views and smiles foreverHiking
After staying up too late last night looking at maps trying to make a decision about where to hike a mere six days after our last mountain adventure, we rolled out of bed at the as-yet acceptable time of 6:45am (soon to be the new and unacceptable-for-a-mountain-day 7:45am...) Since our cadence these days has been about one hike every other month, and with cold temps due to wind in exposed spots, we chose an oldie but a goodie, heading west not east to Camel's Hump in the Green Mountains.
The parking lot was nearly full and Burrows trail which we chose as our ascent leg was smooth and solid as a sidewalk. I was starting to question what the point of driving almost two hours each way to hike for maybe three and a half hours was. Up and up and up we went through the forest in classic New England style.
Then we reached the flat clearing before our final ascent. The sun shone warmly and as I walked out into it I noticed something I'd never seen before: the summit of Camel's Hump in clear and close view up above. It occurred to me then that I'd never hiked Camel's Hump on a clear day before. I donned my wind breaker and headed up the final push to the summit in high spirits.
I don't think I've experienced such high visibility in the mountains before. I could clearly make out the Presidential mountains, Franconia, and Moosilauke to the east and the Adirondacks which I know nothing about to the West. It was glorious. The summit was very cold in the wind (but definitely friendlier than last weekend's summit with the sun and a much shorter exposed section). The route down along the cliff side on the Long Trail was spectacularly beautiful and provided a total wind shelter so we could hang out and enjoy the views. We stopped just before the turn onto Forest City trail for our last beautiful view and to snack on some pastries from Red Hen.
Though the hike was a pretty short one, it was definitely well-worth it. Tacos in Montpelier and getting home before dark were just added perks.
Camel's Hump (4,081′)
Camel's Hump Rd, Huntington
Burrows Trail, Long Trail, Forest City Trail
5.7 miles, 2,808' ascent
Start 10:51 AM, 3:26 elapsed
Completely clear, windy at the summit
Burrows was a sidewalk (very stable monorail). Forest City was a ladder of stable boot prints.
Partners in Crime
Cody & Rye
Scoping out the hump and enjoying some sun before the windy summit
Presidentials in the background
Sun, glorious sun
Thanks to the kind soul who took this photo despite the freezing wind
Rye descending the ledges
Cody serious about pain au chocolat (thanks Red Hen)
White mountains in the distance under perfectly clear skies