This morning I slept in the warm stale air at 3000 feet in a t-shirt and shorts. I ascended up Carter mountain to find the previously 36 degree air turn bitter cold. First the gloves went on, then the hat. I felt the gusts rise to over 30 m.p.h. I rested in the warmth of a shelter before setting out in long underwear and a wind shell to the summit.
The first glimpse I had of ice on the trees I knew that I had reached the beginning of the conditions I would have to face for the next four months. As I ascended, the ice became thicker, the trees got shorter, more torn and wind beaten. On the summit there were no trees to protect me from the harsh wind but back in tree line the melting ice pelted my face.
This is the beginning of a winter thru-hike. These are the conditions I will have to adjust to.