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  1. #21
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    The NOBO climb out of Franconian Notch seemed to go straight up and forever. I think the climbs in NH are absurd including S. Kinsman.

  2. #22

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    Hi, Jay. Glad to hear your Katahdin hike went well. My son and I stopped at Pinkham Notch and will continue next year most likely.

  3. #23
    thru hiker ridgerunninrat81's Avatar
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    Because I was not in as good hiker shape when I climbed Katahdin as I was during the longest part of my hike in 1981, Due to the fact that time flattens out the trail lol I vote for Katahdin.

  4. #24

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    I agree with Bearpaw I went down SOBO on Old Blue in the dark ( not intentionally , ran out of daylight cause of stupidness ) Took a zero next day and caught brook trout in that stream at the bottom and then got murdered again on Moody. It's funny cause I used to work with this guy who went off the deep end and attacked an in law with a crossbow no less . He was a section hiker on the AT and I asked him before I went out in ME. what to watch out for and he said Old Blue and Moody I was hoping it was his psychosis but no it wasnt- he was indeed lucid when he warned me about those bad boys !

  5. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Just a Hiker View Post
    Old Blue is one of those Mountains that doesn't get talked about alot, but it's definately a hard one whether you are climbing it or going down it. It's a steep climb going NOBO, and if you're coming down it SOBO, your knees are shot by the time you get down to South Arm Rd.......then you have to cross the road and climb Moody Mt. Definately a tough little stretch of trail that I always dread.
    We went up Moody as they were doing maintenance. The trail was severely eroded and rope was tied to help us climb it.

    Nothing in the south compares to anything up north. Stecoah just stunk because we didnt have trail legs yet.
    Old Blue was a killer. The climb out of Mahoussac Notch was crazy hard, plus I was really friggin tired. Damn i wanna thru hike again

  6. #26
    Registered User DavidNH's Avatar
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    Default steepest part of AT

    As one who has thru hiked I can say that there are many candidates for this.

    Coming out of Secoha gap is for sure a challenge. Plenty of steep stretches in NC. But in my book, the trail doesn't really get serious until New Hampshire and nothing compares to Maine. The climb up Katahdin is as steep as it gets, short of needing ropes! The Mahoosics are a bit less steep but still very challenging. Then there is the carter range where you lower or raise yourself over short vertical stretches. The Mahoosics are also very rugged.


    david

  7. #27
    Registered User John B's Avatar
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    I've only section hiked from Amicalola through Catawba, VA, and maybe it's because it came at the end of a 15-mile day or maybe it's because I had been low on water all day or maybe it's because I'm a leftie commie lib, but the NOBO climb up Roan Mt was a near-death experience for me. I thought it would never end. It totally kicked my butt.

    If I'm ever lucky enough to make it to New Hampshire, Vermont, or Maine, I'll probably hire a sherpa.

  8. #28

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    Wildcat E up from Pinkham Notch has its moments as well.

  9. #29
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    What you remember as the "steepest" often depends on the time of day you hiked it. Was it your last mile as you ended the day or your first mile in the morning?
    There is a section in NC, just north of Nantahhala, it goes straight up for almost a mile with hardly a switchback. In NH just north of the Galehead Hut the trail climbs straight up .8 miles to the summit of South Twin MT.
    Here is a proifile view of that ridge as seen from North Twin:

    http://outdoors.webshots.com/photo/1...45831896nqEABH

    The AT goes up it without a turn over some large granite.

    I Maine how about the "Arm" of Old Spec up from Mahoosuc Notch?

  10. #30
    LT '79; AT '73-'14 in sections; Donating Member Kerosene's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambler View Post
    In NH just north of the Galehead Hut the trail climbs straight up .8 miles to the summit of South Twin MT.
    We tackled that climb the first thing on a cool mid-September morning after a big breakfast at the Hut. I just powered to the top without a stop!
    GA←↕→ME: 1973 to 2014

  11. #31
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    i remember going up wildcat and going down it with some choice words for both directions. it was worse coming all the way from gorahm and ending with that knee busting decent into pinkham.

  12. #32
    LT '79; AT '73-'14 in sections; Donating Member Kerosene's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitewalker View Post
    i remember going up wildcat and going down it with some choice words for both directions. it was worse coming all the way from gorahm and ending with that knee busting decent into pinkham.
    I get to start my next New England section hike from Pinkham Notch, probably after sitting on a plane and shuttle all day. Should be interesting.
    GA←↕→ME: 1973 to 2014

  13. #33
    Getting out as much as I can..which is never enough. :) Mags's Avatar
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    Northern New England (the Whites, the Mahoosucs, northern LT) still has the most physically challenging grades of any of the trails I've hiked. Egads...
    Paul "Mags" Magnanti
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  14. #34
    Registered User Morning Glory's Avatar
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    I've only section hiked about 400 or so miles...most of them south of Damascus, and about 30 miles in the HMW. I hiked Roan SOBO, so I didn't have to deal with the steep climb like NOBOs do. Here are a few of the worse climbs I can remember:
    Pond Mountain.....for some reason, that thing just kicked my tail.
    Swim Bald.....the climb up out of NOC didn't seem to bad until we reached the "jump up". However, the book said it was only .7 mile from their to the top of Swim Bald. There's no way that could be accurate....it had had to be more than 1.5 miles....and maybe I was just tired, but it just about killed me.
    The climb after Stecoah Gap I was dreading...and yeah it was steep...but I think had heard how terrible it was so I was somewhat mentally prepared for it so it didn't seem too bad.
    Now, up in Maine, Barren Mountain kicked me. Probably because I was stupid and didn't fill up with water at the bottom, and I got fairly dehydrated. I don't think I've ever been so happy to see the top of any other mountain.
    Soli Deo Gloria

  15. #35
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    In no particular order, in the North, South Kinsman, Wildcat, and Webster-Jackson. Also, Mahoosuc Arm isn't exactly a lark, especially if it's wet. And of course, Moosilauke in either direction is a bit of work.

    In the South, it's the climb out of Stecoah, hands down. I think I've done that one 14 times in 15 years and I swear every time I'll never do it again.

    Then, come March.....

  16. #36

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    Mahoosuc Arm

  17. #37

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    I suppose the answer lies in how you define "part." I agree with Skyline that the middle part of Katahdin - the mile or so, I guess it's less - right up to the Tableland is the steepest. But if the question is which mountain is the steepest overall throughout the whole ascent, then I'd echo some of the other choices - Old Blue and Moody (which I just did again last August), Webster Cliffs, Moosilauke hiking SOBO, the ascent out of Stekoah Gap, S. Kinsman, Lehigh Gap. Hiking SOBO in the Smokies, I found Thunderhead and Brier Knob very steep. Also hiking SOBO, St. John's Ledges in CT is short but very steep, rather reminiscent of those steep knobs in NY west of the Hudson.

    As we all know, Maine has lots of tough climbs particularly in the SW portion. But foot-for-foot, I found Pleasant Pond Mountain as steep as anywhere else. In fact, I strained a rib cage muscle simply from lifting my leg up one of the many high rocks on my '05 hike.

  18. #38
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    I came down the diamond slope of Sugarloaf to end a day hike. Now, that was steep. I climbed that same slope to get back on the trail the next day.

  19. #39
    Registered User sarge95's Avatar
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    mahoosic arm, moody mtn, saddle back, south madison

  20. #40
    Registered User Wags's Avatar
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    from shelter to water and back at peter's mountain shelter
    " It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid." ~Clint Eastwood, High Plains Drifter

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