An intrepid party of eight Scouts and Adult Leaders backpacked (deliberately!) into the first significant snowstorm of 2016/17. Saturday dawn was cloudless and cool, but as we started walking in Dolly Sods, the dark clouds of the approaching cold front overspread the sky. Just after our first fording of Red Creek, light showers started for about two hours. Then light snow, as the temp dropped. Everyone preferred the snow to the rain.
Four hours in, we found a beautiful, spacious campsite with ample firewood and next to a stream. Then, an excellent rice concoction for dinner and stories around the fire.
By a very grey dawn, about 5 inches of snow was on the ground, and the temp about 20 F. Fortunately, the wind was breezy but not as high and blustery as predicted. After hot chocolate and oatmeal, we were on the way back along a shorter route.
Again back at Red Creek, we sat in the snow, took shoes off, put river shoes on and forded the creek. We got back to the cars at 1230pm, and the heaters were turned on immediately.
An advanced backpack in every way, and some valuable apparel lessons were learned (not the easy way). No one complained though.