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Phelps and Tabletop 1-6-18

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  • Phelps and Tabletop 1-6-18

    Yes it was very cold today. Climbed these two with Claudia.

    Stopped on the way to HPIC at the Stewarts in Keene...the thermometer at the door read -12F. I don't think it increased all day since we stopped at the Mountaineer on the way home and they told us the same number for temperature. There used to be a dial thermometer at the HPIC...not now.

    There weren't many out today. Understatement. We saw two hikers at Marcy dam as we returned and two more at HPIC parking area. That was 2 to 3 pm. On the drive home we saw two cars near the Cascade trailhead. No cars in the lots at St Huberts both sides of 73, nor at Giant, Dix, Dix-Boquet.

    For the hike we both bundled up good with our better than average gear. I wore ski goggles which were very helpful. At the register only one group (of 14) signed in for the GRT before us and signed in after us the two at Marcy dam. They were also heading for Phelps. Trail conditions were good.

    We went slow all day not wanting to work up a sweat.

    A fresh coat of snow on the way to both Phelps at TT. No more than an inch. Drifting near the summits. To our surprise the wind was not too bad. Calm on Phelps and a light breeze on TT. Still we wouldn't want to be on any exposed summit. Hands got very cold in minutes without gloves. Visibility was hazy but OK.

    When we finished TT Claudia put on her best gear especially good gloves. I stayed with what I had and my hands got chilled on the return but not extremely cold - I have better gloves in the pack in case I need them.

    All told a nice day out, we stayed comfortable even with it being very cold.


  • #2
    Sounds like fun, Don. Heat management is brutal in the cold. What pace did you keep to keep from sweating? Did you have to shed layers or stick with what you started with (which was what?)?


    • #3
      Originally posted by 2505 View Post
      Sounds like fun, Don. Heat management is brutal in the cold. What pace did you keep to keep from sweating? Did you have to shed layers or stick with what you started with (which was what?)?
      Took us 2-1/2 hours to Phelps and 2 hours more to get from there to TT. Slower than we can go given good trail condition.

      I had on a poly t shirt, an expedition long sleeve shirt (has pocket for camera stowed in zip lok), a fleece, and a rain coat with pit zips open. Fleece ski hat and an outer Peruvian style hat, rain coat hood. Goggles. EMS $100 mittens. I had liners but when I overheated I put them in my raincoat which was a mistake because the liners iced up and were no help later .... I forgot to bring a zip lok bag for stowing the liners.

      Temperature control was mainly. Taking off the Peruvian, Hood of rain coat on or off, opening both the fleece and rain jacket zippers climbing. Going slower that we can go and \very small steps climbing.



      • #4
        Nice job! About 30 years ago I was heading up Wright and Algonquin on a -13 day with quite a bit of wind too. Got to Wright Peak, hid behind a boulder to eat a sandwich and after maybe a minute it was frozen. I figured I'd be next so I gave up on the idea of summiting Algonquin and headed back. You can definitely have a peak to yourself on these days.
        And because of all their tears
        Their eyes can't hope to see
        The beauty that surrounds them
        Isn't it a pity
        -George Harrison


        • #5
          I just wear a wool baselayer so I can sweat and not worry about it - used to wear synthetic but now only icebreaker - hike often in minus temps and just sweat into the baselayer, layer OVER it if needed and usually dry by the time I'm back but if not, just add layers as the wool stays warm when wet -a lifesaver for my winter 115, especially in NH where we literally hiked on every cold day that winter....
          46R (#7146) ADK, 46W
          48 (NH 4000) + winter
          NE 115 (#706)
          NE Winter 115 (#82)