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Topic: sun protection for arms and hands, in Yosemite high country< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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JRinGeorgia Search for posts by this member.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 19 2013, 11:03 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I will be doing 9 days in Yosemite starting in one month. Most of it will be above 8k, a lot pushing 10k, and of course at those elevations a lot of exposure. Never spent that much time in that kind of sun. I have a good sun hat for face and neck, my concern is my arms and hands.

I could get a long-sleeve hiking shirt like the many that Columbia et al make, but generally I am not very comfortable in long sleeves when hot, no matter what the common wisdom says is best. And I really dislike the feel of sleeves rolled up right into the crook of my elbow, which is where those hiking shirts tend to fall on me.

I generally prefer short sleeves, but I'm not sure if SPF 50 sun block on my arms is enough. I bought a pair of sun sleeves but they aren't comfortable (elastic at the top end too tight).

And for hands -- again, is strong sunscreen enough? Sun gloves? Wear long sleeves and pull them over the hands?

What do you do? I have a preference for short sleeves but also a preference to avoid sunburn and skin cancer, so what recommendations might you have for me? Thanks!


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 19 2013, 11:19 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I have fair hair and burn easily.  To counter this, I bought 2 long sleeved shirts from Mt Hardware that are synthetic.  They are very comfortable, and not binding at all.  For my hands, I use gloves when I remember to bring them.  :)  One trip in my kayak I forgot them, and I had 2nd degree burns on my hands.  That was all it took for me to remember them every trip now.I still get a strip of sun between the shirt and the gloves, but it is manageable.  SPF 50, or 30, will work but it will also pick up lots of dirt, which is also a good sun protector on its own.  

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 12:01 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Big floppy hat and good sun glasses. Thin, loose fitting, synthetic long-sleeved shirt and long pants. Fingerless bike gloves (my fingertips don't tend to get sun burned for some reason.) Now when you see me coming down the trail in Yosemite you can wave and say "hi Snus, you are easy to recognize!"
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 12:39 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JRinGeorgia @ Jun. 19 2013, 10:03 pm)
QUOTE
I will be doing 9 days in Yosemite starting in one month. Most of it will be above 8k, a lot pushing 10k, and of course at those elevations a lot of exposure. Never spent that much time in that kind of sun. I have a good sun hat for face and neck, my concern is my arms and hands.

I could get a long-sleeve hiking shirt like the many that Columbia et al make, but generally I am not very comfortable in long sleeves when hot, no matter what the common wisdom says is best. And I really dislike the feel of sleeves rolled up right into the crook of my elbow, which is where those hiking shirts tend to fall on me.

I generally prefer short sleeves, but I'm not sure if SPF 50 sun block on my arms is enough. I bought a pair of sun sleeves but they aren't comfortable (elastic at the top end too tight).

And for hands -- again, is strong sunscreen enough? Sun gloves? Wear long sleeves and pull them over the hands?

What do you do? I have a preference for short sleeves but also a preference to avoid sunburn and skin cancer, so what recommendations might you have for me? Thanks!

It's too bad you don't like wearing long sleeved shirts, because that's indeed the best form of sun protection for your arms.  I love REI's Sahara Tech shirts, wear 'em all the time for hiking, even at 90+ degrees in the desert.  No need to coat yourself in sunblock, but give your preferences, that's what you'll have to do.

A lightweight glove suitable for biking/hiking will protect your hands; there are also "sun gloves" for sale as well.  I actually use NRS' Rafter's Gloves, though only one, as I use just a single hiking staff (most of the time it's mainly for blister protection).  One tme when I did the Mt. Rose hike near Reno, NV, I realized I should have worn both gloves, as my right hand was fine after the hike but the back of my left hand was definitely over-tanned a bit. :D

Tom
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 12:47 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Sun block on the face, big brimmed hat, a merino T under a light and loose long sleeve nylon shirt, lightweight nylon pants (long) are my weapons. I just replaced the sun gloves I lost, too. And good sunglasses - it's not just snow fields, but granite in all forms that reflects light into the eyes.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 7:56 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Consumer reports recently tested sunscreens for effectiveness and claims.  Many claiming to be 50 were not, some claiming to be broad spectrum were not.  

The top sunscreen according to Consumer Reports: Wal-Mart Equate Ultra Protection SPF 50
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 10:29 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Long sleeves in a light color with the right fabric is the way to go

And these are excellent gloves


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 11:52 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(red dog @ Jun. 20 2013, 10:29 am)
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Long sleeves in a light color with the right fabric is the way to go

And these are excellent gloves

I really like those and I've used them quite a bit.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 12:59 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I am under doctor's orders (really!) to only wear big hat, long sleeves and long pants from now on when in the sun.  I have yet to have anything more than the will be one day's burned off, but I am well into double digits on those and just turned 40 on yesterday.  It is now 95 degrees here and 90% humidity, but I wear long sleeves when the sun is out and I bought a big hat and sunscreen up.  It is uncomfortable due to the humidity where I live, but it is better than the alternative.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 2:56 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I always wear a big floppy hat & shades, but will go with a t-shirt & shorts when it's warm enough. I use spf 30 or 50 sunscreen and re-apply a couple of times. Never been burned when I did that and I've been to 14,000' more times than I can remember.

We needed diversity of opinion.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 20 2013, 4:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I sunburn easily and wear long sleeves and long pants. I've never had much trouble with my hands, so I don't wear gloves. I'd imagine sunblock will work if you don't want long sleeves and gloves.

I also wear a full brimmed hat, but got sunburned on parts of my face once even with the hat. I hiked up Lassen Peak and thought the hat had me covered, but the reflection off the rock got me under the chin and bottom of the nose. The rock on Lassen Peak is dark colored, so it doesn't need to be light colored to reflect the rays. I now use sunblock on my face even with a sun hat when hiking at high elevation over rock.

---George
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 21 2013, 10:19 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(toejam @ Jun. 20 2013, 2:56 pm)
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I always wear a big floppy hat & shades, but will go with a t-shirt & shorts when it's warm enough. I use spf 30 or 50 sunscreen and re-apply a couple of times. Never been burned when I did that and I've been to 14,000' more times than I can remember.

We needed diversity of opinion.

You need to go by what your skin demands. If you never tan, always burn, and have already had a lesion removed from your back - 14,000 feet in granite wearing shorts and t shirt sounds like DEATH by incineration.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 21 2013, 11:33 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(AlmostThere @ Jun. 21 2013, 10:19 am)
QUOTE

(toejam @ Jun. 20 2013, 2:56 pm)
QUOTE
I always wear a big floppy hat & shades, but will go with a t-shirt & shorts when it's warm enough. I use spf 30 or 50 sunscreen and re-apply a couple of times. Never been burned when I did that and I've been to 14,000' more times than I can remember.

We needed diversity of opinion.

You need to go by what your skin demands. If you never tan, always burn, and have already had a lesion removed from your back - 14,000 feet in granite wearing shorts and t shirt sounds like DEATH by incineration.

And what your doctor recommends, based on family history, among other things!

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 21 2013, 3:25 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Just saying there are lots of people hiking in shorts & t-shirts in the high country and not getting fried, regardless of what the smart people here recommend.

Unless there was lots of snow, I've never noticed the sun on mountain tops being significantly more vicious than it was near my homes in Texas and Southern California. But then I've always used sunscreen at home and in the mountains.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 21 2013, 5:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/fgz/science/uv.php?wfo=fgz

"So how much more UV radiation am I receiving in Flagstaff, versus in Phoenix?

As mentioned earlier, UV radiation increases with altitude. This increase has been shown to be between 4-5% for every 1000 feet ascended. Thus, for the same day in June, the amount of UV radiation would be approximately 27% higher in Flagstaff than in Phoenix (about 6000 feet elevation difference). If you were going from Phoenix to the top of the San Francisco Peaks (approximately 12,000 feet), you would experience an increase in UV radiation of about 50%!

If you were to do this on a day in the winter with snowfall on the ground at Flagstaff, you would also have to factor in the affect of the reflection of UV radiation on the snow, and your UV exposure would go from 27% higher (just due to the elevation difference) to approximately 100% higher due to snow on the ground (snow is approximately four times more reflective than desert). While skiing up at 10,000 feet, you would receive about 200% higher levels of UV radiation than you would receive on the same day in the winter in Phoenix.

This underscores the important fact that protection from the sun should be even more of a concern for anyone who is planning activities at higher elevations, even in the winter."
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 21 2013, 6:35 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

And don't forget sunglasses that block UV.  My dad just had what doctors initially thought was a melanoma removed from his eye.  Fortunately, the biopsy turned out negative.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 21 2013, 8:23 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(toejam @ Jun. 21 2013, 3:25 pm)
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Just saying there are lots of people hiking in shorts & t-shirts in the high country and not getting fried, regardless of what the smart people here recommend.

I'll repeat it again - it depends on YOU and YOUR SKIN and your doctor's recommendations.

It's not smart to pretend that because the cool kids do it and don't suffer the consequences, anyone can.

Skin cancer? Mom had it. Cataracts? I had the surgery - AT THE AGE OF 35.

Protect your health, if you have a significant family history of melanoma, skin cancer, etc. And protect your eyes REGARDLESS because absent any trauma to the eye, medical condition such as diabetes, or chemotherapy (all of which can cause cataracts) the other reason for 'em is - lots of UV exposure. I hardly ever wore sunglasses because I saw no reason to. And then I started to just not see....


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 25 2013, 6:55 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Long sleeve lightweight loose shirt, sunscreen on my hands

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2013, 8:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

Thanks all. Late to reply 'cuz on a family trip right now (not BPing). Already on board with UV hat, sunglasses, ready to protect downward-facing skin that will be exposed to reflection off granite. I'm probably about average for propensity to sunburn.

As I expected, a great diversity of opinions and experiences. HSF, your stats and math are exactly the kind of info I think we all know intuitively and have me concerned, though I've never seen specific numbers on it, helpful stuff. Long sleeves clearly is the safest way to go, not as comfortable for me so wondering if I can make the trade-off to a sunscreen-only approach. I've seen those sun gloves before as well.

Ultimately, I'm just not sure if SPF 50 sunscreen on arms and hands will be enough for 9 days for 12 hours a day of substantial exposure at average 9k elevation with reflective granite. I probably will get a couple of lightweight l/s hiking shirts with high-rates SPF to try them out before the trip. Clearly l/s shirt and even gloves is the safest route, I'll try it out to see if I'm comfortable enough. Thanks!


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