Humphreys Acclimation

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JasonCleghorn
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Humphreys Acclimation

Post by JasonCleghorn »

I'm taking a TN flatlander(LOL) to 'do Humphrey's' next Saturday, AM. When you've driven up to Snowbowl for your Humphreys summits, have you always just A. slept in your car, B. walked a bit down the Aspen Loop Trail and pitched your tent, etc. C. or pitched your tent elsewhere nearby or in the parking lot.

I want to have a very early start, perhaps even alpine start in the dark or just before first light.
Last edited by joebartels on Jun 25 2018 8:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: modified the title to benefit future inquires
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Tough_Boots
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by Tough_Boots »

I would get a good night's sleep at home and drive up early in the morning. I don't know how much "acclimating" one night at 8,000 ft is going to get you. Taking some ginkgo daily the prior week would probably do more. I definitely wouldn't camp there. The only people pitching tents in that parking lot are local high school kids :whistle:
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ddgrunning
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by ddgrunning »

There are 14 dispersed camping sites along Friedlein Prairie Road, which branches off to the right as you head up Snowbowl road. http://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/coconino ... ecid=75157
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JasonCleghorn
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by JasonCleghorn »

ddgrunning wrote:There are 14 dispersed camping sites along Friedlein Prairie Road, which branches off to the right as you head up Snowbowl road. http://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/coconino ... ecid=75157
Thanks, this may well be the option that I choose.
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joebartels
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by joebartels »

Looks like 1-3 days at altitude is best. Overnight would still probably help a bit.

https://www.princeton.edu/~oa/safety/altitude.html

If I read that correctly a light walk the day before at altitude would be beneficial compared to sitting around.
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sbkelley
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by sbkelley »

"Climb High, Sleep Low" - you guys could go up to Snowbowl the evening before the hike, and walk out a bit on the Kachina Trail? Then head back down and camp at the suggested Friedlein Prairie sites. Probably your best option on a 1-nighter
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cactuscat
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by cactuscat »

I like a good night's sleep in a cheap Flagstaff hotel the night before.
It's out of the way, but I once spent a gorgeous star and bulging elk filled night at Lockett Meadow pre-summit as well. Wasn't a great nights rest, but I still felt energized for the hike.
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The_Dude
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by The_Dude »

I would second the dispersed camping in the Friedland Prairie area, we did that a few years ago and there are some nice spots to be had. Very short drive to the Snowbowl TH in the morning.
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Jim_H
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by Jim_H »

Acclimatize for Humphrey? Really? Okay.

Overall fitness, hydration, and morning food are probably more important for our incredibly enjoyable, very scenic, but still modest 12er. I would stay in Flag, if you want to be nearer to minimize AM drive times, which I get. I do not sleep well camping, so try not to.
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DallinW
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by DallinW »

Jim_H wrote: Overall fitness, hydration, and morning food are probably more important for our incredibly enjoyable, very scenic, but still modest 12er.
Agreed. Getting altitude sickness on a day hike seems incredibly improbable to me. From what I understand, altitude sickness only happens after sustained time at elevation.
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friendofThundergod
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by friendofThundergod »

@DallinW
I concur, I think there is probably some sort of middle ground between what Kyle posted, Scott, Joe and Jim...If you followed the guidelines in Joe's attached PDF for example...the Hump becomes a 2-3 day hike :lol:
If you go above 10,000 feet (3,048 meters), only increase your altitude by 1,000 feet (305 meters) per day
and for every 3,000 feet (915 meters) of elevation gained, take a rest day
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JasonCleghorn
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by JasonCleghorn »

Jim_H wrote:Acclimatize for Humphrey? Really? Okay.

Overall fitness, hydration, and morning food are probably more important for our incredibly enjoyable, very scenic, but still modest 12er. I would stay in Flag, if you want to be nearer to minimize AM drive times, which I get. I do not sleep well camping, so try not to.
It's more out of an abundance of caution for my out of town guest. If it was just me, I'd probably just 'go with it'. But I want to ensure he's OK,etc. That sort of thing.
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flagscott
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by flagscott »

Jason, did you know that Snowbowl Rd. is closed on Saturday morning? http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/coconino/ ... EPRD515198

Hmm, we weren't planning on doing Humphreys this weekend, but closed road = zero crowds on Humphreys. Might just have to wake up early on Saturday...
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syoung
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by syoung »

flagscott wrote:Jason, did you know that Snowbowl Rd. is closed on Saturday morning? http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/coconino/ ... EPRD515198

Hmm, we weren't planning on doing Humphreys this weekend, but closed road = zero crowds on Humphreys. Might just have to wake up early on Saturday...
Thanks for the heads up on this. I had no idea and was planning on making a trip up there this weekend. Ugh.
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JasonCleghorn
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by JasonCleghorn »

@flagscott

Also, thanks we're actually going on the 27th but good that you posted that!
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tibber
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by tibber »

may I suggest taking some aspirin for the altitude since your friend is from non-altitude. It can't hurt unless your friend has bad reaction to aspirin.
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CannondaleKid
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by CannondaleKid »

DallinW wrote:Getting altitude sickness on a day hike seems incredibly improbable to me. From what I understand, altitude sickness only happens after sustained time at elevation.
From my experience, it happens when you go too high too fast. We have to breathe faster to get the oxygen we need, which can cause headaches, loss of appetite, etc.. As we get used to the altitude, the symptoms go away.

From what I've run across over the years it seems even the 'experts' (whoever they are) don't know who will get it and who won't. And seemingly, neither your fitness level nor being male or female play a role in whether you get altitude sickness.

Because it varies greatly between individuals, I believe it is within the range of probability to happen on a day hike. One person coming from 1,000' going up to 14,000' may have absolutely no noticeable effects (other than breathing hard due to the exertion) and another may have severe headaches by 7-8,000 feet. There is simply no predictable factor as to who will get it at under what conditions.
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Tough_Boots
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by Tough_Boots »

It seems to me that elevation issues are generally unpredictable. Sometimes it doesn't bother me at all. Sometimes it slows me down. The last time I did Humphreys I threw up on the summit.
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SpiderLegs
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by SpiderLegs »

I've done Humphreys a few times. The first time I got very sick once I got on top. In a morning that still amazes me I left my old house in Avondale (which barely was over 1000 feet above sea level) at 7 AM. Made a quick pit stop in Flagstaff to drop off someone at their dad's house then hit Humphreys and was standing on the summit by 11:45 AM. So a gain of over 11,000 feet in under 5 hours. I was so dizzy up on top I could barely hike off. The one and only time I've ever been altitude sick.

The last time I spent the night in Flagstaff and had no issues at all.
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flagscott
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Re: Humphreys Acclimation Camp next Friday PM ?

Post by flagscott »

I was curious what science says on this issue, so I spent a little time browsing through scientific papers on acclimatization to altitude. Short answer is that I couldn't find any papers that have looked at effects of one night at altitude. But there are papers showing noticeable improvement by day 3. Given that, I would suspect that an overnight at altitude should have a positive effect, but it would probably be small.
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