Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Mount Starr King & Mount Waumbek (5/28/13)

Mt. Starr King
--2.6 mi (one way)--

Mt. Waumbek
--3.6 mi (one way) & 1 mi from Mt Starr King--

The trail head begins at the end of Starr King Road in Jefferson, NH. The road is located right across the main road from the Waumbek golf course entrance. There is no fee. Drive slow up this dirt road, I bottomed out a couple times.

This was a great hike...well besides all the mud! My friend and I had to cross the trail many times to walk on the least muddiest side. There were also a couple of trees down on the trail.



I'm not sure about distance, but I'm guessing the first 1.5 miles or so were the hardest. Only because, like mentioned before, the mud and also because it was steep. I'm glad it was gradually steep though!

The trail is well shaded from the sun and wind (although there wasn't wind today, I can only assume). It becomes less steep the closer you get to the half way point. **TIP** To know if you're nearing the middle/top of Mt Starr King, the trees will change and moss will be on the rocks/ground (I need to learn my types of trees!).

Once the steepness was gone, my friend and I power hiked the rest of the way to Mt Starr King. Just a great workout that's for sure! There was a little bit of snow on the this summit. Here's what we saw today:

I read somewhere that there used to be a shelter here and this fireplace is the last standing part of it.

On the right side of that fire place is the trail to continue onto Mt Waumbek!

Look for that "Path" sign.

From here, it was only 1 mile until the 4,006' summit. It's the 46th tallest mountian in New Hampshire. (My second 4,000 Footer hiked from the list). This 1 mile hike was really easy, another time to power hike and get great cardio in. 

A lot more snow

The sign that you're at the summit. 

There wasn't ANY view from the summit of Mt Waumbek. It was a little disappointed so we decided to hike further down the Kilkenny Trail. After about maybe 20 feet, there was a clearing where we got some great views! 

Zoomed into Bretton Woods Ski Area! 

To return we hiked back down the same way we ascended the mountain, stopping again on Mt Starr King. Round trip, this hike was 7.2 miles. We started a little before 10 and was down after 2. 

Monday, May 27, 2013

Mount Tecumseh (5/27/13)

--5 mi RT--

Over the past week, we've experienced A LOT of rain and even snow in northern NH (yes in May!) Finally a break comes with promises of blue skies. It was really windy and chilly all day but it didn't prevent my friends and I from hiking our first 4,000 Footer of the year (for some, it was their first one ever!)

Mt. Tecumseh is located in Waterville Valley. Take Exit 28 off from 93 n/s. Follow that road until Tripoli Road on the left. Follow it until the ski area. Turn onto the ski area road and park in lot 1. (no fees). The trail-head is located next to the parking area.

When I was planning this, I wanted to hike something bigger but not too crazy. So I decided to hike Mt. Tecumseh since its the smallest on the 4,000 Footer's list reaching at 4,003 feet.

On our drive down, the Presidentials and Franconia Notch were covered with snow. I was worried that this mountian would have as much snow as Cannon Mountain did, but thankfully there wasn't! The weather was beautiful, the leaves on the trees bright green.


From the amount of rain we got within the past week, I'm surprised the stream we had to cross wasn't any deeper! It was still difficult finding rocks to step on to get across. 

There was A LOT of mud...this wasn't even the worst! My hiking boots are covered in mud!

This is from the first view point (and I think half way point)

It was SOOOO steep...pretty much the majority of the hike was like this!

The summit is at that clear opening in the upper left hand side of this picture


I'm making this picture bigger because it's a little difficult to see Mt. Washington in the distance, covered in snow. What a beautiful sight! 

Group photo! 

When we got to the top, two other hikers were up there. Then gradually more and more hikers reached the top, not even 10 minutes after us. It was crazy how close together all 21 (YES 21) of us hikers reached the top within close time coming from all different trails. The summit quickly became busy and was just too much. On our decent, there were many more hikers climbing up. 

I LOVE stopping and talking to other hikers. Everyone is so friendly! Most were surprised we began our hike at 8 AM. At that time, we were the only car in the lot. 

Love this :) It was a great photo op.

This hike was challenging because of the steepness. I personally feel hiking other larger mountains are easier than this! 

But get out there and hike! 

Friday, May 24, 2013

Zealand Falls (5/22/2013)

Such a beautiful hike this was! I get really hyped up on waterfalls, flowers, and nature when I'm hiking. Zealand Falls is gorgeous!! (I was jumping up and down in my head when I heard the rushing water in the distance) :)

It was raining a couple days before we went. So glad it held off until AFTER our hike! I think I even got some more sun, my tan lines are more defined. Aw yeah! 

To get to the trail head, turn into Zealand Campgrounds off route 302 in Twin Mountain/Bretton Woods. Follow that road until you can't drive anymore. ($3 for parking). There are a couple other trails you are able to hike to get to the hut, but my friends and I took the Zealand Trail. It was a little over 2.3 miles. Easy hike since it was all flat. When you are about .1-.2 miles from the hut, it gets really steep. (Don't forget to stop halfway up this part to check out the falls!) 


Lots of streams to cross over

Bottom of the falls...

Middle of the falls...

And the top! :)

             ((I love this picture!!))

Thankfully the water wasn't too high. We were able to take our shoes off and cross over to the other side of the falls to have lunch and relax. The hut is beautiful! Looked like newly renovated bunks...but I could be wrong (??). I would definitely love to spend a weekend up there!


For Tara, Jonny, Byron and Adam: "THERE'S JUST SO MUCH NATURE!" :') 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Painting the Mountains

So as you may tell from the title of this post, I didn't hike anything today. I wanted to, but my Mom had a co-worker come over to the house to give us a Bob Ross art class. (If you don't know who Bob Ross is, stop reading, google his paintings, then come back). :)

I had so much fun, and I can't wait for it to dry so I can from it so I can hang it up! This was my first time painting ever! (oil painting). Such a different form of art than my photography I love doing.

Here's kind of the step-by-step of my painting:

Lovely looking clouds

My mountains :D

Added the background trees, water, and land

Added some trees

My final piece!! I absolutely love it! can't wait to do it again!

This is my Mom's painting...with her random falling tree :P Although, her mountains are a lot better than mine.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Mt. Pemigewasset (5/6/13)


"Mount Pemi-what?!" was the expression I got when I told people where I hiked this last time. I like to just call it Mt. Pemi, but when I want to be technical, I use the whole name. lol.

This was my first ever solo hike!!! I was so afraid but it was worth it. I was so afraid of being by myself, in the middle of the woods I didn't know and I was hoping I wouldn't see any bears! Thankfully, I didn't see anything, but a GREAT view!

The hike was long, not time or length was, but probably felt long being by myself. The trail was Ok is most areas but there were a lot of fallen trees (and I could hear trees falling in the distance) and it was also extremely muddy.


And the FIRST thing you see:

I could see so far! Such a great day for this hike. When I got to the top, there was another solo hiker. He was really nice, gave me some tips and advice for solo hiking. He hikes by himself all the time, and this was his first one of the year. I really love everyone (so far) who I've met on trails. They're soooo nice and happy!

Favorite Picture

One of the creepiest part of this hike was the ledge...what a longggg way down! (If you hike this, be careful not to get too close!!)

One of the best parts about this hike and being on my own was the peace I was able to experience. Just laying on the summit, looking up at the sky, just listening to nature and nothing else. 

Crazy hair (ALWAYS!) and can you tell I love purple?! :)

I named my pack, Oz. For the magical places we're going to see! :)