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 Mont Hereford, Québec- 7/31/2016 
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Sovereign Woodsman
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 Mont Hereford, Québec- 7/31/2016
The other day, I looked at my hiking log and noticed that I had one more mountain to go until I had hiked 300 different mountains. I quickly decided that the next day, the 31st, I was going to hike that 300th mountain. Then, I got a more creative idea- have my 300th different mountain be one in Canada 8) ! Most major mountains in Quebec are out of daytrip range for most of us (myself included), but after some snooping around online, I found 2,851 ft. Mont Hereford, about 7-8 miles north of the border, across from Canaan, VT. Another reason I went there was because it was forecasted to be partly sunny, dry, and warm, which wasn't supposed to be the case for most of NH. When I looked up the driving mileage, I was shocked at how close it was- a little over 175 miles of driving each way. Ended up cleaning and ArmorAll-ing the hell out my car, hit the sack, got up at 6 AM, then hit the road around 6:20 AM.

For most of the NH portion of the drive, it was very overcast with rain, which lessened the further north I drove. By the time I got to West Stewartstown, the sun was starting to come out :D ! Eventually, my turn off route 3 for the 1/2 mile drive through Beecher Falls, Vermont to get to the border station came. Took some deep breaths, then pulled up to the inspection booth in East Hereford, QC. Not gonna lie, I was expecting to have another "interesting" experience after my last one almost 6 months ago (when I dayhiked Sommet Rond), but the CBSA guard asked maybe 4 or 5 questions, ran my passport card, and waved me through. The whole process barely took a minute 8) . Soon, English turned to French, miles turned to kilometers, and I was on my merry way on QC route 253.

The QC portion of the drive, aside from delays due to a mountain bike race up the same mountain I hiked that day, was really nice. I just like driving through the Eastern Townships in general. It's sparsely populated and developed for the most part, and you drive through small villages and by rolling hills and mountains. Combined with the fact that everything is in French and metric, it feels like you're driving in a foreign country (which, technically, you are).

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First French signs

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Driving to the trailhead on Chemin de Coaticook

Around 9:45 or so, I rolled into the trailhead for the Neil Tillotson Trail (named for the man who invented latex gloves, Neil Tillotson, who was born in East Hereford and lived in Dixville Notch), my route up Mt. Hereford. Mr. Tillotson was also the first man in the USA to vote in the presidential primaries for 40 years until his death in 2001 at the age of 102. There were a few other cars in the lot, including one with Maine license plates, so I didn't feel alone, if you know what I mean :lol: . Hit the trail shortly after.

The Neil Tillotson Trail started out by slinking through some open, sunny woods, then came to a junction with a 0.5 km side trail to Donat Falls. Took that to the falls overlook, then took a herd path right to the falls proper. After a good rain, it's over 40 ft. high and looks spectacular, but alas, this was not the case. Still neat to look at though.

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Steep drop off at Donat Falls

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The falls (at low water levels)

The falls trail met back up with the NTT, then I stayed on that trail. It followed a series of brooks and river gorges for a good kilometer or so, crossed some woods roads, then intersected and followed a mountain bike trail for a short while. It then turned left off the trail and made a more moderate climb to another junction, this time with a 0.2 km spur path to a viewpoint. I took that and was pleasantly surprised at what I saw...

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Looking into NH and VT from the view spur

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The viewpoint itself

After that 0.4 km side trip, it was 2 km to the summit. The trail made a steeper climb, dropped down about 100 ft. in elevation, then made a steep and rocky climb to the open summit area. The trail didn't officially touch the summit, but I reached it by a 0.1 km side path (sign: "Sommet"). Eventually, I reached the 2,851 ft. top, which was marked with a memorial plaque for Mr. Tillotson.

The summit was open, but there was a cell tower and auto road on the top, which one can use to drive to the summit. (The latter may have been closed due to the mountain bike race.) The views were Monadnock-like since Mt. Hereford is the highest point for miles, and therefore there isn't much else close by for mountains in general, but if you look out, there are some neat views to be had. Oh yea, and I found some poutine scraps someone left on the top. Vive la Québec :lol: .

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Neil Tillotson plaque

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Mont Mégantic

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Possibly Bunnell Mountain?

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Lake Francis

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Mont Orford

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Powerline swath and village to the north

After about 15-20 min. or so, I headed back down, and besides dodging mountain bikers, I made good time back to the trailhead. Took my closing clip, packed up the car, and headed back to the US border station, taking some pics of road signs en route. Crossing back into the US was almost as easy as getting into Canada- the officer (who was actually really nice) asked me a few questions, took a quick peek in my trunk and back seat, ran my passport card, asked me how the hike went, and sent me on my merry way.

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A particularly nice part of Chemin de Coaticook

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90 km/h speed limit sign

Certainly better hikes out there, but I personally liked this one. It was nice, but the drive and experience combined with the hike made it a really cool adventure. Not in a hurry to go back, but this was certainly one of the more unique daytrips I've done. Roundtrip distance was 7.6 miles with around 1,700 ft. of elevation gain, and it took about 3-3.5 hours (wasn't keeping track since I forgot my watch).

Here's the video recap: https://youtu.be/P_-qMq92yG4

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NH4K: 48/48 (Completed 10/4/2014)
NE67: 67/67 (Completed 7/25/2016)
NE115: 74/115
NEFF: 31/50
NEHH: 75/100


Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:45 pm
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 Re: Mont Hereford, Québec- 7/31/2016
So, no NEHH or NE111 or even NHHH. It's the Quebec...How ever many. 8)

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Tue Aug 02, 2016 7:23 am
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