“Hike to Remember” 51 miles complete!
What a hike! We finished our “Hike to Remember” yesterday at 4:00 after a beautiful hike up over the top of Mount Monadnock to top off an amazing effort over four days. We started at Mount Sunapee and made our way to the Max Israel Shelter on the first day. Ben Cutler joined us for the first day and overnight and Mike Rosen and his wife Tamar joined us on the way up Sunapee and lunch overlooking Lake Solitude. The 14 or so miles took us ten long hours giving us plenty of time to think about what we could ditch to lighten our loads! Although we had to hike into the darkness with our headlamps on we were thankful to have not had that same hike in the morning.
Day 2 we woke up slowly and were all eager to get as much sleep as possible therefore a later start to the day then we wanted but we had some motivation waiting for is 5 miles down the trail and into Washington center. Our movie friends were on the town common to root us on and most importantly Mom was waiting with a much anticipated lunch. The Monadnock Sunapee Greenway does go through the quaint villages of Washington and Nelson providing the picture perfect backdrop for a Fall day in New England and convenient resupply points!
While lunch was ever so nice and relaxing we had to pick up and get a move on towards our goal of reaching Pitcher Mountain before dark. We ended up getting into a groove and made our way just past Pitcher to the south facing blueberry pastures. We had the perfect and taunting view of Mt Monadnock in the distance. It was just the right spot to take in all the stars but did leave us open to the cold wind. We hunkered down as the view overruled the cold.
Waking up on a cold morning of Day 3 and getting the coffee going was priority number one for this crew. We knew we had a long day ahead and another food resupply waiting in Nelson. Okay, so what if we had two resupplies and we were out there only four days…it made for lighter loads and fuller bellies! It was a day of many different eco-systems and a day spent mostly on the cattle paths of yesteryear. Beautiful stonewalls from over a hundred years ago lined the trail in many areas. I couldn’t help but think about soldiers that hiked the same path to head south to fight in the Civil War or even the Redcoats prior to them. Anyway which way, the terrain was gentler and gave us the ability to cover a lot of ground. With our sights set on Day 4 we pushed over 15 miles on Day 3 to get to another shelter which was the 6.8 mile mark to the summit of Mt Monadnock. We ditched the shelter as we preferred the water view from our hammocks.
Day 4 we woke up early to the fog rising off the pond much to the delight of my camera. One of those scenes you try and figure out all the manual options on your camera looking for the one defining shot. I may have missed out on the perfect fog shot but managed a really cool cloud reflection photo. For many more trip photos go here.
We had a nice approach to Mount Monadnock up the Dublin Trail which was a first for me as I have always gone up the Pumpelly Trail or the front side trails. This was the pay off for all the miles we put on and a welcome view of the summit was near. We went from only seeing a few people on the trail over the four days to full on holiday weekend bonanaza of hikers going up and down the mountain. Giving you a feel why people say it’s the most hiked mountain in the world due to it’s accessibility. From scout trips to ill prepared families they kept on coming and all with the idea of enjoying a beautiful Fall day in New England. We we were treated with a perfect view of Boston just under 100 miles away although clear enough to see the cityscape defined by the Hancock and Prudential towers.
We can’t thank all those that help to support us in anyway from gear to donation to kind words of encouragement. You all have inspired us to push to create a further awareness of early onset of Alzheimer’s and to raise money for a the Skip Curtis Fund at Boston University Alzheimer’s Research Center.
A special thanks to the following companies that were incredibly generous in their support of our cause: Oakley, LL Bean, LuluLemon, North Face, Steripen, Patagonia, First Ascent and Kayland hiking boots! .