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Old 12-21-2020, 11:48 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 128
Climbing in slush

I've hiked a bit in winter but never climbed. A few weeks ago I tried for the first time and it didn't go so well. I was down in the Catskills visiting and it had snowed a few days earlier but the temperature that day was in the low 40s. The flat part was okay but I started climbing but the footing was poor and I was nervous about coming down so I abandoned after a little bit of climbing. I didn't wear snowshoes because it didn't seem like there was enough snow (maybe that was a mistake?). I wore spikes but quickly realized that didn't help. Any insight.
Successful ascents: 118 (72 different) as of 5/24/21
Adirondack/Catskill fire tower challenge: 12/30
Adk 29er challenge: 11/29
Completed: Chester Challenge, Tupper Lake Triad
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Old 12-21-2020, 11:56 AM   #2
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Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 5,225
Shoulder season conditions (late fall/early spring) just kind of suck in general. Once winter arrives in earnest, things generally aren't as likely to be wet/slushy due to more consistently colder temperatures.

Although be aware as well that ice can be a concern with footing once winter takes off and slush becomes less prevalent. Spikes are good and along with a decent set of mountaineering snowshoes will suffice for most conditions. However, if you're planning to hike regularly in mountainous terrain through the winter, you'll encounter conditions that demand crampons at some point. (And I've found that crampons are needed more often in the Catskills than in the ADK High Peaks, even.)

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