May 9, 2015.
For the second hike of today I had one trail left on the Squam Mountains and I have not been back to this area in a year and a half. Doublehead Trail is a short hike that starts at the junction with Thompson Road and Route 113. The actual trailhead starts up off of Thompson Road but the WMG describes the hike from Route 113 with Thompson Road counting as part of the mileage.
The drive over from Waternomee Falls takes a little over an hour and just before 9:30 I am off heading up the old dirt road.
The day is still sunny and the temps are not that hot as the air is still a little crisp. This is the perfect hiking weather plus the lack of snow, unlike last week's fiasco, is a bonus. About half way up while I am admiring all the old stone walls in the area I see something unusual off to my right where a stone wall leads down to the road. Up in the woods a hundred feet or so are some gravestones and turns out it is Stephen King's Pet Semetary.
Funny thing is there are no houses around this area. I passed the last one down towards the beginning of Thompson Road. A few minutes later and I reach the actual trailhead and there is a car parked there plus on the other side of the road a small mobile home. Not sure if the two are related or if someone is hiking the ridge from here as Morgan and Percival Trails are closed due to the mud season. Doublehead Trail starts out fairly mild and passes some stone walls along the way.
A little ways up and I see the first Bellwort of the season. I had seen some while hiking up to Waternomee Falls earlier this morning but they were not quite in bloom.
About ten minutes later the trail starts it's climb up and soon I reach another stone wall where the trees are painted red marking a boundary line. A large maple tree along side the trail and brook has a bad case of fungus.
Along a short flat section the trail goes through a blowdown patch from a year or so ago. It then bypasses the old trail with a short steep relocation where the remains of a yellow blaze is still visible.
The trail steepens through here and on the right it looks like there might be an opening for some views but after trying to push my way up and through it is false hope. Up the trail another hundred feet and this time the opening turns out to be an open ledge that the trail traverses over.
The view is to the south and unfortunately they are hazy so the distance peaks are hard to discern. To the left are the Ossipees and moving clockwise Red Hill is next. Squam Lake is just below me and the Rattlesnakes in front of that. Coming around and the long ridge that makes up Mt Webster and then the cliffs of Mt Morgan.
The black flies are just starting up for the season as they are not biting yet but instead are just as annoying as they buzz around the face. The trail ducks back into the woods and climbs up over a ledge outcropping. A quick five minutes later and this trail is done as I reach the junction with Crawford Ridgepole Trail.
Being greedy I head up Crawford Ridgepole Trail to East Doublehead for some very obscure views that I remembered. Across the way is Dickey and Welch over by Waterville Valley. To the right is the summit of Tecumseh, my first four thousand footer, home to Waterville Valley Ski Area and some of the still snow covered ski trails.
I continue heading up the trail but when I reach an opening and see where the next spot for views is I turn back as I still have other agenda for the day. So down I go passing the car at the trailhead. I never saw anyone while I was out here, another NPD hike for me, and a little after 12:30 I am back heading off to the next destination for the day.
Final numbers: 5 miles, 3 hours and 10 minutes.
Redline Miles: 2.3, Total to Date: 762.1