Thursday, February 15, 2018

Lincoln and Lafayette. February 14, 2018

Care about preserving the environment for future generations?  Care about clean air and water for your own generation?  Visit the website of Union of Concerned Scientists and learn about the important work this nonprofit organization does on behalf of the planet and of people everywhere.  You can support UCS by donating here.

Lincoln and Lafayette
2/14/2018
Falling Waters Trail, Franconia Ridge Trail, Greenleaf Trail, Old Bridle Path
8.9 miles
3,900 feet of elevation gain

Yesterday, on Valentine's Day, Mom and I hiked the Lincoln and Lafayette loop going up Falling Waters Trail and down Old Bridle Path.  This isn't the direction we usually take (we usually go up Old Bridle Path and come down Falling Waters Trail), but the temperatures were going to warm up that day, and we didn't want to be on Falling Waters Trail as the temperature rose in case those frozen waterfalls melted and became difficult to cross/navigate.

We started hiking in the dark, like always.  Even though the coldest temperatures of the day were in the morning, I didn't feel as cold as I usually do.  Someone's glove was on the trail sign.


Photo by Trish Herr



The sun was up by the time we arrived at the first clearing.






We continued hiking up to Little Haystack.


Photo by Trish Herr

The views from Little Haystack were gorgeous!  There were beautiful mountains, amazing light patterns, and interesting cloud formations.







The summit/intersection sign: 


After getting to the summit of Little Haystack, we kept hiking over to Lincoln.  I continued taking pictures along the way.



The wind and recent high temperatures have gotten rid of much of the snow on the ridge.






Right on the edge... 


Looking at what we have to climb...


The mystifying long string of clouds in the distance...


Hiking toward our destination...


Mount Washington in the distance, past the Bonds...


The remnants of the sunrise...


Cannon Mountain...


Going forward...


When we got to Mt. Lincoln, we saw an undercast.

Photo by Trish Herr



Clouds rushed toward us and swept over everything in their path.





The cloud formations were huge tentacles of water and air.




Suddenly, the clouds surrounded us and created thick fog.  We thought they might pass, but they sat on Lincoln and Lafayette for the rest of our hike.




On Mt. Truman, a bump between Lincoln and Lafayette, I came around a corner and saw Mom on the ground.  She had fallen on her knees and palms.  After sitting for a moment, we kept hiking to Lafayette, but she had to go slower than normal; her right knee was hurt and she could not bend it.  After hiking for a bit, we arrived on Mt. Lafayette.  Rime ice...


Mom was feeling pretty good, but her right knee was causing problems.  Her left knee was fine though thankfully, so she could put more weight on that side.  Here she is on the summit!


Photo by Trish Herr

Photo by Trish Herr

There were absolutely no views now.  I am glad we saw some on Little Haystack and while we were hiking up to Lincoln.


There was quite a bit of ice up there, but hiking on it was manageable with Microspikes.




One of the summit signs had been knocked over because of the wind!


After taking a quick break on Lafayette, we headed down to Greenleaf Hut.  Coming down Greenleaf Trail from the summit of Lafayette was difficult for Mom (it is hard to go downhill with a knee you can't bend very well), so that section of trail took a long time to hike.  She did a great job though, and she made it to the hut!


We took a break at the hut.  We grabbed food and water, delayered, and then started carefully hiking down Old Bridle Path.



Coming down Old Bridle Path went quicker than I expected, and Mom did a great job hiking with her hurt knee.  Later, her left wrist starting hurting, and she realized she couldn't bend her wrist either. 


Hair frozen, as usual...


Heading down...








Onward...


The clouds smothered Franconia Ridge.





Looking back up...




Hiking carefully...


It was easier for Mom to hike when the trail flattened out.



We made it back to the car without too much trouble.  The next day (today), Mom got x-rays and was told nothing had been broken.  Her wrist is sprained and her knee is badly banged up, but she should be able to hike again next week as long as she is careful this week.

Hope everyone had a great Valentine's Day!