

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    June 1st is fine. Trails up have opened before then every year for over a decade.
    Read this: The 2018 SoBo’s Guide to Baxter and Katahdin
    Hurd Brook, your first ford in the 100, is usually just a rock-hop the first week of June.
    Teej

    "[ATers] represent three percent of our use and about twenty percent of our effort," retired Baxter Park Director Jensen Bissell.

  11. #11

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    June 1st is fine. Trails up have opened before then every year for over a decade.
    Read this: The 2018 SoBo’s Guide to Baxter and Katahdin
    Hurd Brook, your first ford in the 100, is usually just a rock-hop the first week of June.
    Teej

    "[ATers] represent three percent of our use and about twenty percent of our effort," retired Baxter Park Director Jensen Bissell.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by egilbe View Post
    Learn to be like water. Fluid, flexible, go where the trail takes you. Being to hard headed to be flexible means you may be in a world of hurt on the AT. Remember, 80% of the people who started with the intention of a through-hiker fail to complete it.
    I do realize this. I just draw the line at flip flopping haha

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