How to Walk Across New Hampshire in January
- We will be walking for about two weeks, from January 11 through 24th. We are not camping, and we will have a support bus following the walk. We will be on or close to roads.
- On this page, it would be really fantastic if we could collect best practices for clothing and stuff we should bring.
- Editing this wiki is SUPER simple (at least for someone considering a walk in NH in the winter). Signup for an account above, and then click edit. Don't worry about formatting if that's not your thing (others will clean up formatting problems). You can get editing help at the link below.
If you have trouble creating an account, please email me at lessig at pobox dot com.
How to Walk When You Can't Walk Any More
To keep walking, first stop walking.
- Weird advice, right? But it's true.
- The point of a walk like this is for the group, and everyone in it, to finish safely and successfully. If no single individual walks every step, that may matter to that person. It may matter a lot. If you must do that, I would not discourage you and I wish you the best. But what matters most is the goal of the walk.
- The last time I did one of these walks, we went from eastern Kansas across Missouri to St. Louis. There were a few short stretches where it was just not safe to walk. We rode past those. When we fell behind, some of us took turns running stretches from one to five miles. One group took it upon themselves to walk through the warm nights. Even then, we didn't get quite every mile walked.
- It was still a successful walk.
- It sounds like yesterday may have been the worst day you'll face. I wouldn't have put this up before you'd made that walk. Now you know you can do something really hard. Let that achievement remind you this will be a successful walk even if it isn't perfect. Keep yourselves well and, when you or those who are monitoring your health decide you must rest, do it.
- And then walk again.
What to Wear: The Mike Monetta Short Form
- Mike's checklist of things you MUST have:
- Extra Heavy Winter Socks
- Extra Gloves
- Wind Proof Hat
- Face Mask
- Insulated Thermal Wear
- Winter Boots
- Snow Pants
- Winter Jacket
- Neck Guard/Warmer
- Layers are the key for how you dress, avoid cotton when possible, it won't keep you warm when damp or wet
What else to bring
- small backpack
- water bottle (1 liter)
- chapstick (lip balm)
- duffle bag
- cell phone charger
- sleeping bag?
What to Wear: bits suggested by others
- Boot recommendations
- I say: Yaktrax is great for traction, but be sure to get either the Pro or the ones with the strap. I lost a pair on my first day.
- Clothing recommendations
- Greg (aka traacker)says:
- I want to be sure that I add to the other voices regarding the very serious safety issues this presents. New Hampshire, January, Outside, On or Next to Roads, dangerous on the nicest of summer days; Lunacy in winter time, not adequately prepared, unsupported, or without someone watching your back: ready, willing and completely able to come and get you.
- Gaiter ideas: http://www.rei.com/category/40004991
- I shall be bringing an old pair of gaiters with me. They are very light weight, waterproof, breathable and shall cover the lace area of my foot wear as well as help protect my lower pant legs from the elements. I am not suggesting brand or style but strongly encourage if there is a choice, choose a pair which covers as much of the lace area as possible.
- As I pause and envision New Hampshire in January, from North to South. I am surprised to see the idea of walking or running shoes mentioned as appropriate foot wear.
- In my past I have experienced winter camping in the Presidential Range along this route, just higher up, it is very serious stuff, but safe and fun if the worst case has been planned for. Thus, I shall be bringing gaiters no matter what the footwear I choose to bring along. I would love to wear running shoes or walkers, BUT... would be placing my safety on the assumption that I would, at any point in time, be able to step into a dry, warm, and safe refuge at any moment, period. I think that is what is being said will be available to me.
- Think is the operative word here. It is not Perfectly Clear to me, yet.
- Prepare for the worst, look forward to the best, me thinks, and I is looking forward to having some fun and laughter along this little walk in this beautiful land of New Hampshire with you. Arrhhh...
- Greg (aka traacker)says:
- davidlocke says:
- Wear polypropylene next to your body, as others suggested, socks, gloves, long johns. More layers, rather than less.
- davidlocke says:
- midlakewinter says:
- A few quick thoughts:
- FEET - must be protected. Wear poly liners under your hiking socks. The key is to transfer the friction to between the socks, not between your foot and the sock.
- TRACTION - NH in Jan is rough. Invest in a pair of stabilicers, microspikes, yaktrax, etc.
- THREE LAYER SYSTEM - is the best way to stay warm. Base keeps you dry, insulating keeps dead air space nice and warm, shell protects from wind,water, etc. Double gloves are also handy (thin glove layer to protect from wind and a water-resistant mitten as a shell)
- COTTON KILLS - this is no joke. As a base layer it stays wet and you'll chafe. No cotton.
- TREKKING POLES - I always hike with sticks. Any impact/ weight you can transfer from your legs to your upper body is a good thing.
- DRINK A TON - stay hydrated to stay warm. Thick blood leaves the extremities under circulated.
- PROTECT YOUR EYES - sun + reflective snow is bad news. Two weeks primarily outdoors can do some damage. Take care of your eyes.
- tysonanderson says:
- I will typically wear a capilene or wool baselayer (wicks sweat away from your skin) > fleece > down > shell when out in the backcounty and will remove one or more layers to match the conditions I'm in. If you are wearing say a warm parka over a t-shirt you have a lot fewer options when it comes to regulating temperature. Also a cotton t-shirt will actually make you colder when wet because it won't insulate and it will hold moisture up against your skin.
- tysonanderson says:
My main concern is not so much the cold but being hit by cars--if you have a reflective vest you might consider bringing it.
- What should we eat?
- How do bathroom breaks work? Will we be stopping regularly throughout the day?
- Yes, we will be stopping, and there will be an RV following us.
- For folks only walking for particular days, when and where should they be meeting each morning? What are the earliest and latest that we expect to be done with walking for a day?
- Will cameras be following us? Should we be marching with signs?
Unanswered Questions (sign your name automatically with ~~~~)
- How many people are we expecting each day? It looks from the participant pages like roughy 55 people have created those pages, but I imagine some people won't be walking every day. Are other people showing up who didn't elect to create pledge pages?