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 Hedgehog Mountain Albany, NH 7-24-16 
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 Hedgehog Mountain Albany, NH 7-24-16
We finally hiked Hedgehog Mountain. We have been putting it off because we had heard it was a busy mountain on the weekends. We can say it wasn’t busy on Sunday. We hardly saw another sole and we had all 3 viewpoints to ourselves as we arrived at them.
We got to the Downes Brook Trailhead about 7:40AM hoping to get a head start on the crowd, there were only 2 other cars, we could have slept in a little longer. :roll: The hike starts out great on the old railroad bed. We did miss the right turn after 0.2 miles. We saw the sign said east loop and though it was the east side of the UNH Loop, we wanted to do the loop clockwise, so we went straight. We didn’t go that far before we realized our mistake and knew we were on the X-country ski trail. :shock:
We corrected ourselves and headed up the 0.6 miles to the proper loop junction. After we passed the West Loop for the ski trail, the UNH Trail became a steady incline. Nothing too bad though, as a matter of fact, the whole loop trail wasn’t too bad. If you are traveling with a dog though, we definitely recommend extra water until we get some rain. Most of the steams are bone dry.
The ledges were nice and dry and the views were great. We took a break for a bit just taking all the views in. As we were getting ready to leave we saw the summit of Hedgehog looming in front of us. As we headed towards the woods, the trail started going down and away from the summit. At one point we questioned if we missed a turn again. It felt more like we were in a dry steam bed. Finally we saw a faint faded blaze and we knew we were going the right way. From the ledges to the summit, the blazing is old and faded. As soon as we hit the summit the blazing appeared to be recently repainted, so we figured they must be working on the rest of the trail. We have nothing but respect for the people who do trail maintenance. :)
Once we started up the cone of the summit, the trail became a fun scramble in sections. When we got to the summit, we saw the ‘X’ painted on it, we were hoping there were going to be some views and of course there were a little further down along the trail. We stopped there for a while and had a snack before heading down. That’s when we noticed all the blueberry bushes, then we figured it is probably crowded when they are in season. There were a couple small blue ones, but they are not ready just yet.
It wasn’t long before we hit Allen’s Ledge. We worked our way down to the lower section and was very impressed with the views from there. It maybe because we just hiked Potash a month ago and the views from both summits are almost the same, but these views looked nicer, just our opinion of course. We were able to zoom in on Chocorua and see people on the summit.
All and all it was a great day to be out on the trails. It’s seems as though there isn’t enough time this summer for us to do all that we want to, then again there never is.
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