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 Trip Report: Mt. Hale 11-12-06 
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Leg Burner
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Joined: Tue Oct 03, 2006 7:59 pm
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Location: Central Massachusetts
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 Trip Report: Mt. Hale 11-12-06
Heading up to the Whites this morning, the weather was again a concern, but as with my previous trip a few weeks earlier, no weather site can take the place of actually seeing what the weather turns out to be that day. I was ready for rain, which the weather.com was predicting all day for the closest town of Twin Mountain, and while there was rain and mist on the way up from Massachusetts, it cleared up on 93 around the Lakes Region with the occasional glimpse of blue sky through the cloud cover.

I arrived at Zealand Road about 45 minutes early (still learning how much time it takes to get to various locations from my house) but the timing turned out to be perfect when about a quarter of a mile up the road I came across 10-15 wild turkeys crossing the road. They scooted off into the woods to the side of the road as I went by on my way to the trailhead.

Rick, Andy and Mt. Magic showed up around 8:30. We put on our gear and headed up the Hale Brook Trail around 8:45. For the first 3/4 ths of a mile, the trail heads through a birch forest ascending at an easy pace. The trail eventually follows a small ravine as it approaches Hale Brook.

After crossing Hale Brook for the first time, the trail continued to parallel Hale Brook, heading up the steepest part of the trail for the next quarter mile. It then crossed back over a side branch of the brook and proceeded at an easier pace through a section of switchbacks. We noticed the first small patches of snow on the hike here, though with the exception of one short 10 foot stretch near the summit, there was none on the path.

The switchbacks ended about the point where the forest changed from birch to conifers and the grade returned to a pace similar to the beginning of the trail all the way up to the summit. By the time we reached the summit, clouds had come in, and while there were not any views, it still was not raining. We ate an early lunch by the rock cairn then proceeded to head back down the trail as we had started to get cool on the open summit exposed to the wind.

The trip back down went fast and we were back down at the trailhead by 1:15 and still no rain. Overall, the footing on the path was good, with only a few spots such as the stream crossings that required a little extra attention.

I’d personally like to thank everyone on the trip for helping me bag my first 4000 peak. I still have a lot of work to do to get into shape and it really showed on the way up. While the pace at the beginning of the hike was good, I found myself out of breath by the first stream crossing and had to stop time after time on the way up. The encouragement to keep moving even when I didn’t want to worked some of the time. And at two hours and 45 minutes on the way up, we were only half an hour over book time. On the way down we did make good time though… only 1 hour and 15 minutes

Pictures at:
http://s111.photobucket.com/albums/n129/chet_tidwell/Mount%20Hale/


Sun Nov 12, 2006 10:04 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 8:13 pm
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Hey Chet,

Great report and big congrats on your first 4K!

only 47 more trip reports to go and I hope you enjoy them all. There are a few others without views but hopefully you find the hike can be better than the summits anyway.
Try not to worry about book times too much...however long it takes is your book time and make sure you enjoy the views along the way.

Way to go,
Bill

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Sun Nov 12, 2006 10:08 pm
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Location: Lancaster, NH Avatar: On the trail again
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I don't care about book time as much as I care that you can make it to the top. That you did well! Congrats on your first 4k and your great trip report. Great pix too!

So the reader knows, Rick is aka Ollerman, the speed hiker.
:D

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Mon Nov 13, 2006 5:08 am
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Nice work Chet, and I agree with Bill and Magic, book time means nothing. Conratulations on your first, we'll look forward to more as you bag them!

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Mon Nov 13, 2006 9:38 am
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