Jeb and I decided to go to New Hampshire for labor day weekend in 2013. I had finally coming around to admitting that I liked camping which meant we could travel for a lot cheaper, and therefore we could travel a lot more. We camped at Moose Brook state park in New Hampshire and set out to hike Mt. Washington. Jeb had hiked it before as a kid, but for me this would be by far my most ambitious hike to attempt, with over 4,000 feet of gain.
We ended up starting the hike way too late. We were just to the concept of just how long a true mountain hike can take and thought starting at noon was fine… definitely not smart!
The pictures from earlier in the hike I am much more smiley and still happy lol. My smile seemed to fade throughout the day as I got more and more tired and frustrated that we were still not at the top…
When we stood at that parking lot (and throughout the hike) we couldn’t see the top of the mountain and yet what we could see always seemed to be pretty high up!
This was my first time really hiking with hiking poles, and by the end of the day my legs and my knees were very thankful that I had them!
I definitely enjoyed how beautiful this hike is. It was very foggy the higher we got up the mountain. You never could really tell exactly where you were headed or how far the summit actually was. This was probably a good thing for me! I think if I had been able to constantly see the summit I would have been really discouraged.
At this point in the hike it was still fairly warm but the closer we got to the top, the colder and windier it got. By the end we were wearing every layer we had brought!
The route we took up was Tuckerman Ravine and on the way down we decided to take a different route and come down Lion’s head.
Last smiling selfie of the day haha.
About to leave the sunny area and head into the fog…
When we got into this area it got really slow going. There isn’t really a trail. Instead you are just following from one cairn to the next by scrambling across rocks. Some areas were so foggy that you could barely even find the next cairn. At one point we saw a sign that said 0.6 miles to the summit. An hour late we saw another sign and I thought it had to say we were there or at least almost there. I almost cried when I say that it said 0.4 miles to the summit. We had only gone 0.2 miles in an hour!
When we got to the summit where there is a parking lot and cars and a building even, Jeb had to basically force me to go take a picture with the summit sign. I was so exhausted and the sign was a little bit higher up on another rock pile. I was not happy…. You can really tell just how exhausted we were in this picture.
The hike back down definitely was not any easier. We ended up hiking the last hour in the dark because we started too late. When we got up the next day I was more sore than I had ever been in my life! I didn’t think I would ever walk normal again lol.
This was our first state high point, and after this we were committed. We were determined to become serious state high pointers!
New Hampshire High Point Lessons Learned: “Life is always harder the closer you get to the summit” – Random Chinese fortune cookie, hiking poles are not optional when it comes to difficult hikes, start hikes earlier!