Monday, December 9, 2013

Trail Report: Mount Garfield

Nov 9, 2013

It's not quite winter but the air is getting colder and the snow and ice is starting to show up on the mountains.  The temps today were about 30 degrees at the base and 19 degrees at the summit with a slight wind.  I wore a shell most of the day, at our food break I put on my winter jacket.  By the time we got half way down the mountain I was ready to remove the winter coat.  We both brought our microspikes but ended up not using them.  This was probably a mistake.  The ice near the summit was bad in a few sections.


Trailhead sign

Just like the Twins, this trail was flat for a while

As we started to ascend snow started to appear

The higher we went the bigger the ice flows were

The ice and snow covered trees are always a pretty sight

This sign doesn't actually tell you how far to the summit of Garfield but it's about 10-15 minutes from here

Me @ the summit of Mount Garfield 4,501'

Tony @ the summit of Mount Garfield 4,501'

Foundation of an old building at the summit
(old fire tower maybe?)

Very overcast today

More beautiful ice covered trees

I believe the two pointy mountains behind Tony are
Mount Flume and Mount Liberty

I'm looking at Mount Lafayette in the clouds

Nice view from the summit

Mount Lafayette in the clouds

Another nice view

 GPS Track

GPS Track

GPS Track

Summit of Mount Garfield....: 4,501'
Total hike time (round trip)..: 6h 26m
Elevation Gain......................: 3,101'
Distance (round trip)............: 10.75m
Trails: Garfield Trail and Garfield Ridge Trail

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Trail Report: North and South Twin

October 10, 2013

A little late on my reports, this is report one of two that are way overdue.

Tony and I had been talking about the Twins for a while, it was a beautiful day so we decided to take the day off from work and hit the trail!   The temps were nice, a little cool in the morning but then it warmed up quickly.  I would certainly recommend this hike for anyone that is just starting out with the 4000 footers.  North Twin sits at 4,761' and South Twin is 4,902'.  It's a little long at almost 13 miles, but it's not very steep.  There were many stream crossings early in the hike.  No views at all along the trail and North Twin is a wooded summit.  The view just before you walk to the summit of North is spectacular, as you will see in the pictures.  South Twin is fully exposed and also has an outstanding view.

 We were the only ones hiking today

 The trail can be hard to see this time of year
with all the leaves covering it

 There were a number of high water stream crossings

 After wasting 15 minutes trying to find a way across
we ended up fording our way

 The trail never really got steep.  It was like this most
of the way up with a very gradual incline

 Tony fording another stream
I should mention the stream was ice cold

 There were only a few areas that were steep

When you first come out of the trees you are about 150' away from the summit (which is tree covered), but you get an outstanding view right before the trek over to the summit cairn.

View near the summit of North Twin

View near the summit of North Twin
 Some orange foliage

Mount Washington from North Twin

Looking over at South Twin from North Twin

The bald spot on the back of my head is getting bigger

Tony @ the official summit of North Twin 4,761'

Me @ the North Twin summit 4,761'

Spur trail sign over to South Twin

Galehead Hut

We ran into another hiker who took this picture for us
This is a view near the summit of North Twin
I believe that is Mount Lafayette behind us

Heading over to South Twin

Tony @ Summit of South Twin 4,902'

Me @ Summit of South Twin 4,902'
That is North Twin behind me

View from summit of South Twin

Looking at North Twin from summit of South Twin

Haystack, Lincoln and Lafayette
from summit of South Twin

Our ritual summit brews

Tony enjoying the view

Don't get to close to the edge

GPS Track

GPS Track

Summit of North Twin..........: 4,761'
Summit of South Twin..........: 4,902'
Total hike time (round trip)..: 8h 56m
Elevation Gain......................: 3,804'
Distance (round trip)............: 12.83m
Trails: North Twin Trail and North Twin Spur Trail

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Trail Report: Mount Madison

Sept. 28, 2013

Tony called this "a big boy hike".  It was.  3 days later my quads are still sore.  The original plan was to hit Cannon Mountain with Melon and Stoonge, but they both backed out due to other issues.  So we decided to climb one of the Presidentials.  There was some talk of hitting both Madison and Adams but it quickly became apparent that this was not going to happen.  Madison via the Howker trail was strenuous, especially the last 700-800' of elevation.

The day started off with Kellie getting a flat tire as she pulled into my driveway, we quickly changed it but decided it was not worth driving 2.5 hours North on a donut spare.  We moved all the gear to my care and then headed out, only to realize a couple of miles up the road I left the map and driving directions in Kellie's car.  We turned around and went back.  The day was not starting out on a good note.

The weather was beautiful.  Not a cloud in the sky, 60 degrees at the base of the mountain and winds were about 5mph.  A perfect fall day for a hike.  The foliage wasn't at peak but it also wasn't bad.

Trailhead Sign

The journey begins

Stairs Fall

Kellie, Julie, Tony

Not a great picture but it was the first view from the trail

A little higher up

Some animal with an upset stomach

Howker Trail was really steep in some sections

Our destination - So far away!

View from one of the four Howks

The foliage was not great but it was starting to show

The summit is actually not visible, it is behind the peak behind me.  From this spot we were already 2.5 hours into the hike

Tony, Julie, Kellie

The warning sign on all the Presidentials

The town of North Conway in the distance

Marching on

Getting higher up

Another great view

I do not remember what ski area this is
Bretton Woods?

This looks like the summit but it's not - we are very close though

Kellie waiting for me at the cairn

This is the actual summit of Mount Madison 5,367'

Kellie, Julie and Tony @ the summit - waiting for my slow ass

 Mount Washington and the auto road

A very happy Kellie that we made it

Tony, Julie, Mike, Kellie
Summit of Mount Madison 5,367'

Looking over at Mount Adams

View from the summit

Tony and I have officially done 24 of the 48

Another view from summit

Heading down to the Madison Springs Hut

Madison Springs Hut

Madison Springs Hut - Closed for the season

Looking up at Mount Madison from the hut

Final view before descending into the trees

Some foliage

More foliage

GPS Track
We went up the left side and down the right

Heed these warnings!

On the way home from the hike, heading down RT 3 at about 60mph the car in front of me starts to skid and then turned side ways.  As it does it hits the legs of a giant moose that jumped over the guardrail.  The moose fell to the ground and then got up and limped to the side of the road.  I rolled up next to the car and the driver said everyone was ok.  My entire life I have seen these signs but I have never seen a moose actually cross the road, ever.  This was a wake up call.  If we had arrived at that spot 15 seconds earlier, it would have been me that hit that moose.

Summit of Mount Madison: 5,367'
Total hike time (round trip)..: 8h 52m
Elevation Gain.....................: 4,450' *
Distance (round trip)...........: 10.49m
Trails: Howker Ridge Trail, Osgood Trail (AT), Valley Way Trail, Randolf Path

* Taken from another website as I left my GPS on after the hike and the elevation gain was not correct