I rendezvoused with 3 old college buddies for a reunion hike on snowy Moosilauke on Saturday morning. It had snowed a few inches at my buddy’s house on Stinson Lake in Rumney NH (elev 1500’) on Friday night but had largely turned to patches of slush by Saturday morning. We lost power early Friday evening but the fantastic scallop and pasta dinner was cooked nonetheless with ease on top of the woodstove. Power returned around 4:30am. Sat AM we drove up to the Ravine Lodge at Moosilauke to a winter wonderland. So great to see the snow on the ground and trees – winter is finally approaching and the world that I love it is now coming alive. We were a bit concerned about the windy conditions, but the hike up the Gorge Brook Trail was generally calm, and we were only slightly slowed down by the snow and icy conditions on the trail. As we came out of the trees, the trail became quite icy for a period, but as we approached the summit above treeline, it was surprisingly calm as we were on the leeside approach. At the top (4800’), however, it was a fierce wind out of the northwest – we guesstimated about 20 degrees F and 30-40 knot breeze – water bottles on side of pack were freezing – quite bitter. We made our way down the windward side (brutal) and into the trees – on down the Carriage Rd where the snow had drifted into mini 8” drifts and to the Snapper Trail and back to the Ravine Lodge which was closing up for the season. A perfect segue-way into winter. It could only have been better with about another foot of snow and rock skis.
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