Mahoosuc Traverse 12-17-06
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Author:  marchowes [ Mon Dec 18, 2006 1:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Mahoosuc Traverse 12-17-06

Date(s) Hiked: 12/17/06

Trails(s) Hiked: Goose Eye, AT, Old Speck Spur

Total Distance: 17mi

Difficulty: Treacherous, Very Hard.

Conditions: Varied wildly – cold windy clear early on, foggy but semi warm later

Special Required Equipment: Crampons, Stabilicers (traction)

Trip Report:

----Okay, I'll admit 95% of this hike was in Maine, but the first Mile or so was in NH so I figure its game :) Not to mention it was a pretty wild hike and is close enough to NH anyways :)

I do not recommend this hike at this time of year unless you have very good endurance, are very sure footed, and aren’t alone. This was a very long nearly 11 hour traverse covering some very rough terrain, unbroken trails, and.. the dreaded Mahoosuc notch. Mahoosuc Notch for those who don’t know is a mile long section in a deep cut notch with boulders from the size of cars to the size of a house which you must climb over and under. Interestingly enough the notch was not icy (but it was buried in 6-8 inches of virgin snow) The summits namely south of the notch were icy as hell and windy. This was a major traverse and was pretty wild at this time of year. I did it with Al (albee: VFTT) and his friend Rod. Both of them runners so they were kicking my butt Great hike I had a lot of fun and I would do it again even at this time of year.. but most people should be weary of such an idea as it really was pretty wild at places.

Oh yes and for those wondering Success Pond road was plowed.

Much bigger report and pictures from the traverse here: http://hoosactunnel.net/nonhoosac/ME/Mahoosuc061217

Author:  Pucknuts61 [ Mon Dec 18, 2006 2:35 pm ]
Post subject: 

Wow! Way to go Marc!

I've heard a lot about this stretch as being difficult before you add the snow.

Congrats on red-lining a trail like this in December!

Author:  marchowes [ Mon Dec 18, 2006 6:45 pm ]
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There were comments from my hiking partners that the 6-8 inches of snow may have made the notch easier...

First tis important to note that the snow was very sticky.. not slick at all. so jumping from rock to rock had a cushioning effect. The downside to the snow was it made "trap" IE areas of snow with nothing underneath them (gaps between rocks) so the true rock surface was disguised. We made it through in 1:30. From what I heard the average time for most hikers is 2:15. I don't feel we really rushed it so who knows. Lots of other places on this hike were icy as hell though! Not to mention the tiring nature of trail breaking in areas :)

Author:  New Hampshire [ Mon Dec 18, 2006 6:52 pm ]
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Great pics man....they have this neat kind of lavender effect to them! A big "thumbs up" to you for this one.


Author:  dougeh [ Tue Dec 19, 2006 7:33 am ]
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Marc, wicked awesome shots!
Thanks for the post - next year I'm headed to Maine to hike,
even if I have to start in NH.

Author:  MtnMagic [ Thu Dec 21, 2006 1:03 pm ]
Post subject: 

The Mahoosuc's are a tough hikein the 3 season's, let alone in the snow. Weary is an understatement! I don't believe I would be comfortable rock hopping the Notch with snow, and most definitely not with ice. Heck few would go there until the end of May. These is one of my favorite hikes of all time. Been thru the Notch 6 times. Love to camp at Old Speck Pond, it is just beautiful!

You didn't mention in your t.r. you also summited, North Peak, and South Peak (which is North of North Peak!) Great t.r. and pix on your hoosactunnel.net site!

Baldpate will wait patiently for your arrival next year, now with added trails.

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