Sunday, October 23, 2016

Lafayette and Lincoln Classic Loop -- 10/17/2016

Old Bridle Path, Greenleaf, Franconia Ridge, and Falling Waters
8.9 miles
3,900 feet of elevation gain

I was excited to do one of my favorite loops again.  The last time we did this hike was about a year ago when there was ice on the trail.

We were going up Mt. Lafayette first, so we turned left here.

A shocking array of orange and yellow.

Max came with us!  He is a little trooper.

We were almost up to the first Agony when we arrived at the first viewpoint.  Today, unfortunately, it was mostly made up of cloud.

Some autumn leaved trees could be seen down below, though.

Continuing up in a misty world...

The rocks were wet and slippery at times.

No trampling the alpine zone!

Greenleaf Hut appears like a ghostly shadow...yes, I might be getting into Halloween mode.

The hut crew was cleaning up the hut so it could be closed for the season, but they let us in to quickly refill our water bottles.  They are fully closed now.

Max in the fog...

After we refilled our water bottles, we went on to Mt. Lafayette.

The thick, moist air settled on the trees like a chilly covering.

We went above tree-line.  By now, we had only our T-shirts on and were not cold due to constant movement.

The sun was trying to pierce through the blanket of clouds with sharp rays of sunlight.

We arrived!

We hunkered down in this rock structure and layered up.

After a quick break, we moved on to Mt. Lincoln.  The cloud cover shifted sometimes while we were hiking along the ridge to reveal occasional views.

It was refreshing to see the clouds drift away a little to reveal glimpses of stunning scenery.


We came to Little Haystack after going over Lincoln.

Sage hugging Max:

We could see amazing views by now; the clouds had cleared up.  I was happy for all the people we saw coming up Little Haystack because they were going to have spectacular sights of deep blues, dark purples, grays, oranges, reds, and whites.

Coming down Falling Waters--the reason for its name should be apparent.  Beautiful!

We came down to a warm parking lot.  Even though it had been foggy and wet coming up (and cold up top!), it cleared coming across the ridge and on our way down; it had been a good day.