Mt. Lafayette Winter Summit

I’ve done a lot of things this year I intended to write more about or share more photos from, and honestly have just lost track of time. Over the next month or so until the year ends, I’m going to (try) to be better about sharing more here and will be reflecting a bit on adventures and trips from the beginning of 2018. 

On January 14th, Alli and I went up to New Hampshire to hike the Franconia Ridge. We ended up just doing Lafayette because of how cold it was, but the conditions were absolutely perfect as far as winter hiking in my opinion. It was during a deep cold spell that set in at the beginning of January and the temperature in the parking lot was -20 when we started hiking. This was possibly the most brutal cold I have ever been exposed to while hiking, but we were well prepared and ready for it (you will die if you’re not, so if you’re considering this hike during the winter, please continue reading to see what was brought along). 

- Vasque Coldspark 200g insulated boots (Possibly the most important thing is waterproof and insulated boots, my feet sweat easily, hence not the highest insulation but these boots work perfectly for me)
- Base layer, two mid layers, an extra heavy mid layer, outer layer (what works for me might not for you, but this is typically the approach I take since hiking even in -20 to -40 will inevitably cause you to sweat and the last thing you want to be is wet from sweat on a frozen mountain)
- Insulated beanie
- Thing gloves and heavy mittens to wear over the gloves when I wasn’t shooting
- Snowshoes (we use the MSR Revo Ascents, as long as they’re aggressive enough for inclines you will be good with whatever brand you want)
- Trekking poles
- Microspikes
- Something to keep your water insulated (learned the hard way on my first winter hike)
- More food and water than you think you’ll need. The wind is always brutal and really makes you work up a hunger, be prepared and you’ll enjoy hiking in what some people would consider insane conditions a whole lot more.
- Your standard first aid and common sense hiking supplies keeping in mind that the likelihood of seeing many people on the trail is a lot lower than in warm months