Hike: Black Cap, Cranmore, Hurricane

I shot up to the White Mountains to do some tracing of trails and a couple New Hampshire 500 Highest peaks. After the easy hike to Black Cap I headed to Cranmore Mountain and caught sight of a black bear cub off in the forest. I passed a bunch of mountain bikers on Cranmore Trail and wish I had brought my wallet when I discovered that there was an ice cream shop (with beer) at the top of the ski lifts. After heading back to the trail head I bushwhacked up to Hurricane Mountain. I decided to head down the road a little ways to approach the climb where it was less steep, but halfway up I found an old trail with blazes and cairns, and followed it to the summit and back down to the road (the more eastern route on the below map).

ROUTE

  • Parked at Black Cap Trail Head on Hurricane Road in Conway, New Hampshire
  • Hiked Black Cap Trail to summit of Black Cap
  • Right on Black Cap Spur to intersection with Black Cap Connector
  • Right on Black Cap Connector to intersection with Black Cap Trail
  • Left on Black Cap Trail to intersection with Cranmore Trail
  • Left on Cranmore Trail to summit of Cranmore Mountain and back
  • Left on Black Cap Trail to Trail Head
  • Left on Hurricane Road to get to more gentle slope of Hurricane Mountain
  • Bushwhack up Hurricane Mountain to old Hurricane Mountain Trail
  • Left on old Hurricane Mountain Trail to summit and back to road
  • Left on Hurricane Road back to Trail Head

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 06 June 2021
Distance: 6.3 miles
Moving Time: 02:15:43
Pace: 21:42/mile
Elevation Gain: 1581′

Tracing White Mountains Trails:
Black Cap Trail
Cranmore Trail
Black Cap Spur

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Bushwhack: The Twins and Shaw

I thought I’d be worn out after doing a training hike on Mount Chocorua the day before, but my legs felt fresh and I had a free day. So, I was targeted an area of the White Mountains closest to me with trails I haven’t hiked and peaks on the New Hampshire 500 Highest list. I ended up chosing Province Pond Trail and the northern peak of The Twins, and Mount Shaw. It looked like a nice combo of trail and bushwhack, and the total distance would only be around 6.5 miles. A shorter distance as it was approaching noon when I decided to go. What I didn’t expect was that the fire road leading to the trailhead was closed, which added another 4 miles. There were some rocky climbs during the bushwhack, and I came across a mountainside covered with hundreds of trillium, more than I’ve ever seen in once place. The views around Province Pond were particularly beautiful.

ROUTE

  • Parked at gate on FR450 off Green Hill Road in Chatham, NH
  • Hiked FR450 to Province Pond Trail
  • Left on Province Pond Trail to crossing of stream near Province Pond
  • Bushwhack to west to The Twins North Peak
  • Bushwhack to north to Mount Shaw
  • Bushwhack to east to FR39
  • Right to intersection with Province Pond Trail
  • Right on Province Pond Trail to Province Pond Shelter and back to trailhead on FR450
  • Right on FR450 back to gate

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 09 May 2021
Distance: 10.6 miles
Moving Time: 03:36:48
Pace: 20:22/mile
Elevation Gain: 2552′

Tracing White Mountains Trails:
Province Pond Trail

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Hike: Little Wildcat, Carter Dome, Hight

Jeff and I originally wanted to get one last hike in before the end of winter, but when I couldn’t swing it we instead hiked the next weekend. The idea was to Grid the Wildcats and Carters, as well as do some White Mountain trail tracing, and a couple small AT sections for me. We originally planned to hike up Wildcat Ski Resort, but shortly after arriving we were turned around and told that there was no uphill travel while the ski lifts are running. So we adjusted our plans and landed on just doing the Carters from Nineteen Mile Brook to northern trailhead of Imp Trail (where my car was already planted). On the way up Nineteen Mile we decided to do Little Wildcat Mountain, a New Hampshire 200 Highest, on a whim. But the day warmed up, and the snow turned to mashed potatoes. By the time we slogged out Little Wildcat and ascended Carter Dome I was exhausted. We ended up just doing Mount Hight and out. A good example for future me of being flexible enough to change plans and route to ensure the day is enjoyable.

ROUTE

  • Parked at Nineteen Mile Brook parking on Route 16 in Gorham, NH
  • Hike Nineteen Mile Brook Trail to around 2650′
  • Bushwhack to Little Wildcat Mountain and back
  • Continue up Nineteen Mile Brook Trail to intersection with Carter-Moriah Trail
  • Left on Carter-Moriah Trail over Carter Dome and Mount Hight to intersection with Carter Dome Trail at Zeta Pass
  • Left on Carter Dome Trail to Nineteen Mile Brook Trail
  • Right on Nineteen Mile Brook Trail back to parking

PHOTOS

VIDEO

STATS

Date: 27 March 2021
Distance: 10.8 miles
Moving Time: 04:44:46
Pace: 26:24/mile
Elevation Gain: 4524′

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Winter Hike: Duck Pond Mountain

On a beautifully cold February day, John, Jeff, Richard and I snowshoed up to Nancy Pond so we could bushwhack to another New Hampshire 200 Highest peak, the viewless Duck Pond Mountain. A few inches of powder over a packed trail made for good traction, and the bushwhack to Duck Pond was a little thick but otherwise easy. The highlight of the day was the perfect sun halo, and snowshoeing over the frozen Norcross Pond to the view of the Bonds across the Pemigewasset Wilderness.

ROUTE

  • Parked Nancy Pond Trail parking off Route 302 in Hart’s Location, NH
  • Snowshoed Nancy Pond Trail to Nancy Pond
  • Bushwhack to summit of Duck Pond Mountain and back
  • Bushwhack across Nancy Pond and Norcross Pond and back
  • Snowshoed down Nancy Pond Trail back to car

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 13 February 2021
Distance: 9.2 miles
Moving Time: 04:20:15
Pace: 28:25/mile
Elevation Gain: 2785′

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Winter Hike: Howe, Shelburne Moriah, Moriah

Jeff, John, Michael and I planned on taking a day off to hike Mount Washington on the second day of winter. The forecast showed Mount Washington in the clouds all day with gusty winds from the Northwest, and a some snow and increased winds in the afternoon. So we switched up our plans and did Mount Moriah via a Howe Peak bushwhack and over Shelburne Moriah Mountain. The weather and views weren’t great but I knocked off a New Hampshire 200 Highest, two trails red-lined, a new section of the AT, and got Mount Moriah for my December Grid and New Hampshire Winter 4000 Footer list.

ROUTE

  • Left vehicle at Rattle River Trail parking off Route 2 in Shelburne, NH
  • Parked at Shelburne Trail North parking off Conner Road in Shelburne, NH
  • Hiked up Shelburne Trail to intersection with Kenduskeag Trail
  • Bushwhacked east to Howe Peak and back
  • Turned right on Kenduskeag Trail over Shelburne Moriah Mountain to intersection with Carter-Moriah Trail
  • Turned right on Carter-Moriah Trail to Moriah spur trail
  • Turned left on Moriah spur trail and climbed to Mount Moriah summit and back
  • Turned right on Carter-Moriah Trail back to intersection with Kenduskeag Trail
  • Turned left on Kenduskeag Trail and returned to intersection with Rattle River Trail
  • Turned left on Rattle River Trail and hiked down to parking lot

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 22 December 2020
Distance: 14.8 miles
Moving Time: 07:18
Pace: 29:33/mile
Elevation Gain: 4019′

Tracing White Mountains Trails:
Kenduskeag Trail
Rattle River Trail

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Hike: Big Bickford, Lafayette & Eagle Cliff

Jeff, Richard and I headed to Franconia Notch on a relatively warm November day to ascend a few New Hampshire 200 Highest peaks. We also redlined a couple of trails and hit Mount Lafayette because it was in between. Big Bickford Mountain and Eagle Cliff didn’t have trails and were about as opposite as bushwhacks could be. Big Bickford was a fairly level and wide open bushwhack. While Eagle Cliff was shorter, it was much thicker and basically a cliff scramble in places. Due to mashed potato-like snow underfoot, the trip took longer than expected, and we finished the bushwhack and hike out by headlamp.

ROUTE

  • Left car at Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway parking lot on Tramway Drive, Franconia, NH
  • Started at Skookumchuck Trail parking off Route 3 in Franconia, NH
  • Hiked up Skookumchuck Trail to point at level with col between trail and Big Bickford Mountain
  • Bushwhacked north to Big Bickford Mountain and back
  • Continued left on Skookumchuck Trail to intersection with Garfield Ridge Trail
  • Turn right on Garfield Ridge Trail to Mount Lafayette summit
  • Turn right on Greenleaf Trail to gap at Eagle Cliff
  • Bushwhacked west to Eagle Cliff and back
  • Turn right on Greenleaf Trail and continued to trailhead near Tramway Drive

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 12 December 2020
Distance: 12.2 miles
Moving Time: 06:59
Pace: 34:17/mile
Elevation Gain: 4628′

Tracing White Mountains Trails:
Greenleaf Trail
Skookumchuck Trail

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Hike: Paugus and Chocorua

I hadn’t done Mount Paugus, and had a whole bunch of Tracing the White Mountains Trails to do, so I joined Jeff and Yudi for a hike. Not only did we enjoy the view at the south peak of Mount Paugus, but we also made the gnarly bushwhack out to the true summit for our New Hampshire 200 Highest lists. After Paugus, we continued to the always wonderful Mount Chocorua to finish up a few trails on its western side. It was a long but great day in the woods.

ROUTE

  • Parked at Liberty Trail parking on Chocorua Mountain Road, Albany, NH
  • Hiked up Chocorua Mountain Road to Whitin Brook Trail
  • Left on Whitin Brook Trail to Cabin Trail
  • Right on Cabin Trail to Lawrence Trail
  • Right on Lawrence Trail to south peak of Mount Paugus
  • Bushwhack to Mount Paugus true summit and back
  • Left on Old Paugus Trail to intersection of Bee Line Trail
  • Left on Bee Line Trail to Brook Trail
  • Left on Brook Trail to intersection with West Side Trail
  • Left on West Side Trail to Three Sister’s Trail
  • Right on Three Sister’s Trail to summit of Mount Chocorua
  • Down Liberty Trail to parking lot

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 21 November 2020
Distance: 15.1 miles
Moving Time: 06:47:48
Pace: 26:58/mile
Elevation Gain: 5021′

Tracing White Mountains Trails:
Liberty Trail
West Side Trail
Bee Line Trail Chocorua Branch
Bee Line Trail Paugus Branch
Whitin Brook Trail

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Hike: Engine Hill and Isolation

Jeff and I took advantage of a mid-November day with no snow on the ground to do some Tracing White Mountains Trails. We headed to the Dry River Wilderness where I traced 4 trails, got Mount Isolation for the 4th time on my Grid, and we bushwhacked South Engine Hill, adding it to our New Hampshire 200 Highest lists.

If you reproduce the bushwhack I highly suggest taking our western return route, it was wide open birch glade, while our more eastern route was thick spruce. head beyond the Engine Hill height of land and down to 3050′, head south until you are west of the peak and just climb uphill to the semi-clear summit.

ROUTE

  • Left car at Rocky Branch South Trailhead on Jericho Road, Glen, NH
  • Started at Rocky Brach North Trailhead of Pinkham Notch Road, Jackson, NH
  • Hiked up Rocky Branch Trail – North to height of land near Engine Hill
  • Bushwhacked south to South Engine Hill and back
  • Continued left on Rocky Branch Trail – North to intersection with Isolation Trail – East
  • Right on Isolation Trail – East to intersection with Davis Path
  • Left on Davis Path to intersection with Mount Isolation Spur
  • Right up Mount Isolation Spur to Mount Isolation and back to Davis Path
  • Left on Davis Path to intersection with Isolation Trail – East
  • Right on Isolation Trail – East to intersection with Rocky Branch Trail – South
  • Straight on Rocky Branch Trail – South to intersection with Stairs Col Trail
  • Right on Stairs Col Trail to intersection with Davis Path and back to Rocky Branch Trail – South
  • Right on Rocky Branch Trail – South to Rocky Branch South Trailhead

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 15 November 2020
Distance: 23.4 miles
Moving Time: 09:03
Pace: 23:15/mile
Elevation Gain: 5145′

Tracing White Mountains Trails:
Stairs Col Trail
Rocky Branch Trail – North
Rocky Branch Trail – South
Isolation Trail – East

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Trail Run: AT Surplus Mountain

Fueled by my previous hike where I completed a section of the Appalachian Trail, I headed to western Maine to do the same. In my mind I was going to take a few hours to trail run from the AT trailhead to Baldpate Mountain and back. It would complete another small section of the Appalachian Trail. In reality it took me nearly those two hours to do the first climb, Surplus Mountain, and I sucked down all of my water in the process. I still completed a small section, but now I’ll have to return to connect the in-between.

At the trail head I met a Native American AT thru hiker, True North, and his dog. He was keeping an eye out for a reportedly sick thru hiker, Mango, to give him a ride to town. I told him I’d keep an eye out for him, but I didn’t come across Mango during my run.

ROUTE

  • Parked at Dunn Falls Trail parking on Andover Road in Newry, ME
  • Ran south on Appalachian Trail until near the summit of Surplus Mountain
  • Bushwhacked to the summit of Surplus Mountain and back
  • Left on Appalachian Trail back to parked car

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 19 July 2020
Distance: 7.9 miles
Moving Time: 02:47:35
Pace: 21:06/mile
Elevation Gain: 2151′

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com

Hike: Tumbledown 2020

At the beginning of the Quarantine Summer of 2020, Lindsay and I camped for the weekend at Mount Blue state park and hiked the classic Tumbledown Mountain. The plan was to make a loop of all of the Tumbledown peaks and Little Jackson, starting and ending at Brook Trail. Our plans were foiled when a thunderstorm rolled in as we got to the most remote and true peak of Tumbledown, the north peak. We bailed and bushwhacked down to Tumbledown Pond, skirted around it and went back down Brook Trail. Of course, the sun was back out as we returned to Tumbledown Pond.

ROUTE

  • Parked at Brook Trail parking on Weld To Byron Road in Weld, ME
  • Hiked Brook Trail to intersection with Loop Trail at Tumbledown Pond
  • Left on Loop Trail to Tumbledown East Peak and Tumbledown Southwest Peak and back to intersection with Tumbledown North Peak bushwhack
  • Left on Tumbledown North Peak bushwhack to Tumbledown North Peak and col between Tumbledown Mountain and Little Jackson Mountain
  • Right on bushwhack around Tumbledown Pond back to intersection with Brook Trail
  • Left on Brook Trail back to parking

PHOTOS

STATS

Date: 06 June 2020
Distance: 6.8 miles
Moving Time: 03:44:38
Pace: 32:53/mile
Elevation Gain: 2065′

Contact Me

maine.wanderlust@gmail.com