I'm kind of a wing it girl but once I put my mind to something oh trust me are doing it. This has it's good and bad points. This I think was a good result. Last month I headed to New Hampshire with the plan to hike Mt. Monadnock but was turned away because there are no dog allowed in the park. Today I decided to try it again alone.
I looked for more info on the trails and had a plan to head up on the White Cross Trail as it seemed to have more rock to sort of grapple on the way up and I would come down the White Arrow Trail and take one of the smaller trails back through the woods to the lot where I was parked. Thinking by the end I would be tired and not having as much energy for the work needed to climb down. Lets just walk in the woods.
I was pretty concerned about layers and being prepared for the 36 degree temp I was expecting when I got there.
This board was super helpful but also not as accurate by the time I got there at 10:30. On the way up a Mt Volunteer was kind enough to share that the wind at the Summit was about 45 MPH. Well that will definitely be interesting.
I was also already having issues with layers. Not issues really but I was over layered. 1 went right back into my backpack and the next was tied around my waist as I started to make my way up and up. When she shared the wind speed I was thinking that I may need those layers later on. I was just concerned I would be trapped without the right stuff.
This is the photo of the Summit on the approach road. I am mad that I let my phone battery die because the view from the top was awesome and I could see this camp FAR in the distance. It's incredible where your feet can take you isn't it?
Funny that I decided to take this trail because I like the rock but I soon found out it was this and more of this and more the whole way up. It was work and quite a few stops to drink and just catch my breathe. After the trees started to fall away the top is just bald rock, some in sheets that looked kind of scary to me. I had to stop and deal with some fear a couple times but I am not a quitter. falling down the Mountain was a real fear a couple times on the way up and down from the very top.
The Summit was beautiful in all directions and I could see the Boston skyline. It was so windy and icy I actually almost fell over. People were tucked into every space in the rock that gave them some cover while they ate or rested. I wasn't so lucky and after having lost a glove on the climb up I didn't stay long. I sort of walked around in a circle trying to soak up as much of the good vibes a s possible and decided to look for the trail down.
The way down was a little more busy and I waited my turn for quite a while. Being this trail was like a one way up and one way down for a while. Once we hit the trees again groups were tucked in here and there resting and eating and I decided I needed that too. It was only like an hour and a half in maybe but it was a hard 1.5 hours.
Once I stepped off the little ledge I ate on I got to see that the next mile was like walking thru a creek. rocks and water and it went on all the way down. I was grateful to get off that trail and just be on a gravel road for a while. I was thirsty. Not good to feel this thirsty and cold. My naked hand was in my pocket as much as possible but I needed it to make my way down the roads and for balance.
In my head I am now making correction to gear for the next trip. Back up gloves being 1 thing and better pants being another. I didn't understand all these women in tight pants until I realized crap, I have insulated running pants. I should have had those on!
Tired and looking at a time of after 2pm and I needed to keep moving. Dark would be here soon and the sign when I entered back into the woods on the Parker trail said 1.5 miles to headquarters.
The leave cover was heavy and it was very wet everywhere. A couple of times I stepped into a mud hole I didn't see. The boots are water proof as long as the hole isn't deeper than your boot. I will say this wasn't as easy as I thought. You really could see what you were stepping on for almost the whole 1.5 miles.
BUT I came upon brooks bubbling and took a few minutes to just stand there and listen. At one point I was thinking this should be the sound I record and play while I chill. Funny thing is that it really isn't sound it is more like silence with an light sound of wind and leaves rustling. This would be my base to meditation if I can get a practice started.
There were more examples of beauty than I can count. As I said I am pissed my camera died as I didn't get pictures of the actual Summit or the trail on the way back including a really cool dam I walked back just as I returned to HQ. But that also means I didn't stop a million times for photos and I have the memories all to myself.
I know this post sounds tough and it was. Some people may even think why the hell would you do that again but I love it. I love the feeling of working that hard. I love the views. I love the quiet. I love the challenge. I loved being alone with nothing but my own resources.
I missed my partner but I now see that Lilly was not welcome there and why. It would not have been a safe hike for her or others. This was not a stroll in the woods. Today I plan on making it up to her with a local hike.