Friday, March 15, 2019

Zealand and the Bonds, 3/2/2019 (Sage's Winter 4K Finish!)

Please donate and subscribe to Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).  UCS is a non-profit organization that does important scientific research.

Zealand, Guyot, West Bond, Bond, and Bondcliff Peaks
3/2/2019
Zealand, Twinway, Bondcliff, Wilderness, and Lincoln Woods Trails
23.5 Miles
4,100 Feet of Elevation Gain

Before arriving at the official trailhead, we had a four-mile roadwalk.  Since it was early in the morning, the walk seemed to go by fairly quickly.

After the roadwalk, the sky lightened.  We started to make our way up to Zealand Falls and the hut.





Once we got to the hut, we rested for a few minutes to grab a snack.  The view from the hut was beautiful.




A nice hiker took a picture of all three of us.

Photo by Trish Herr

The trail was packed out to Zealand and Guyot, so we were grateful for that.  



It was a scenic day; I could see views in all directions.


The snow was so deep that the Zealand summit sign, which is normally above Mom's head, was at our feet.  


Us on the summit of Zealand!

Photo by Trish Herr

After Zealand, we headed over to Guyot.  The day remained clear and stellar.



We had a little bit of trouble finding the path to the summit of Guyot, but we could see the top, so we just made our way over there.




We were happy to reach the summit of Guyot!



Mom, Sage, and I at the top:




After Guyot, we tried to make our way toward West Bond.  After a few tenths of a mile, we lost the path, and we came upon a couple of women who were lost as well.  We spent a long time trying to find the trail, and after a while, the two women turned back.  We, however, continued and eventually made it to the Guyot Campsite.  From there, we got lost again, but we found our way to the West Bond Spur after spending more time fighting through tree branches and deep snow.  Along the line, we spotted a few gray jays.



I was so grateful that we found the spur!  After that, it wasn't too difficult making it to West Bond.  Another hiking group caught up to us along the way and helped us pack out the trail.


I hadn't been to the summit of West Bond in years; I forgot how pointy the peak is.  Being on top of the summit made me feel more up high.



One of the friendly hikers from the group took a picture of the three of us on West Bond.

Photo by Trish Herr
Hiking up Mt. Bond felt like a breeze compared to what we had been doing earlier; prior to Bond, we fought through deep snow and tree branches that were constantly in our faces.  This was Sage and me on Bond:

Photo by Trish Herr



Sage and me...

Photo by Trish Herr
When we got to Bondcliff, it was fairly late in the day, so we ate quickly and began to head down.


Bondcliff was Sage's winter finish!  She hadn't officially completed her Winter 48 prior to that day; she was focused on the Grid and didn't concern herself so much with her winters.  Congratulations to Sage for finishing the Winter 48!

Photo by Trish Herr



Sage again...



After a very long hike down, we finally got to Lincoln Woods Trail.  We all were exhausted; it was late at night and we had hiked many miles that day.  We trudged on and just kept going.


The trail from after the Lincoln Woods intersection was flat for miles.


At around 10:30 PM, we finished the hike.  This was Sage and me at the trailhead.  We were so excited to have completed the long traverse!

Photo by Trish Herr

I have never been sorer than I was that night.  My thighs hurt so much that I could barely lift up my knees.  It felt so amazing to sit in a car after such a long day.  We had a very tiring but great hike!

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Liberty and Flume on a Windy Day, 2/16/2019

Please donate to Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) and subscribe to their newsletter.  UCS is a nonprofit organization that does important scientific research; much of this research is done to study climate change and determine what we can do to prevent and deal with its negative effects.

Don't forget to check out Sage's blog!  We take turns writing the trip reports, so this blog only contains half our current hikes; Sage's blog contains the other half.

Liberty and Flume
2/16/2019
Liberty Springs Trail, Franconia Ridge Trail
Around 11 Miles
4,250 Feet of Elevation Gain

We now start our hikes a bit later than we did in the past.  I think this is because we are trying to let ourselves sleep in more.  It is really nice, at least for me, to start the hike in daylight instead of before the sun appears; when we start our hike and it is light outside, I feel more energetic and determined to begin than when it is dark.  

It was fairly cold this day, so I tried not to take too many pictures; when I take my hands out of my mittens in low-temperature weather, they start feeling numb, tingly, and then painful real quick.

Although there were some wispy clouds here and there, we could see well enough.  The views that we witnessed were beautiful.  We had to break out the trail, but between the peaks on the way back, we ran into other hikers.  After that, the trail became more and more packed out as others hiked on the trail too.

Also, it was amazing to know that we were walking on treetops right beneath the snow.


There was the summit of Liberty!  I love how the rocks look in the following image:



Some mysterious-looking views...



This was Sage and me on Liberty's summit:

Photo by Trish Herr


Mom and Sage on Liberty:


We were in fairly high spirits when we got to Flume.  We discussed the possibility of going down the Flume Slide, but we decided that it would be too dangerous.  We therefore went back up over Liberty and down Liberty Springs Trail.  






After we went back to Liberty and started heading down, I began feeling warmer.



Back at the car!


We had a nice hike of Liberty and Flume.  The views were pretty, and the packed-out terrain on the way back (we met more hikers on the trail) made our hike easier for the way down.