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  1. #1

    Default Trip #70 NH & ME - Filling in the Gap, Goodbye NH, Hello 2000 miles

    Second week of September I will be returning to the lovely states of New Hampshire and Maine for a week of hiking.

    Pinkham Notch to Grafton Notch - 52.2 - Saturday evening thru Wednesday

    Nero in Bethel - Wednesday Night Motel if on schedule

    ME 4 Rangeley, ME to ME 27 Stratton, ME - 32.2 - Thursday thru Saturday

    Total of 84.4 Miles in 8 days.

    These expectations keep my mileage at or below what I maintained on Trip #69 for 2 weeks.
    It will be a tough trip terrain wise but will complete New Hampshire, and bite off another 47 miles of Maine.
    Putting me over 2000 miles complete, and hopefully align me for one final trip in 2021 to wrap it all up on Katahdin.
    Covid regulations and laws will be followed.
    30 days away...
    Trail Miles: 3,978.2 - AT Trips: 70
    AT Map 1: 2004.8
    AT Map 2: 265.0
    Sheltowee Trace Map: 59.0
    BMT Map: 57.7
    Pinhoti Trail Map: 0.0

  2. #2

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    Keep in mind it gets dark real early come mid September in these parts. If it's overcast, or your on the East side of the ridge or in thick forest, or all three, it gets dark really, really early. You should be settled in no later then 6 PM, 5 PM is better. 1 MPH will be the pace much of the time. The Whites were just a warm up for this up coming section. Going shelter to shelter is a decent pace for Shelburne to Grafton this time of year. Love this section, done it like 5 times now. Rangeley to Stratton is another kick butt section. Of course, keep a close eye on the weather.

    Here's the view from Goose Eye looking back at the Whites, about half way through the Mahoosuc's. Hopefully, there will be some color mixed in when you get there. Should be just starting about then.

    101_0318.JPG
    Follow slogoen on Instagram.

  3. #3
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    Gambit, it seems we'll be walking in each other's footprints this year. We leave next week for several miles in NH.

    We leave Sept 6 for whatever is left over to finish everything up north. Expect our Sept trip will include a slack near Rangley and the section from Gorham to Grafton. We may even see you as you whiz by!
    Last edited by illabelle; 08-04-2020 at 21:31.

  4. #4
    Registered User QuietStorm's Avatar
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    I did this section last August-September. I gave myself two weeks to do it because I didn't want to rush, and because of the terrain. I probably could have cut a few days but honestly the pace was perfect. I started August 30th and finished September 13th. I took neros at the Human Nature Hostel in Andover and the Hiker Hut in Rangeley. Got lost and stung by bees in the Notch. Hiked up Mahoosuc Arm after that in the rain. Slid down the Baldpates on slick rock. Had a clear day for the Saddlebacks. This is a tough section but beautiful if the weather is right. You're above tree line probably nearly as much as in the Whites. Highly recommend camping at Little Swift River Pond. The sunrise and sunset there are gorgeous. I'll be starting August 30th this year at Stratton/ME 27 and summiting hopefully on September 14th.

    Have a good hike but take your time.

  5. #5

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    1 week away from blast off on trip #70. I am ready to get up there and crawl around for a week!

    Sept 4th long term forecast is looking very promising. Hurricanes have always shifted and hit me during long trips so I am curious how the Gulf hurricane situation will play out for NH and ME.
    Trail Miles: 3,978.2 - AT Trips: 70
    AT Map 1: 2004.8
    AT Map 2: 265.0
    Sheltowee Trace Map: 59.0
    BMT Map: 57.7
    Pinhoti Trail Map: 0.0

  6. #6
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    Remnants of Hurricane Laura are forecast to clear Newfoundland by Tuesday, so her wind and rains shouldn't impact New England very much. NE will be to the left of the storm (measuring from the track), which is usually the weakest side, although if the storm merges with a front then the impact could spread out. If there's a tropical system in your future, September 4 or afterwards, it hasn't formed yet.
    Last edited by Dan Roper; 08-27-2020 at 09:25.

  7. #7

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    It's getting really nippy in the morning!
    Follow slogoen on Instagram.

  8. #8
    Registered User JNI64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    It's getting really nippy in the morning!
    I just seen where mt Washington was covered in ice 2 days ago.

  9. #9
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    Slo-Go'en's first post, regarding it getting dark early in New Hampshire by mid-September, really got my attention.

    I'll be doing a section hike in Virginia next week, building on my previous trip in mid-July. Since then, daylight is coming a good 40 minutes later, and sunset a corresponding 40 minutes earlier. Quite a change in just six weeks. Rather than having 14 hours per day to get about and wind down, there'll be about 12 or 12.5.

  10. #10
    LT '79; AT '73-'14 in sections; Donating Member Kerosene's Avatar
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    Averaging 10.5 miles a day should be just fine through this section, though it's closer to 13 mpd over what is arguably tougher terrain. The climb up Wildcat is no joke, and down is just as bad, so hopefully you can knock that out on Saturday afternoon (took me about 4 hours, and I like climbing). Pretty easy from Carter Notch to Gentian Pond. You might check out Mahoosuc Mountain Lodge instead of a motel in Bethel; they picked me up at Grafton Notch and I was the sole occupant in mid-September 2012. I wouldn't count on much in the way of fall color unfortunately. Hopefully you'll get some lovely autumn days like I did.
    GA←↕→ME: 1973 to 2014

  11. #11

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    Your first leg will be the most challenging, not just because of having more miles, but having some very rugged and steep miles. I think weather is key so I hope that long-term forecast works out for you. Rain will slow you down considerably on the steep descents because of the wet rocks. Fortunately as I recall from hiking this stretch 15 years ago, the descent from Old Speck down to Grafton isn't too bad, at least by Northern New England standards. Good luck!

  12. #12

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    I figured out that two weeks of early June in Maine gives you about as much daylight as three weeks in late Oct in N.C.

  13. #13

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    Do you have your chauffeur this time or are you shuttling?

    The weather is starting its normal end of the summer bouncing, around 36 degrees on Washington this morning supposed to be hot again later in the week. Just up your gear a bit and watch the weather trends on your various legs.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by HankIV View Post
    I figured out that two weeks of early June in Maine gives you about as much daylight as three weeks in late Oct in N.C.
    It gives you something else that you don't find in NC - black flies!

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    Do you have your chauffeur this time or are you shuttling?

    The weather is starting its normal end of the summer bouncing, around 36 degrees on Washington this morning supposed to be hot again later in the week. Just up your gear a bit and watch the weather trends on your various legs.
    No chauffeur she will be missed. Just a good hearty week on the AT backpacking with a shuttle bump halfway through the week.
    Trail Miles: 3,978.2 - AT Trips: 70
    AT Map 1: 2004.8
    AT Map 2: 265.0
    Sheltowee Trace Map: 59.0
    BMT Map: 57.7
    Pinhoti Trail Map: 0.0

  16. #16

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    The trip was a huge success. Finished each leg on time, with absolute perfect weather and a day early. Averaged 13.6 MPD with nabbing my 20 mile day in Maine going through the Crockers. This was a tough trip, but the entire week was spent on trail and it was a relaxed feeling to not pass roads or towns every day. Probably wont do a trip report on this one but would welcome questions and conversation here. I am over 2000 miles complete!!
    Trail Miles: 3,978.2 - AT Trips: 70
    AT Map 1: 2004.8
    AT Map 2: 265.0
    Sheltowee Trace Map: 59.0
    BMT Map: 57.7
    Pinhoti Trail Map: 0.0

  17. #17

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    Forget about buying any lottery tickets for awhile as you won the lottery on the weather.

    Any lack of water issues? If I remember Poplar Ridge Shelter is marginal.

    How did you like the Saddleback Stretch? Its nice long above treeline stretch that folks tend to forget about.

    Did you skip the summit of Sugarloaf?.Great views but its pretty disappointing how badly they trashed the summit.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    Forget about buying any lottery tickets for awhile as you won the lottery on the weather.

    Any lack of water issues? If I remember Poplar Ridge Shelter is marginal.

    How did you like the Saddleback Stretch? Its nice long above treeline stretch that folks tend to forget about.

    Did you skip the summit of Sugarloaf?.Great views but its pretty disappointing how badly they trashed the summit.

    Great questions:
    Water issues: "Take what ya get when you can, camel up and dont be picky" was my moto for the week. Only area i ran into serious water conservation from my perspective was around the Goose range.

    The Saddleback/ Horn was one of my favorite stretches. The Mahousic Notch is not my most favorite mile of trail. So much fun.

    I did skip Sugarloaf. I had North Crocker on my mind and I wasnt going to delay to get there for a tower covered mountain lol

    All in all it was a great trip and yes, I won the lottery on weather for the stretch.
    Trail Miles: 3,978.2 - AT Trips: 70
    AT Map 1: 2004.8
    AT Map 2: 265.0
    Sheltowee Trace Map: 59.0
    BMT Map: 57.7
    Pinhoti Trail Map: 0.0

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