Thursday, July 28, 2016

Garfield. July 26, 2016

Mt. Garfield
Mt. Garfield Trail, Garfield Ridge Trail
10 miles
3,000 feet of elevation gain

I had summer camp from morning to noon today, so we had to start our hike in the afternoon.  It was relatively hot because it was the middle of the day, but it was reasonable and comfortable enough.  There were many cars already parked in the parking lot, even though it was Tuesday.

I recently deleted an app off of my phone, and I am glad I did!  I have a lot more picture storage now.  Having so much available space is really convenient.

The hike started with some wooden steps...

Max, our Border Terrier, lay in every water source he could.  He would just lie down and start drinking the water around him.

Bog bridges...

There were many water crossings, and Max was grateful to sit in them.

Coming up...

Max water lounging!

The leaves above the trail were light green and yellow because of the sun shining through them.

We took a quick water break on the large flat rock that felt like the halfway point.

"Tree fuzz"

Max looking strong (and tiny)...

We reached the 4.8 mile mark -- an intersection crossing paths with the Appalachian Trail.

Soon there!

I love the summit of Mt. Garfield.  The combination of the large rocks to climb over, the amazing views, the silhouettes of other hikers, and the minimal scrub makes the top perfect.

It was cloudy, but not so much so that the views were hidden.

I got a picture of myself with the views behind me.

The structure foundation provides a great place to sit.  You can also sit on the edge of the remains and look at the scenery.

A classic Hershey's bar with magnificent views surrounding it...

Sage holding Max!  I asked her to pose this way for a picture...her arms were getting tired, so I had to make it quick. 

More views...

Coming back down...

Close up of a leaf...

...and a stone.

Coming back over the water crossings...

Max still enjoyed bathing himself in water...even on the way down.


We saw the road!  In this picture it looks rather blue and bright...almost like ice.

Great hike!  Look what we saw while driving back...

Tiny bear cubs!

We didn't see the mama bear, so I assumed she must have crossed before her babies did.

I am going on vacation soon, so I will not be able to post another trip report for another two weeks.  See you in mid-August!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

AMC Alpine Zone Trail Maintenance Training--July 17, 2016

AMC Alpine Zone Trail Maintenance Training

We recently adopted the Alpine Garden Trail through the Appalachian Mountain Club.  Today we went with George Brown and a couple of other men to do some cairn building and scree wall formation for practice -- we needed to learn certain skills in order to be trail adopters.

We met George Brown at the Camp Dodge campground, and then we drove up Mt. Washington's Auto Road.  When we got to the  trail, he taught us the skills we needed.  As well as help with cairns and scree walls, he told us when and how to clip vegetation sticking into the trail.  The information was all extremely valuable.

We started off with cairn building.  The weather was perfect, and there wasn't a single dark cloud in the sky.  We started with the base of the cairn and worked our way up.

Wilson, George Brown's dog, was resting.  Maybe he was secretly critiquing our work...

Wilson kept us company.

When we finished the cairn, we needed to find a white rock to go on top.  The purpose of this rock is to stand out and to be easy to spot.  This is so hikers have a lower risk of getting lost.

It often sprinkled a bit and then cleared up.  The ends of my hair were often damp because of this.  Near the end of the day, it rained harder and we had to come down. 

Beautiful rare alpine flowers!  We rock-hopped in order to not step on them.  Sometimes we would see tourists go off the path, though.  When this happened, one of us would remind them of the rule to stay on the trail.

If you are wondering why Sage is standing on the cairn, the reason is we had to make sure it was steady; George Brown told us to test the cairn with our weight.  Sure enough, it stayed standing and was durable.

We found our white rock...

Camp Dodge:

Thank you, George Brown, for teaching us the skills we needed!  We became official certified maintainers of the Alpine Garden Trail today.