This weekend I hiked 36.7 miles (Friday was 12.3, see next post)
Saturday and Sunday went sort of as planned: two days of hiking, bagging five peaks.
Saturday I hike North Twin to South Twin and down and up to Galehead.
I hiked solo and ran into a young man from Dover, NH who I chatted with most of the way. It was sunny and warmish and while I carried 2.5 liters of water and a filter, I worried about water all day. The views from the false summit of North Twin were amazing – I just love that blue of mountains in the distance.
After hiking the southern Presidentials yesterday (see next post) my legs were fatigued but somehow I was able to make it to South Twin. At the summit of South Twin I debated about Galehead. I think I had enough water but the route down to Galehead is relentless. 0.8 miles of downhill stairs as I remembered from the Pemi Loop last year.
I knew I just had to get Galehead done. I’ve been so close too many times so I just did it.
The stairs were relentless but actually not as bad as I remembered. Then onto Galehead. One sign said 0.4 another a bit later 0.5. My watch: 0.3 – an easy climb to Galehead with an outlook before the summit and back down to the hut.
As I started up South Twin I started counting. This works in running and it worked today. Getting back seemed not as hard and I was happy to be done with it. The up and down back to North Twin was okay and I had enough water. I ran out of water at mile nine knowing that at mile 10 or 11 I would get water from the Little River. I alternatively ran/hike the final two miles through the gorgeous fall foliage.
It was a good day.
Total mileage: 13.25
Passaconaway and Whiteface
On Sunday I hiked the loop counter clockwise. I may have been one of two people that did. Everyone I passed, and about eight dogs, went clockwise.
I chose Passaconaway first because, again, I got close to the peak twice the last few years and either was too tired or just skipped it. I had to do it, so I started with it.
The hike up Dicey Mill is really gradual with a few steep sections and then I turned right to go up to Passaconaway. A trail runner passed me and then after about five steep pitches I reached the summit with a little cairn.
I got confused about how to take the loop trail down so I went down the way I came up. Then on to Whiteface.
Despite being socked in most of the day, there were a few views of the wilderness breaking out.
I passed a pile of rocks, the true summit and up to the granite slabs.
I wasn’t looking forward to them and thank goodness they were dry. I think going down is the better option. Whiteface is definitely not one of my favorites but the loop is fun to run.
I finished the loop with two summits in 4 hours 26 minutes – 11.26 miles.
16 4,000 footers to go by November 14 at midnight.