Plan B: Mt. Pemigewasset, NH – 6/29/08

June 30, 2008 at 8:31 pm Leave a comment

The motivation for this weekend’s trip started with a Trek and Gary Fisher mountain bike demo in northern Vermont… a chance to take a $6000 mountain bike out for a spin, just in case you happen to have a few extra dollars lying around. In this case, Aaron is trying to decide if he should upgrade the parts on his old hard tail bike or go for full suspension. I was just along for the ride… and the riding. The demo was on Saturday… KB: “Aaron, what are you doing on Sunday? Wanna stay up north and go out for a cheeseburger on Sunday?” Aaron: “Um, sure? I guess so.” A new recruit for the mission. Cool.

The weather forecast this weekend for northern VT and NH called for a 30% chance of rain on Saturday and 60% on Sunday. The bike demo was on Saturday… well, we’ll see what happens on Sunday. I don’t mind hiking in the rain.

Saturday’s forecast actually turned out to be right on the money… we got a few hours of biking in under a cloudy but dry sky, then a light rain started falling towards the end of the afternoon that was mostly blocked by the forest canopy. The Kingdom Trails in Vermont are excellent if anyone happens to fancy mountain biking in New England. If Sunday’s weather is only twice as bad as this, we’ll have a good hike!

We drove back south and set camp North Woodstock NH, a short drive from the Franconia Notch State Park. We cleaned up and hit the local brewpub, the Woodstock Inn Station and Brewery, for dinner, a couple of pints, and two bison cheeseburgers to go.

The Plan for Sunday: Flume Slide Trail to Mt. Flume (4328′), Franconia Ridge Trail to Mt. Liberty (4459′), Liberty Spring Trail back to trail head.

The Reality of Sunday: Shortly after 7am, a torrential downpour started. We packed up the tent in the rain and drove into town for breakfast. KB: “I don’t mind hiking in this.” Aaron: [blink blink]. Then we saw the lightening. KB: “Maybe it’s time to start thinking of Plan B. There are some smaller summits around here. Lightening always goes for the highest point, right?” (I know full well that’s a lie, I was just hoping Aaron didn’t know that.) Out came the trail map and guide book. KB: “Look, this summit is almost 2000 feet lower, and the trail is only 1.8 miles. Why don’t we drive to the trailhead and asses the situation from there?”

By the time we reached the parking for the trail, the rain was now a light drizzle. We donned our boots and rain gear, filled our water bottles, drained our bladders, and started to secure the Jeep. Aaron put on a poncho and right on cue, the rain stopped. KB: “You’re not allowed to take that poncho off, clearly that’s the reason the rain stopped.” Aaron: “I’m still not going up on that ridge, let’s do the little hill.” KB: “Okay.” Plan B was on.

The White Mountain Guide’s description of the Pemigewasset Trail concludes with this sentence: “At the true summit, which is just beyond the first ledges and a bit to the left, there is a fine northeast view.” We saw clouds. I described to Aaron the view of Mt. Flume and Mt. Liberty that we would have been looking at across the Franconia Notch, we ate our bison cheeseburgers on Mt. Pemigewasset (2557′), took some photos, and descended on the Indian Head Trail.

Once back at the trail head, the weather had cleared more and we could see the summit of Pemigewasset, but we never could see the summits of Flume or Liberty for the cloud cover, so Plan B was probably a good call.

One new summit, two cheeseburgers, and a new hiker, Aaron, who shall now be known as Red Bull, for his red hair (everywhere except on his head) and his ability to make up stories in three different languages.

Aaron\'s first Summit Cheeseburger

A fine weekend!!


Entry filed under: New Hampshire Summits.

Bog Mountain, NH alt.cheeseburger.transportation – 7/04/08

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The Mission

To encourage, enable, and document the consumption of a Cheeseburger on every summit on earth.
June 2008
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