This weekend I broke from the scheduled trainings to go hiking and camping at Mt. Moosilauke with my brother for his bachelor party.
The weekend started on Saturday morning with a 2 hour drive to northern NH. There was some talk of doing a bike ride but the weather forecast didn’t look great so I scrapped that plan. On the drive up I found myself trying to figure out the difficulty of a bike ride. The Ravine Lodge at Mt. Moosilauke sits at 2,500 feet so the drive up was a good climb. I wish I could have biked up it while at the same time glad we decided not too ride!
I had never been to Mt. Moosilauke so I didn’t know what to expect. I soon figure out that our cabin was not close to the parking area – I would come to find out it was around 1/2 mile, almost all uphill. This wouldn’t be that big a deal except that I hadn’t packed expecting this. So, I had to make two trips to get all my gear to the cabin.
Overall the uphill hike was worthwhile. It was a large one room log cabin with a deck around 2 sides with the longer side looking up onto the mountains. Inside there was a small kitchen area, large rustic dining table, bunk beds and an old cast iron cooking stove that was also the heating source.
There was no electricity and while there was a sink and faucet, the water didn’t seem to work. The “facilities” were about 50 yards away down an embankment and across two seasonal runoff streams. Thankfully I didn’t have to make many trips there. The one cool thing about it was the view. While you were sitting doing your business and if you left the door open there was a nice view of the mountains!
The climb up Mt. Moosilauke was good but challenging. The trail we took up was 3.6 mils to an elevation of 4,800 feet which is about 2,300 feet from the cabin which by my calculation is about an 8.2% grade, pretty steep! We a lot of Moose droppings on the way up which surprised me because the area we saw them was very densely wooded with a good amount of snow still on the ground. It seemed like it would be difficult for an animal the size of a moose to maneuver.
It took us about 2 hours to get to the summit and since we didn’t leave until around 2:30, that only left about 2 hours to get down to the base for the 6:30 dinner at the lodge.
We took a different route down which was also 3.6 miles. However, this route was on the northern side of the mountain so there was a significant amount of snow for about half of the trail down. It had been packed down over the winter but softened by the warmer days so it formed kind of a ridge along the trail making it difficult to maneuver.
We did make it to dinner on time and had a great meal. Despite the sore legs that we all had the next day, the rest of the weekend was good and dragging all of our gear down the hill was obviously much easier than the trip up the day before.
I had originally intended on riding that afternoon after getting home from my son’s lacrosse game, but my sore legs were telling me otherwise. I’ll get back on track this week with my more “traditional” training program.