This weekend, I did the Seward Range, the 4 furthest most west high peaks. This area is actually slightly familiar to me as I worked at a summer camp not far from there when I was in my teens. I also had hiked Ampersand mountain, which is just north of the Sewards, when I was 12, camping at that scout camp my first time. These being the furthest west, that also meant they took about 3 hours for me to reach, unlike everything else I've done that has been 2-2.5 hours. I went up via Indian Lake, Blue Mountain Lake, Long Lake and Tupper Lake, the latter 3 being tourist areas, and definitely
Thursday, I hiked the Santanoni range starting around 645. The hike starts with an old forest road that has a couple washouts, but nothing bad. When you get to the trail, the first half mile or so was amazingly good. You see a sign why shortly in, it's the site of active trail crew work, so I expect this trail to get better over the year. Overall, the marked trail is easy to moderate. The only really bad spot is the half mile before you reach the Santanoni herd path where you're rock hopping up a stream.
This coming weekend, I'll be doing the Sewards. Here I will be parking at the end of Coreys road, and hike about 4.5 miles in to set up camp on Friday afternoon. Saturday, I will then go up Seward (4361', #24), Donaldson (4140', #33) and Emmons (4040', #40) then back over Donaldson and Seward for an 8.4 mile hike. Alternatively, as the descent is easier than going down Seward per reviews, I may go back up Donaldson, and then go down the trail there and around, making it at 13 mile day (most on relatively flat land). This is the loop shown on the map below. Sunday, I'll pack up, go up S
Thursday, I plan to do the Sananoni range, something I had planned to do this week as part of the week long camping trip, but planned to do as a multi-day trip. It can be done as a single day though running about 15 miles, half of which are on herd paths. The plan is to get on the trail by 7, ideally 630, and go in, up Sanantoni via the "Sanantoni Express", cross over to Panther, and then do the 4 miles (2 in and out) to Couchsachraga, which involves going through a high elevation muddy marsh/swamp once I get to the col between the mountains. The worst part is that I need to cross this,
Sunday, I set out for what I expected to be a very long day...
Saturday, I started what I had hoped to be a week long trip to the high peaks (see Allen for why it wasn't). The hike in to the flowed lands was nice. Took about 2.5-3 hours with a 60 pound pack. The weather was wonderful and the trail is a well traveled and easy to moderate trail. I got to the Calamity lean to and found a campsite a short ways away and set up camp. By 10 AM, I was on the trail to go up Marshall.
So my next trip is going to involve camping and forming a base camp to hit a total of 8 mountains.... well, actually, potentially forming 3 base camps. This is to hit everything that comes out of the Upper Works/Tahawas area of the park. The plan is to hike in to the flowed lands or lake Colden and set up camp.
Yesterday I started off at Roaring Brook trailhead and had a second attempt at Rocky Ridge Peak, and the thought that if it was clear, I'd also top Giant again. Overall, the hike up Roaring Brook was not that bad. It is 0.4 miles longer than the Ridge Trail, and about 500 more feet in elevation gain, but overall until the last half mile of the trail it wasn't that bad. The last half mile until it hit the Ridge Trail though was a bit rough, not not really horrible overall. When I got up to the split for Rocky, that trail was a PITA. The top 1/2 of the trail down into the col between the
My first attempt at Rocky Ridge was in combination with Giant peak. It was my first hike of the year up in the 'Daks, and I encountered a lot of snow and ice on the trail. In short, I was not really ready for that hike. I've done 4 more mountains since, and am in slightly better shape now than I was then. I have decided to take a different route to the top...
I got up to the mountain about a quarter of 7 and was on the trail by 7. It was on and off drizzle/rain for the first hour or so. Being that it was forested, I didn't get horribly wet. The wind was also rather consistent and strong the whole hike up. As you can see in the stats below, this was a relatively short hike, GPS tracked it as 5.44 miles, officially it's supposed to be 6.2 miles. This is probably because I turned down the sensitivity of the mapper. I decided to do Porter first as it is the smaller of the two. The trail was a stream the whole way down to the col, swampy at th