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Old 01-03-2017, 04:46 PM   #1
tenderfoot
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Location: Rochester NY
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ADK Loj & AMR Lake Rd Jan 1-2

Was hoping for our first winter peak - Sawteeth off of the AMR's Lake Rd. Got into Loj later than expected, had a great star lit night in a lean to. Took our hammocks < 15F for the first time and all went well.

Got up early but reached trail head later than expected. Everything takes longer with winter camping :<). Took Lake road into Weld trail. Looked at mountain, looked at watch and turned around.

Was not feeling 100%, foul weather due that evening and we (I) was moving much slower than needed to get back at a reasonable time to start the 6 hour drive to Rochester.

We chalked it up to our 1st snow shoe hike, learned a few things and really enjoyed the fine weather & scenery. We ventured as far as we felt comfortable with our gear, energy and skills.

What went well
  • Amazed at how warm our not-so-expensive primaloft jackets kept us
  • MSR rented composite snow shoes are much nicer to work with than my tubular Atlas ones for these conditions.
  • Hammocks / underquilt very comfy
  • Hot water bottles are awesome!
  • Mittens in hammock to hold phone, battery, alky fuel helped a lot.

What could be better
  • Hiked in winter boots, not winter hiking boots but winter boots. Feet were warm but maybe not as happy.
  • Need a simplified hammock suspension for these colder trips
  • Camping & climbing on a two day trip is a bit tight schedule wise.
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Old 01-03-2017, 04:57 PM   #2
Trail Boss
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You may want to consider staying at either of the two hostels in the area (Tmax 'n Topo's or Keene Valley Hostel). I've done that in the past and it's an inexpensive (and comfortable) way to get an early start so you can take full advantage of those short winter days. I'm not knocking winter-camping but, like you said, everything takes longer to do in cold temps.
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