Sunday, October 28, 2012
Chris and I headed up to Hancock Campground on Saturday afternoon. It was shockingly warm for this time of year (close to 70 degrees when we set up our campsite). We saw a number of signs warning hikers about Hurricane Sandy, but they were targeting travelers who would be out until Monday when the weather is supposed to get bad. We watched the Penn State game at the Woodstock Inn and made a good campfire before crashing pretty early. It got down to the high 40's over night but we were both pretty comfortable.
On Sunday we dealt with borderline hurricane conditions (light clouds and a mild breeze). The climb was consistent, but never too steep. We were on the Starr King Trail for the entire hike. All of the downed leaves made parts of the trail a bit slippery but for the most part it was a comfortable walk in the woods. With the trees pretty much bare at this point, visibility and views were improved over mid-summer conditions.
The trail took us over Starr King Mountain (~3,900') which had an outlook toward Mt. Washington and the presidential range. Near the Starr King summit there was a fireplace and chimney, the only remnants of an old cabin, standing in a clearing. It was pretty strange to see near the top of a mountain in the middle of the woods. From there it was about a mile to the summit of Waumbek. The summit was heavily wooded with only limited views to the north. The ridge walk between Starr King and Waumbek was mild and well maintained although the wind had picked up. We got up and down in 4 hrs 30 mins well ahead of book time.
Chris bagged his first 4K and handled it really well.
Pictures below. Left the SLR at home so only some grainy cell phone pictures this time: