Home Forums Outside Places SU 05-26 Little Bigelow Lean-to 1,801′ – hike w/o backpack 5.4 x 2 mi – first sn

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    Udar Gromov

    Today – SU 05-26 Little Bigelow Lean-to 1,801′ – hike w/o backpack 5.4 x 2 mi – first snow


    Wake at 7 AM and by 8:30 I am walking without any baggage.  Just like on a reconnaissance mission.  With me just one apple, some trail mix, walking stick.  The idea was that snow at some point will be so dense that I would have to turn back and attempt to hitch hike around the mountains.  I did not eve take the notebook.  Not even a camera.  Not a bug-spray, no sunscreen.  Only iPhone.

    09:15 remove extra layers of clothes and hide them to pick up later, on the way back

    10:04 spotted first patches of snow

    Stop at every clearing to capture increasingly beautiful views.  I can see Flagstaff Lake of yesterday and Bigelow mountain of tomorrow.  Also, Sugarloaf Mountain is in clear view across the valley with its still un-melted show trails.

    10:20 snow no longer can be avoided.  I need to step on it and it sometimes gives and I am deep in snow

    10:25 -10:41 rest stop + put on plastic bags on both feet over socks

    11:01 there is cell signal.  Weather forecast – all remaining 3 days without rain – good.

    12:30 walk on evergreen that fallen along the trail.  You can’t go around here.  You must walk on the fallen trees.  The whole trail is blocked by many fallen trees and debris from windy winter.  Here that did not have a chance to clear the trail yet.

    13 PM – I’ve reached the very bottom – Stafford Notch Campsite.  I can here people’s voices, but I can’t see them.  It appears they are just stared their climb onto the Bigelow.

    13:33 I’ve caught up with a group of 4 people.  They did not know anything about snow but were confident to be able to get to the top.

    Now I am starting to go back.  How many hours it took me to get here? 5 hours.   If I move at the same speed, I will be back at the camp around 6:30 PM.  Let me start moving then.

    14:30 I am back at the evergreens.  My speed is accelerating

    14:52 I am back at the clearing where I was around 11 AM today.  Several communications with Lira.

    15:24 Temperature warmed up to +18°C

    16:00 I was here already at 10:30. Two more hours left to go.

    16:48 I found my clothes that I left behind around 9 AM

    17:15 I came back to the camp.  Bath with a cold water.  Fire. Got a burn on few left-hand fingers even through the glove. Today I am having spicy beans from Patagonia Provisions – nothing special, but that is good out here.  Please note that Patagonia Provisions meal require you to cook in the pot unlike others where you just pour  hot water into the packet itself, seal and wait.

    Summary at the end of the day – kind of a failure.  The path was wide open.  Instead I hike 5 miles one way al the way to base of Bigelow mountains, talked to a group of people who did not know about any snow themselves and turned back without a definitive answer.

    20:44 Plan for tomorrow – hike 10 miles to Horns Pond shelter.  From there, there is another 5 miles to the auto road.  Or maybe I should go back down and hitchhike my way to the car.


    Day-by-Day Reference:
    TH 05-23 Boston – drive 232 mi to AT on 4/27, Maine – bike 29.5 mi – hike 0.7 mi
    FR 05-24 Pierce Pond Lean-to 1,167′ – hike 11 mi
    SA 05-25 West Carry Pond Lean-to 1,311′ – hike 8.5 mi
    SU 05-26 Little Bigelow Lean-to 1,801′ – hike w/o backpack 5.4 x 2 mi – first snow
    MO 05-27 Little Bigelow Lean-to – hike 11 mi through two 4,000′ peaks with heavy snow
    TU 05-28 Horns Pond Lean-to 3,151′ – hike 5.6 mi, drive 29.4 to bike, drive 251.5 mi

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