Washington, Madison, Eisenhower, Pierce – Trip Report

Date: 07/26/14

Time: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM 

Trails: Jewel Trail, Gulfside trail. Crawford Path, Mizpah Cutoff, Crawford path, Clinton Rd road walk. 

Miles: 17.5 

Weather: Warm and partly cloudy. 

Trail log: Once again Abby and I had big plans of getting up north to catch a sunrise. The original plan was to get up there and hike Jackson for the sunrise and make way to Pierce before heading back down to the notch to get a campsite. Once I drove up to the area though my eyes were getting pretty heavy and I had to admit that I just did not have it in me that night. Accepting defeat we just pulled up and took a quick nap till sunrise. 

When we got up we went to the store and got some coffee. I suggested that the day was open now because we were not already on the ridge line. Abby said

” What about Washington?”

Now Abby hates the presidentials so when she said this I was taken back but went instantly into planning mode.

“Sure we can go right down the road and take the Jewel trail tag Washington go past the Lake of the Clouds hut and get Monroe too. We can then loop it and come down Ammonoosuc Ravine trail.” 

We made our way and were in the parking lot with quite a few others with the same idea. There was a ranger tent set up and the ranger thought I was going to leave Pattons early morning nature contribution on the ground next to his tent as he asked me if I was going to pick it up at the same moment I was pulling out some plastic bags. It was humorous. He then went on to tell me of a woman who had a dog with a similar situation and she left it on the ground saying, 

“What? It’s outside after all.” 

I guess everyone has a different idea of what is acceptable with their dog. I went on to pick up his duty and put it in the trash…. Lets start hiking.

           We started hiking around 8:15. The trail was great and the people we were playing leap frog with on the trail with were quite nice. There were lots of great sots along the Jewel trail to stop and take in some views. The Sun was shining trough the clouds giving it a great look on the landscape. 

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The northern Presidentials from the Gulfside trail.

We took our time taking in the many views while resting our legs from the onslaught of steep rocky grades.  We made it to the top around 12:30. It was packed but we got in line and got a great summit picture with the crew. It only took about 20 minutes. We made some lunch of mashed potatoes and soup. The hustle bustle of the mountain proved a bit too much and we moved on to the Lake of the Clouds hut. 

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Team bunkah representing on Washington.

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“Please sir can I have some more?”

Once off of the top of Washington the crowds thinned out though there were still many folks on the trail to the hut. Abby and I made a short rest at the lake of the clouds before we made for the summit of Monroe. It was a lovely day and a lovely scene on the lake. 

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Sun bathing on the mountain tops.

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Looking at whats ahead; Monroe.

Away we went to the summit. it is only .3 miles and takes no time at all. With the fresh rest we made it no problem. it was about 4:00 when we got up there. We met up with some folks up top and when we tried to rest on the top Patton got restless and started whining. It was pretty funny and everyone had a good time with him while he was urging us to move on. 

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“Daddy lets keep going!”

“Why don’t we keep going?” 

I asked Abby not wanting to stop. She looked at me and I pointed ahead down the range and the mountains stood out almost telling you to move on. Abby looked at me as she usually does when I start planning; concerned. Knowing that the rain was coming in for Sunday it seemed pretty wise to try and get in as much as we could today. We were tired and on little sleep, but we decided to go on anyways. Onward to Eisenhower! 

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Change of plans… Onward!

By this time there was next to no on on the trails. We had a great evening of sites along the ridge and the wind was blowing around a warm air in the most refreshing way. It was some of the best weather I have ever experienced on this ridge. Over Franklin and along to Eisenhower. We rested up on the summit and had another great round of views. 

“Pierce?” I asked

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 On we went along the ridge as the sun was setting in the sky and it was still very warm. We made it to Pierce and in great time. We were tired. We wanted to get to Jackson but as the sun was setting when we moved towards Mizpah hut we just had to admit that we were too tired. Not only that but we also had a very long road walk ahead of us. We had to end the hike here. Not a big deal at all. Great day indeed. We walked out by head light. Once at the bottom I figured I would try and ask for an sos on the 4000 footer climbing and hiking facebook page. My good friend Jason got a hold of me and picked us up shortly after the Edmonds path parking lot. Thank goodness. I love our community. Thank you again Jason!  It was about 11 when we got back to the car. What a day. We tried to get home but I was exhausted. We stopped at McDonalds had a burger and passed out in the truck. I am not proud to admit that…:) We got home at 6 in the morning and took another nap. We were so tired. All day we got 3 peaks off of Abby and Patton’s lists. Abby is at 27 and Patton has 32. Great hike for the crew to say the least. Abby said she no longer hates the presidentials. I smiled at her in victory. Time for a complete traverse…

Washington track

GPS track of the hike

Check out our pictures Here

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