JMT in October

2:39 p.m. on August 28, 2004 (EDT)
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I am currently planning a thru-hike of the John Muir Trail October 1st would be my start date. Has anyone hiked at this time, is it too late in the season to start? What precautions should I recognize?

5:50 p.m. on August 29, 2004 (EDT)
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This is probably ok, except ...

If you start Oct 1, you will have shorter days, hence less hike time. Still, there is enough daylight that the typical 3 weeks should be adequate.

The end of October is starting to get toward the early end of the snow season. It is usually dry (or at least little rainfall or snowfall) until into November. We did have a flurry of snow with the typical summer afternoon thunderstorms a couple weeks ago, and it is possible to have snow in late October. But it is not likely to stick. It will be cooler at night than typical for the usual hiking season - subfreezing probably during most of your time once you leave the first 4 or 5 miles of trailhead behind. I would suggest going north (Yosemite Valley) to south (Whitney), as safer for the weather.

One problem is that the two southern dropoff points for your resupply may be closed by the time you get there. You better check to be sure. You might have to carry a lot more food than if you can resupply. Tuolumne and Red's Meadows should still be available, especially if you start at the north end.

8:59 p.m. on August 30, 2004 (EDT)
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Welcome to Trailspace, Bmidzy. There was a good discussion of this topic just last month. See this thread: http://www.trailspace.com/backcountry/messages/20632.html

November 26, 2014
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