Page 1 of 2

Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 5:01 pm
by SpiderLegs
So when the air quality around Phoenix is really poor, does anyone curtail their hiking activity? Anyone else suffering due to the dust and other particulates? I've been sidelined for the past two weeks or so since doing the Estrella ridge line. Think the 10 hours of huffing and puffing on polluted air sent my sinuses over the edge. Almost over the worst sinus infection I've had in the past 20 years. Hoping to get back out this weekend, but I've lost almost three weeks of working out.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 5:41 pm
by azbackpackr
Hmmm. Well, you could just not breathe. Would that work?

Seriously, though, I'm surprised at how good the air quality here in San Diego North County is. California's crack-down on polluters has worked. It was much worse here in the 70's. I am not sure how much of Phoenix's bad air is from vehicles, agriculture, power plants, other industry. Have you ever looked into that? I'm sure the information is available. Not that it will help you at the moment, but could provide a focus for some political activism, if you like that sort of thing.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 6:14 pm
by trekkin_gecko
i don't change anything

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 6:19 pm
by big_load
NJ has occasional high ozone alerts in the summer, due mainly to coal-fired electrical plants in PA. In my running days, I would have to slow down a bit, nothing more.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 6:48 pm
by kingsnake
No curtail, but don't really worry since all my longer hikes are out of town.

Btw, drove down to Casa Grande today for lunch. UUUUUUUUGLY. Looked like Phoenix last week, it was so awful ... :sk:

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 6:53 pm
by SpiderLegs
I normally don't change anything either. But this bout of dealing with a sinus infection just stinks. Missed out on two weekends of prime hiking weather.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 7:01 pm
by Bradshaws
The air pollution from dust, cars, lawnmowers and leaf blowers doesn't bother me as much as some of the noxious fumes coming off the people out hiking drenched in cologne or perfume :yuck:

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 7:34 pm
by azbackpackr
Bradshaws wrote:The air pollution from dust, cars, lawnmowers and leaf blowers doesn't bother me as much as some of the noxious fumes coming off the people out hiking drenched in cologne or perfume :yuck:
DITTO!!!! YUCK!!!! PERFUME IS NASTY!!!!!

Did You know that there are some places where governments have acknowledged that some people are either super-sensitive or actually allergic to perfumes, and it has been made illegal to wear it? That would be wonderful. I hate being near someone who has it on. Makes me very uncomfortable. And I have a poor sense of smell, but it still bugs me a lot.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 9:25 pm
by SpiderLegs
Bradshaws wrote:The air pollution from dust, cars, lawnmowers and leaf blowers doesn't bother me as much as some of the noxious fumes coming off the people out hiking drenched in cologne or perfume :yuck:

Can't stand the noxious noise coming from people's smart phones. Since moving out to the edge of town I don't have to deal with it as much, but hated listening to people's crap music on North Mountain and Squaw Peak when I lived in the 'Slope.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 16 2014 9:48 pm
by outdoor_lover
It may just be a coincidence that you got this at this time....There's a lot of stuff going around right now too...You were here most of last Winter too weren't you??? I don't take Air Quality into effect at all when I'm planning a Hike, unless I'm looking at it from a Photography standpoint...I've lived and worked outside in this muck for years, soooo Hiking is really no different.....I can only think of one time when I really had Sinus Trouble after a Hike and that's when we had a lot of Smoke blowing in from somewhere....

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 17 2014 6:14 am
by SpiderLegs
There is an interesting article that just started making the rounds on the internet a few days ago about the long term health of runners who train for ultra marathons. One of the things that researchers found was that they were more prone to allergy & sinus issues. The theory at this point is that because the people running are outside for so long that their exposure to allergens is higher. So I guess the theory would hold true for people who hike on a regular basis.

I've lived in Arizona on and off for 30 years now, but for some reason this winter has been the worst for sinuses.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 17 2014 6:34 am
by CannondaleKid
Although my Valley Fever was probably a result of being outside all the time since I moved here in '02 I haven't stopped being outside as much as possible, whether here in the valley or hiking elsewhere.

Otherwise I'd probably get sick from being indoors, whether mentally (already there?) or physically from the recycled germs, radon, etc., etc...
:M2C:

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 17 2014 6:59 am
by SpiderLegs
I usually don't let a small cold or general allergy issues stop me either. But a full blown case of sinusitis is another matter. It zaps all your energy and there is a slight chance that exercise may cause the infection to drop into your lungs. Going to chance it this weekend, think most of the infection is gone.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Jan 17 2014 1:31 pm
by azbackpackr
I've had VF but have never had a sinus infection in my entire life. Knock on wood...

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Feb 18 2014 9:01 pm
by Barrett
Other than hiking in the morning and avoiding high particulate days, you could always wear a particulate filter mask.
The big craze is the "Training Mask", which just restricts airflow but does not filter. The claims made by the manufacturer do not seem to hold up to scrutiny, and it seems like a much better idea to filter the air.
Techno makes an activated-charcoal filter mask designed specifically for working out, and will be far more effective than a hardware store mask. (If you can get used to it).

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Feb 19 2014 7:56 am
by RickVincent
Without winds and rain to knock the pollution out of the valley, air quality has really suffered. We need rain. Until then, you may need to rely on a particulate mask as suggested by Barrett.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Feb 19 2014 9:42 am
by kingsnake
Band of brown along the I-10 corridor within the past hour, but I can still clearly see the Estrellas from Sunyslope ...

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Oct 03 2015 7:27 pm
by Jim_H
Air quality must be excellent right now. I live near SR 51 and Indian School, and can see the Luke Mountains very clearly, and then South Mountain, Piestewa and North Mountain are all very clear. When can we expect the hazy, filthy days to begin? Not that I want them, I just wonder how long we have.

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Oct 03 2015 8:32 pm
by mazatzal
Jim_H wrote:Luke Mountains
Do you mean White Tanks?

Re: Poor Air Quality & Hiking

Posted: Oct 03 2015 9:12 pm
by Jim_H
Sure, which ever.