September 18, 2014

Mount Pemigewasset

As I mentioned in our previous outing to Lonesome Lake, Katy and I decided to start tackling the NH 52 With A View list and bring Toby along for the ride. This past weekend, we embarked on our first of hopefully many hiking trips on this list by climbing Mount Pemigewasset.

Mount Pemigewasset is a small peak at the southern end of Franconia Notch that looks like a little nub that you can see when driving by on Interstate 93. It's an appealing hike for a small outing because of its relative driving proximity, the moderate 3 mile round trip climb, and the open ledges at the top. I've mentioned it as an option several times in the past when we've been considering a small hiking trip, but we've always opted for another alternative instead. Katy tells me that it was because she always associates the word Pemigewasset with bears because of an article we once saw about a bear encounter in the Pemigewasset Wilderness.

We got up on Sunday morning with our usual routine, still not 100% committed to making the trip. After having breakfast and getting Toby up and ready, we decided to go for it and began to get organized. It was another perfect fall day that was just not to be passed up. We were all ready to go around mid morning and headed out the door. It took a few false starts to get going though, as I think Katy and I each had to go back into the house once or twice to get something (diaper bag? sweatshirt? I don't even remember). We finally were situated though and were off. We made a stop on the way up to feed ourselves and Toby lunch, before continuing on and arriving at the large parking area for the Flume Gorge Visitor Center around 1:00PM.

There was plenty of activity at the visitor center as we got organized for the hike. Toby was excited to go in the carrier once again and we started heading up the trail. NH 52 With A View hike #1 had begun! But wait, 100 yards in and another false start. I had forgotten to put my long sleeve shirt in the pack so we had to go back to the car to get it. We recovered and were quickly back on the trail. The trail to the summit is fairly straightforward, with moderate elevation gain and is well maintained. We passed by a number of groups on the way up, and I think just about all of them had something to say to Toby or about Toby. He has a way of making friends quickly that kid! We even stopped once on the way up to take him out of the pack, and let him hike on his own with some help. We arrived at the summit ledges in just over an hour and stopped for a bit to take in the views over the notch as advertised.

We headed back down the way we came with little trouble and then spent a few minutes at the visitor center before heading home. The hike was a success and a great time was had by all of us. Looking forward to the next one!


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