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 Eastern Belknap loop 11-29-13 
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Sovereign Woodsman
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Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:21 am
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Location: Lynn MA
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 Eastern Belknap loop 11-29-13
I aimed to "bang out" a multitude of belknap peaks in a nice loop on the eastern area of the range.

The Route was starting from the Mt. Major parking lot along the Brook trail to the N. Straightback Link to the quarry trail all the way over to Mt. Klem. Down to Mack and back to S. Straightback over anna And back to Mt. Major, then down back to the lot. Really, no single peak in the range is difficult to ascend comparatively to the whites. Distances and elevation gains are mild also. But they do add up.

The N. Straightback link is blazed in one of the most ridiculous colors; green. The only color worse i think could be grey. Its also not an oftenly used trail. Really, anything outside of Belknap and Mt. Major is not well used out here. All the leaves covering the ground add to this, and there isnt much of a trail corridor. Alot of times i had to look back to the last blaze to see where the trail could have come from.



Image

I saw a hunter coming down this trail from near the top of N. Straightback. I was glad i had my bright orange shirt on. Although he said he could hear me for a while and I didn't sound like a deer. I quickly put my orange bandana on and wish i had brought my microspikes if not for anything else, but to just dangle from my pack.

The rest of the trip honestly was a bit of up and down. Quarry trail wasn't hard to follow at all really. A bit Icy on the way down from W. Quarry. I Ignored the advice of this sign and took the normal way down. not too difficult. Plenty of trees to hold and plenty of area to the side to avoid all the major ice.

Image

Between Mack and Anna wasn't bad. One river crossing turned into a PITA since i had no traction and any rocks above water were covered in a bit of glaze. I walked a bit up river and found a log to cross to get some handholds to get myself some opposing force. My river crossings aren't pretty, but they get done... eventually. :oops:

I fixed the sign at S. Striaghtback. it had fallen over. I just opened up the middle of the cairn. Put it back on its base and hammered it back into the base with one of the ciarn rocks. Really it may fall down again perhaps soonish. It needs the bottom few rotted inches taken off or the post replaced altogether. I also suggest the mounting rods be longer to stick further into the post. That is if whoever maintains these signs reads this forum. :wink:

all in all this hike was great! felt mostly remote. Some ice. And it was cold! love bopping about in a thin baselayer not sweating!'' Also the Whole day felt like it was in perpetual sunset/sunrise.

It boils down to this.

N. Striaghtback


Image

E. Quarry

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NOT :x W. Quarry

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Rand

Image

Klem

Image

Mack

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Anna ( I think)

Image

Maybe this is anna (maybe its the cairn on on the trail?, man i need a gps for this crap)

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Cool Tree

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S. Striaghtback

Image

we all know major.

If anyone could tell me if i missed a summit by some trivial amount of feet please let me know.

other pics are here

https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/1180 ... 4157554337


Sun Dec 01, 2013 9:13 pm
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Sovereign Woodsman
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 Re: Eastern Belknap loop 11-29-13
thegibba wrote:
If anyone could tell me if i missed a summit by some trivial amount of feet please let me know.

I did Belknap about 8 years ago. It was the one with the look-out tower.
I never did the whole loop though...nice job!

Is this where you were?

<a href="http://s1243.photobucket.com/user/JoeR1956/media/Belknap%20Mountain%20Lookout/BelknapMnt9-27-05016.jpg.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i1243.photobucket.com/albums/gg548/JoeR1956/Belknap%20Mountain%20Lookout/BelknapMnt9-27-05016.jpg" border="0" alt="Sept 28 2005 photo BelknapMnt9-27-05016.jpg"></a>

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Sun Dec 01, 2013 10:13 pm
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I didn't do the western 4 peaks this time. Just those east of round pond. The whole loop wouldn't be out of the question starting in the dark and ending in the dark this time of year. I'd pick late spring or mid fall to do that.


Sun Dec 01, 2013 10:33 pm
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Looks like a very quiet and enjoyable day of hiking. Reminds me a lot of a loop around and over the Pawtuckaways. I've wanted to do more in the Belknaps for a while now and this and Grindboys reports have made me pretty certain my next bigger hike will be there, although ill probably wait for rifle season to end, which is only in a few days in most areas I believe. Nice to have a hike like that only an hour away from me too.


Mon Dec 02, 2013 8:56 am
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According to other reports I've read this trip was 11-12 miles and about 3500 feet of elevation gain. There are lots of ups and downs. More gain than on a buncha 4ks. I ended up jogging down where I could to make up for trail finding issues and wandering about looking for summits. I wanted to be near the straight backs by sunset just in case. Plenty of time left. But the jogging downhill with a full pack did a number on my knees. ow! They didn't hurt that night but I felt like I was 90 years old the next morning.


Mon Dec 02, 2013 11:25 am
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As far as I know those were the summits -- I found a sign that said Anna on the ground by that cairn in the first pic, but it didn't look at all uniform to the other summit signs, so who knows?


Mon Dec 02, 2013 10:23 pm
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I've read the cairn on w. Quarry is the summit not the sign. Bmthe cairn I found was like 20 yards off the trail. I dunno. The belknaps are nebulous in many ways.


Mon Dec 02, 2013 10:57 pm
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