Adirondacks 2008

I brought along a book about the Adirondacks. It explained geology and wildlife and a bit of history. While you are there reading a la Anne Fadiman’s suggestion.

my first real hiking experience. bought a zero-degree sleeping bag. Really needed it. I underestimated the harsh winter conditions. It was March, spring break of sophomore year. In New York City, was warming up and no snow left. But I didn’t know that the elevation and latitude change of upstate New York would cause such a drastic difference in temperature and snowfall. As we drove upstate, the landscape’s overall color slowly changed to white. Ah, I thought to myself, now I know why my friends strongly recommended that zero-degree.

It was sub-zero degree weather everyday. The coldest was at Mount Marcy’s summit, -5 degrees Fahrenheit! We slept in park lean-tos. They were constructed from wooden logs and were essentially a floor, a roof, and three walls. For added warmth, we crammed the three of us into a two-person tent inside the lean-to.

It was so cold overnight that our breaths would condense, collect on the ceiling of the tent, and rain down on our faces during the night. Almost all our Nalgene water bottles froze overnight. Only those that were kept inside my frame pack didn’t freeze. But as soon as I took it out, and shook it, the water would instantly make cracking sounds and start to freeze because it had been super-chilled and was just at the freezing point.

So we hiked with our bottles inside our jackets to thaw them for water along the way. I got thirsty and impatient so just ate icicles off of trees as I hiked. Anthony and Seth warned me about getting diarrhea this way. I was fine.