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Thread: Clothing Advice

  1. #1
    Registered User jtjens's Avatar
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    Default Clothing Advice

    Hey all, I'm beginning the planning process for my thru-hike in 2015. I've found some advice from seasoned hikers but I want to get the widest range of advice I can get.

    One aspect I've been wondering about and haven't found a whole lot on, is what is the best lightweight clothing to pack that will keep me comfortable through most or all of the season.

    Any advice and/or opinions from y'all will be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Registered User FarmerChef's Avatar
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    First off. Welcome to Whiteblaze!

    You'll get many opinions here so I'll give you mine...

    lightweight synthetic shorts/convertible pants and top are a must for the summer months and a bit into the fall/spring. Add to this a lightweight merino wool (or similar) layer and you've got a solid set up for late spring, summer and early fall (temps in the 40s to 50s and up). But when evenings get chilly, you'll want to add to this a fleece or down warm layer and, possibly, a midweight thermal layer (merino or similar) to top and bottom. Bottom if you tend to get cold legs. Cold legs are much more tolerable when you're torso is warm than vice versa.

    Add a beanie and some gloves for the cold nights and you're good to go in the early spring and later fall. Don't forget a windbreaker layer such as a poncho or a vest with a dwr layer or similar for the windy/cold days. Some also bring a long sleeve shirt for nights in the summer to stay warm in by the fire and to keep the skeeters off.
    2,000 miler. Still keepin' on keepin' on.

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    jtjens

    Welcome to WB. There is an outfitter right on the AT just a few days hike north of Springer Mtn. As such, they are experts on how to equip yourself for a thru hike. This article from Backpacker Magazine outlines their packing list. Of course there are as many variations as there are hikers and you will likely get a lot of different answers to the same question, but this would be a good place to start.

    http://www.backpacker.com/november_0...s/12659?page=4

    Also, I recommend Andrew Skurka's book on selecting gear. It is not specifically for the AT, but rather works through the thought process for making good choices. Thus, he isn't so much telling you what to do (you get plenty of that here on WB ) but rather he shows you had to work it out for yourself.

    http://andrewskurka.com/product/ulti...rs-gear-guide/

    Happy Trails

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    as important as being lightweight, most people take too much clothing.

  5. #5

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    My system works for me from 10 to 90 degrees which in one Spring week is normal in the Southern Appalachian.

    Rain Shell and Rain Pants
    Columbia Fishing Shorts with mesh liner
    Starter brand Tshirt
    Midweight Microfleece jacket
    Long sleeve lightweight base layer top and bottoms
    Down jacket with hood
    Two pairs socks
    Fleece mittens
    Shell mittens
    Thin wool watch cap

    I will add if its going to be colder then normal

    Down pants
    Down socks
    Balaclava
    One pair thicker socks

  6. #6
    Garlic
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    Some good advice I first heard on this forum is that if you can't wear everything at once, you have too much clothing. Everything should work together in layers.

    What you carry is far secondary to how you use it. If you climb a steep hill in the rain in your nice new down vest below your excellent new rain jacket, that vest will soon be worse than useless, for example. Best thing to do is get a lot of experience in adverse conditions and build up your own kit this winter. Sorry for the generalities, but I would never expect anyone to dress the way I do, and there's no way I'd head out on a trail with someone else's pack.
    "Throw a loaf of bread and a pound of tea in an old sack and jump over the back fence." John Muir on expedition planning

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by garlic08 View Post
    Some good advice I first heard on this forum is that if you can't wear everything at once, you have too much clothing. Everything should work together in layers.

    What you carry is far secondary to how you use it. If you climb a steep hill in the rain in your nice new down vest below your excellent new rain jacket, that vest will soon be worse than useless, for example. Best thing to do is get a lot of experience in adverse conditions and build up your own kit this winter. Sorry for the generalities, but I would never expect anyone to dress the way I do, and there's no way I'd head out on a trail with someone else's pack.
    100% agree. Hikerboy57 and I were wearing different cloths in the same conditions. Its 35 degrees and I'm wearing shorts and a light top and he's comfortable at 80 degrees wearing pants and a long sleeve shirt.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by garlic08 View Post
    Some good advice I first heard on this forum is that if you can't wear everything at once, you have too much clothing. Everything should work together in layers.

    What you carry is far secondary to how you use it. If you climb a steep hill in the rain in your nice new down vest below your excellent new rain jacket, that vest will soon be worse than useless, for example. Best thing to do is get a lot of experience in adverse conditions and build up your own kit this winter. Sorry for the generalities, but I would never expect anyone to dress the way I do, and there's no way I'd head out on a trail with someone else's pack.
    That's it in a nut shell, talkin part of this thread is done

    to the OP.....do read up on different matierals though..polyesters, nylons, blends, different weaves...everybody these days claims there garments are wicking, dri clim, yada yada yada and for the most part they are, but go see for yourself which ones work for you.

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