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 Old Speck 
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Peak Bagger
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Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:39 pm
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Location: Maine
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 Old Speck
Planning on hiking Old Speck this Saturday, weather pending. I was curious if anyone has recently hiked it and knew the trail conditions. The kiddos finished their 48 and I was thinking that maybe finishing the 67 might be a fun summer project.[/b]


Tue Apr 19, 2011 5:30 am
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Sovereign Woodsman
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Location: Western Mass. Avatar: West Bond
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I did a quick search on TrailsNH.com, NewEnglandTrailConditions.com
and ViewsFromTheTop.com and found no recent trip reports on
Old Speck....However: I climbed Old Speck once in the first week
of May, and after visiting the summit I went down to Speck
Pond and spent the night there.
The conditions were ice, rotted snow, 3 feet of melting snow at
the summit, etc. The ice was so bad that I literally had to
hang on to the evergreen trees on both sides of the trail so
I wouldn't fall down (this would be on the approach route coming out
of Grafton Notch). So I would assume you'll be likely to encounter
at least some of those conditions. The slope on Old Speck that
descends to Grafton Notch isn't southern-facing, so the snow
will no doubt be lingering.

A picture I took at Speck Pond (taken in May, hopefully it gives
you an idea of how much snow was still on the ground).
Image

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Tue Apr 19, 2011 1:20 pm
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Flatfoot
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There is a report 10-15 miles down the ridge at Dream Lake from Friday:
http://trailsnh.com/find/Dream+Lake

Dream Lake is just above 2600'. I would expect the snow to get deeper the higher you climb.


Tue Apr 19, 2011 6:40 pm
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Peak Bagger
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I figured we'd be up for plenty of snow. Curious as to how solid it is. Any suggestions of a Maine 4k that might be a better choice?


Tue Apr 19, 2011 9:21 pm
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Hiking Forums Are My Crack
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Location: Exeter, NH
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This is from Saddleback and the Horn last April 18th.

Image

There was still a lot of snow then too (we needed snowshoes) and that was an early spring. The hike up the ski trails and the ridge wasn't too bad though and the ski trails are usually solid. Easy steady going and something different than your typical trail hike. We did Abraham May 16th and the snow was 99% gone by then, the only problem would be if those back roads to many of the Maine 4ks arent open it adds significant time/mileage to many of the hikes.

If it's just NE67's your after and not necessarily in Maine Abraham in Vermont up the Battell trail is fairly easy trip even in late spring conditions and has great views from the top. I've done it three times and it seems to be an early melter. Did it April 27, 2009 and there was only snow/ice from around the trail junction with the LT to where it breaks above treeline. Don't know exactly what it'll be like this year but this picture is from that trip and there are some recent trip reports out there on that peak too.

Image


Tue Apr 19, 2011 10:11 pm
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Peak Bagger
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I was debating Saddleback via a ski trail, but Im not sure as to the rules that the ski area has regarding hiking. I took the kiddos snowboarding there three weeks ago and all I could think was (other than being great riding conditions) how doable of a hike it would be. We're not going to hit VT until around June or July. I was thinking about spending a few days out there and getting a few peaks done. Great pic by the way......


Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:34 am
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I don't think they mind the hikers. I didn't ask anyone but nobody said anything to us and of course there was this sign near the warming hut too.

Image

This was the route we took if you're interested and it helps you out at all. The way up (RED) is the way they reccomend to summer hikers, although I'm sure there's plenty of alternatives.

Image


Wed Apr 20, 2011 12:34 pm
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Peak Bagger
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VERY Helpful. Hopefully the weather will cooperate and we can get our first good hike of the year in. If not, then maybe next week.


Wed Apr 20, 2011 3:26 pm
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I Spend All My Time on This Forum
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Location: Newmarket, NH
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Randalls wrote:
I was debating Saddleback via a ski trail, but Im not sure as to the rules that the ski area has regarding hiking. I took the kiddos snowboarding there three weeks ago and all I could think was (other than being great riding conditions) how doable of a hike it would be. We're not going to hit VT until around June or July. I was thinking about spending a few days out there and getting a few peaks done. Great pic by the way......


I did Saddleback and the Horn last year, in mid-May, and we just stopped in at the ski area building to let them know we were hiking up their trails. They didn't have a problem with it, were very friendly, and even let us know the best trails to use. Pretty sure I went up the way Granite Guy showed above. The warming hut was open when we were there, which was a good thing, since it was raining.

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Thu Apr 21, 2011 11:55 am
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Sovereign Woodsman
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Good to see you're getting back! We may have to replace Bob with you. :P

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Thu Apr 21, 2011 6:46 pm
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Peak Bagger
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The kids pretty much live on the ice from September to April. Schedule is a tad bit more predictable. I wish we could do some winter hikes, we dont have ANY weekend days off.


Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:46 pm
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