February 1, 2015.
With the wicked cold temps and very windy conditions I went for a short local hike on North Pack Monadnock. According to my records this will be the tenth time on this little mountain. Odd thing is there has never been this kind of snow cover on it in all the times I have hiked here. Even that sunrise hike I did in February of 2012 the ground was bare.
Just an easy out and back heading to the summit and a trip over to the cliffs. It is still cold but in the middle of the day so once moving I am OK.
The skies are crystal clear blue with not a cloud to be seen. The winds are blowing but nothing like they would be up north. It is nice and quiet in these woods and the snow gives a whole different look to these all too familiar trails. It is not long before I reach the first clearing and the other local mountains make an appearance. Winn Mt across the valley and beyond that the cliff faced Joe English Hill.
The time goes by quickly and I only see three people while heading up. Just under an hour and I am breaking out of the trees to a sun drenched summit.
Over to the tree framed viewpoint of Monadnock and turning a shot of Pack Monadnock and those silly towers on top.
Over to the north ledges for views towards the Whites and I was hoping for some good pictures but it is too late in the day. The haze has already set in and I can just barely make out the ridges way off in the distance. This viewpoint is slowly filling in and some day will be completely blocked in. The consolation prize is Mt Kearsarge but I have to stretch the camera above my head to get above the trees.
For once the trails and summit have signs and it is nice to see the Friends of the Wapack taking care of this little gem.
Making my way over to the cliffs and I head to the ledges that mark the beginning (or end depending on how you look at it) of Carolyn's Trail. The opening on the ridge to the left of the summit is this spot that I am at now.
These views will never grow in and I take some pictures looking for local landmarks. The usual mountains are my reference and I can see the New Boston Tracking Station just to the right of Joe English Hill. To the right of that and closer is a building with a tall tower and a red barn. This takes me quite some time to locate as to where these two distinct buildings are. But perseverance wins over and I finally find it on Google Earth. They are located in Lyndeborough on Center Road. The tower building is the Center Church of Lyndeborough.
I was hoping to see a building in town as I can see North Pack from that spot. Now I have some reference spots for next time. Over to the cliffs and through the haze I can just barely see outlines of the Boston skyline.
Around the corner a view to the west towards Monadnock. And to the left of Monadnock are two peaks I have not been to yet, Little Monadnock and Gap Mt.
Time to head back and on the way down from one of the ledges the best shot I could get of Mt Washington today. I've been able to see it on the way up but it is just this faint white halo in the distance. This isn't the best I have gotten from here before but it is as good as it is going to get today.
Not the views I was hoping for today being so cold and crisp but definitely a great day in the woods.
Final numbers: 4.2 miles, 2 hours and 45 minutes.