Trip Reports for May – August, 2009 (updated 11/1/09)

October 4, 2009
Russ Kinaman
3 participants. There were not many phone calls from perspective participants, probably since the weather forecast was not good. It turned out to be, however, a nice day and a nice hike. The rocks on the Frost Trail and on Maple Ridge were a bit slippery, and the Wampahoofus was wet, but fun. The group had lunch at Butler Lodge. Participants – Kathy Adams, Phil Hazen, Russ Kinaman

Hurricane Mountain
September 20, 2009
Richard Larsen, subbing for Sheri Larsen
Four Participants. Sheri Larsen was the scheduled leader, but she had injured her leg on Mount Washington three weeks prior, so Rich was signed up as a substitute leader. Three of us met in South Burlington at 8 AM, and drove to the trailhead by 9:45 AM, where we met up with Robert Preisser who had driven up from Albany. It was a cool, totally clear, late summer day. We started up at 10 AM, and had a leisurely stroll to the top in two hours. Hurricane is similar to Camels Hump, but a little longer distance and a slightly shorter climb. After about 1/3 of the climb, it has a nice open area with some views. On top, there is a fire tower, but it is not open for climbing. We lounged near the tower for an extended period, taking in the clear views of the Adirondacks, and of the Green Mountains back in Vermont. Eventually we had to head back down, and got to the cars around 2:15 PM for our various drives home. Participants – Robert Preisser Russ Kinaman, Julie Soquet, Richard Larsen

Hedgehog Brook, moved to Camels Hump
September 19, 2009
Russ Kinaman
4 participants, plus four other GMC people. The Hedgehog Brook group met at the Richmond Park and Ride, ran into four other GMC folks, and decided to change to a mutual destination to have a larger group. Instead of Hedgehog Brook, the hike started at the Forest City trailhead, and went up to Montclair Glen. This was followed by a loop on the Allis Trail, and back down Forest City. It was a beautiful fall day, with a good group. Participants – Anne Judson, Carolyn Elliott, Tim Parson, Russ Kinaman

Mt. Hunger and White Rocks
August 23, 2009
Sheri Larsen
8 participants. The forecast for the day was 40% chance of showers. When it started raining as everyone was leaving his/her home and still raining at the Richmond Park and Ride, there were a few moments of uncertainty about whether to do the hike. But, the trip leader said she was going regardless of the weather and she got seven others to join her. Fortunately for all of us, the rain stopped before we reached the trailhead in Middlesex and it never rained again. We hiked up to Mt. Hunger first, had lunch on the top of that peak, then went down on the other side to connect to the trail to White Rocks. From White Rocks we hiked down the Bob Kemp Trail until we rejoined the trail that we used on the way up. Although there were clouds and it was hazy, we had good views on both peaks. With stops on both Hunger and White Rocks, we were on the trails for 5 hours.
In retrospect, this hike should have been advertised as Moderate to Difficult with a Moderate pace. There were several steep pitches, including having to go up a steep rock using a rope. Because of all the rainy and humid weather, the trail was quite slippery, especially the approach to and descent from White Rocks. Several people chose to slide down rocks on their butts or crab walk down on all fours. But, we all made it back to the trailhead in one piece and not too muddy. Trip Participants – Mary Bernstein, Peter Cottrell, Linda Evans, Doug Gingras, Phil Hazen, Lynda Hutchins, Christina Kelsh, Sheri Larsen

Burnt Rock Bushwhack
September 12, 2009
Joe Frank
Four Participants – The trip started at the state log-loading area (elevation 1500’) at the end of the Trapp Road in Huntington. The route followed old logging roads and the Catamount Trail to Cobb Pond at 2350’. Between Cobb Pond and the Hedgehog Brook Trail junction with the Long Trail (2850’) the route was a pure bushwhack on rough and fairly steep terrain. There were actually two trips – a scouting trip on September 3 with Joe and Ken, and the scheduled trip on September 12 with Joe, Rich, and David. On each trip, the group decided to forego a jaunt to the summit, turning back soon after reaching the LT. Participants – Joe Frank, Ken Austin, Richard Larsen, and David Warren.

Maple Ridge, Rock Garden, and Butler Lodge Loop
August 15, 2009
Russ Kinaman
7 participants. We quickly determined that we had a mix of faster hikers and slower hikers, so split into two groups, with Kelley leading the faster group and Russ the slower group. The groups finished in about 4 and 5 _ hours, respectively. Everyone was in good spirits and had a good time. Participants – Kelley Mackison, Taylor Christie, Miguel Brosse, Harvey Schugar, Carolyn Elliott, Roxanne Royce, Russ Kinaman

Mount Ellen
July 25, 2009
Bob Lang
2 participants. It was a mostly sunny day, with temperatures in the 60s, but the trail was wet and slippery because of the constant July rain and the downpour of the previous night. The intrepid hikers met at the Jerusalem Trailhead at 9 AM, and hiked to the LT, stopping at Orvis Lookout near the intersection. Then on to the summit of Mount Ellen, and lunch at the top of the chair lift. There were a number of other hikers on the trail, mostly students and teachers from Vergennes HS out for a five-day hike. We saw a toad, a snake, a salamander, moose tracks, and heard many birds. We returned to the Jerusalem TH using the same route, getting back to the trailhead about 4 PM. The total hike was 8.4 miles, with about 2500’ of elevation gain. Participants – Don Dickson, Bob Lang

Belvedere Loop
September 5, 2009
Richard Larsen
14 participants. This was a hike on a holiday weekend, on a day with predicted excellent weather, in the middle of a period of blue-bird days. What more could we want. Thirteen people showed up on time at the Essex Center Park and Ride at 8 AM, and we picked up number 14 at the Cambridge P+R a bit later. By 9:20 AM we were on the Frank Post Trail, and by 10:30 AM we were at Tillotson Camp on the Long Trail, where we stopped before heading south on the LT. Everything went well, except for the fact that the trail is in the trees, so there are no views until we reached the Belvedere summit. The trail was as dry as it ever gets, so the roots and rocks were not too slippery. The group moved along well. There was a lot of blow-down, with many trees perched just across and above the trail, and there were a few instances of people watching the trail and walking right into tree limbs – but all survived. We made the summit around 1:15 PM, had lunch, and lounged in the sun for an extended period. Eventually we headed down the Foresters Trail, arriving back at the parking area around 3 PM. It was a very good group and a very good hike. Participants – Phil Hazen, Allison Gardner, Kevin Kelley, Miguel Brosse, Jerry Lasky, Cilla Kimberly, Peggy Faucher, Marc Faucher, Scott Springer, Daniel Scheidt, Mary Keenan, Allison Rimmer, Richard Larsen

Mount Marcy
August 8, 2009
Richard Larsen
10 participants. Six of us met up in South Burlington at 7 AM to car pool to the Adirondacks to climb Marcy, with four other people going directly to Adirondak Loj by different routes. Fortunately, all the cars got to the Adirondak Loj parking area before 9AM, when the lot became full, with two of our cars being among the last admitted. The hike to Mount Marcy is 15 miles round trip with 3200’ of elevation gain, so it had been listed as ‘difficult plus’, a listing that had apparently deterred all but a strong group. We made good time to a snack break at Indian Falls. There were hundreds of hikers on the trail to Marcy, and our group passed many as we ‘kept on trucking’ to the summit, arriving 3 hours 45 minutes after starting. The weather was cool and mostly clear all day, and on top the temperatures were in the 50s with a moderate wind, but everyone had warm clothes and we were able to spend a while lounging on the top. We headed down, had another leisurely stop at Indian Falls, and then made it back to the parking area 8 hours after we started. It was an excellent hike. Participants – Robert Preisser, Xihai Kang, Marc Faucher, Peggy Faucher, Kevin Kelley, Carmen Twombley, Phil Howard, Ryan Bean, Sheri Larsen, Richard Larsen

Sterling Pond
July 7, 2009
Russ Kinaman
8 participants. It was a successful hike. Because of differences in hiking speed, the group split up into two smaller groups, one going directly to the lunch overlook, one taking a longer route around the pond. With great precision, both groups arrived at the overlook at the same time. Upon getting down to the Notch, there was lemonade, cheese, and crackers. A good time was had by all. Participants – Joanne Mellin, Carolyn Elliot, Rosemarie Conn, Sarah Fijal, Mary Keenan, Jan Grady, Phil Howard, Russ Kinaman.

6/26/09 Mt. Hunger via Waterbury Trail
3 participants, 1 dog
Our small intimate group all piled into one car and hit the trail at about 9 a.m. On the drive over though, the clouds seemed to follow us to the trail head as if they wanted to join the hike. The temperature was in the low 70’s at the start, but humid. We started the hike with high hopes of the clouds dispersing just as we summit so we could see those beautiful views of the White’s and the Green Mountains. About .5 miles into the hike the rain came to cool us off as we had started working up quite a sweat on this typical “straight up the mountain” kind of trail. Trigger desperately tried to seek refuge under heavy foliage, since she apparently didn’t appreciate the reprieve the heavy rains offered. We saw a few eastern newts in the red eft stage on the trail and found quite the humor in making eft jokes. During the red eft stage, the eft is fairly conspicuous, yet other animals seldom bother it because its skin glands produce irritating secretions. What the eft?
Once we hit the summit, the clouds briefly dispersed so we got a “peek-a-boo” look back at Camel’s Hump. We enjoyed a quick lunch, and carefully descended the slippery wet rocks back to the trail head. Once we got back in the car, we made a field trip to the new visitor center in Waterbury Center.
Participants: Miguel Bosse, Ryan Bean, Taylor Christie, Trigger and Kelley Mackison (Leader)

6/28/09 Mount Mansfield via the Subway
7 participants. The weather continued like so many other June days this year, with one low pressure area swirling southeast of us and another approaching from the west, but we got a window of about twelve hours for the Mansfield hike. We headed up Halfway House to the intersection of Canyon and Canyon North, meeting by chance a GMC summit caretaker who was also hiking the route. We turned on to Canyon North, and then continued on Canyon North Extension, and finally the Subway. The trail went up and down with short, abrupt drops, some exposure, and many places where you really didn’t want to lose your footing. In some places the trail went through rock tunnels. Our intrepid band persevered the entire way, eventually reaching the Long Trail a bit south of the Sunset Ridge intersection. We continued to the summit, arriving after about 3 hours of hiking, and had a short lunch break. The weather was still unpredictable, so we headed down, and got a few rain sprinkles on the way, but had patches of sun at other times. The trip back to the State Park took about 2 hours, for a total trip time of 5 ¼ hours. Participants – Marc Faucher, Peggy Faucher, Ed Blackwell, Phil Howard, Ted Albers, Sheri Larsen, Trip Leader – Rich Larsen
Mansfield 6/28/09

6/21/09 – Mt. Ellen
A great way to spend Father’s Day is with one half of the duo who made you possible and my dad and I did just that – with six others ascending Mt. Ellen! It was my intention when I signed up for this hike in January to actually get there so I knew what I was in for and could relate this to others. The winter came and went and then spring and here we are! So, I experienced this hike for the first time along with a few others. The weather was a bit overcast, but nothing serious was to be on the horizon that would prevent us from trekking on. So trek we did. This is a great hike, one that I would almost call easy. Just a little climbing before you hit the “T” at 2 1/2 miles, where you can proceed left over to Mad River or right, as we did and head to Sugarbush. An easy walk along the ridge from there and before us near the summit was a perfect dining spot – the chairlift and its ramp! Hung out there a bit where the bugs were eating US for lunch, so we headed down. A few snacks were enjoyed at the trailhead upon our return and everyone left with a good exercise day under their belts. Mary Bernstein, Courtney Webb, Bob Albert, Ryan Bean, Phil Hazen, Rich Larsen, Ben Gordesky. Leader Robynn Albert

6/19/09 – Jerusalem Trail to Glen Ellen Lodge
Linda Evans
4 Participants. Well, this was supposed to be a hike to Montclair Glen, but the leader spaced out and led the wrong hike! Imagine my surprise when we looked at the map and discovered we were 30 miles or more from our original destination! Nobody complained though. Our intrepid gang of all-weather hikers are into the journey more than the destination. It was another rainy, soggy day. Glen Ellen Lodge is one of the older shelters, kind of a “before” snapshot of how Montclair Glen Lodge used to look. We’ll save the hike to the newly renovated Montclair Glen for another day. Again, the sun came out just as we got in our cars and headed back home. Participants – Lisa Backe, John Lamb, Carmen Trombley, Linda Evans (leader)

6/13/09 Mt Abe
Richard Larsen, subbing for Sheri Larsen
6 participants. This was one of the typical June 2009 days, where the forecast was that it would probably be OK, but maybe not – who knows? As it turns out, it was OK, with only a few minutes of light rain while we were on the way out, followed by a bit of sun! It was a typical Mount Abe hike, taking just under two hours each way to get to the top, and spend 20 minutes on the top so the whole trip was about 4 hours. Since nothing outrageous happened, various people offered to have an injury or other event to spice up the trip report, but no one actually delivered on the offer. Participants – Ryan Bean, Rosemarie Conn, Cathy Tilley, Ted Albers, Peter Cottrell, Richard Larsen

6/12/09 Camel’s Hump via Monroe Trail
Linda Evans
3 participants. A small but resolute gang of all-weather hikers scaled the summit of the mighty Couching Lion on a very rainy day. We had the summit all to ourselves – naturally. We took the roundabout descent via the Alpine Trail, past the wreckage of the WWII plane for some photo ops. Beautiful day for admiring the many alpine waterfalls. As luck would have it, the sun came out just as we headed back home. Participants – Lisa Backe, John Lamb, Linda Evans (leader)

6/7/09 Whiteface from Smuggler’s Notch
David Hathaway
5 participants. We met at the top of Smuggler’s notch at 9 AM, with David, Christine, and Bailey (David’s wife’s dog) coming up from Jeffersonville, and Rich and Ryan coming up from Stowe. We had just written a note to Ken letting him know we had started off when he rolled in at about 9:10. So at about 9:15 we were on our way. The weather was sunny, cool, and breezy. We made a good pace with only very brief stops up to the Long Trail junction, Sterling Pond, the top of the Sterling ski lift, and reached Sterling Shelter at about 10 AM, where we woke up Christopher, a Long Trail hiker who was sleeping in. At this point David let Bailey off leash and he led us on, crossing one ski trail and coming out onto another for the last part of the climb to the top of Madonna Peak, where we could look out on our next goals of Whiteface Shelter and Whiteface (aka Sterling) Peak. We took a slightly longer break there, then went down another ski trail, into the woods down some fairly steep trails and crossing one last ski trail before leaving the ski area. From there to Whiteface Shelter there were a lot of ups and downs, passing by Morse Mountain, and continuing on to Whiteface Shelter, where we ate lunch and discussed our various knee ailments, among other things. After hearing from David and Rich how steep the trail is up to Whiteface summit, Christine decided to wait for the rest of us at the shelter, and possibly start back slowly. After arranging the “I wasn’t eaten by a bear” signal (she would leave a rock in the shelter if she’d started back), the rest of us started up. We passed one big blow down, and then climbed the trail (very steep, as promised) to the summit, getting there around 1 PM. About this time it began to cloud over, and continued to do so for the rest of the day. On the way back to the shelter, Bailey and David started to pull ahead a bit, and when they got back to the shelter Christine was gone but her rock was there, and so was Christopher (the same LT hiker we’d woken up at Sterling Shelter). As soon as Rich got back to the shelter, David and Bailey headed out again to try to catch up with Christine, promising to wait at the top of Madonna if we got there before the rest caught up. David and Bailey caught up with Christine at the ski trail (David was calling “Bailey, where are you” as he approached the ski trail, and heard Christine call back “he’s right here”). The three then went up the ski slope to the summit, bypassing the short stretch of trail through the woods between ski trails. They hung out in and around the warming hut (to get out of the wind), finishing lunch, and waiting for Rich, Ryan, and Ken. We all started out again, with Bailey and David in the lead. At some point Bailey got out of sight, and somehow got behind David without either of them realizing it, so David chargerd ahead to catch up with Bailey while Bailey ran back to find David. At Sterling Shelter David ran into a hiker who, when asked, said he hadn’t seen Bailey, so David figured out what must have happened, and started back to look for Bailey. He passed Christine, Rich, Ken, and Ryan, and got in his trail running for the day going back roughly a half mile, where he found Bailey, leashed him again, and ran back to catch up with the others, which he did a little ways down the Sterling Pond Trail after it diverged from the Long Trail. About this time it started raining, and some (but not all) donned rain gear, but we finished the last section before getting too wet, reaching the cars about 4:45. Participants – Rich Larsen, Ryan Bean, Christine Simpson, Ken Belliveau, David Hathaway

6/6/09 National Trails Day Trail Work
Pam Gillis and John Sharp
9 participants. Cleared the Long Trail between Buchanan shelter and 1/4 mile past Ravens Wind. Split into 3 groups, with one group doing Buchanan to Eagles Nest, one group doing Eagles Nest north and the other group (with chain saw) doing the most northern part. Good-sized tree to cut at north end (reported by the adopter). Outdoor Gear exchange provided 6 of the volunteers. This outing got a brief write-up in the Burlington Free Press from a phone interview before the outing. Participants – Aaron Smock, Joshua Stephen, Kate Jesdale, Laura Lane, Pete Lane, Stephen McKibban, Zeke Farwell, Phil Hazen

5/30/09 Spring Trail Work
Pam Gillis and John Sharp
4 participants. Cleared the Lake Mansfield Trail and the Long Trail between Taylor and the Mayo/Clark col. Had a thunderstorm. Lots of clipping to do, not many trees to cut. Participants – Dot Myer, George Long, Jeff Wehrwein, Joel Tilley

5/25/09 Franconia Ridge
Richard Larsen
9 participants. I always claim that this is the best day-hike in New England – even though it is not in the Green Mountains! But, it’s a long drive from Burlington, so it does not get done that frequently by the section. Seven of us met at 7:30 AM at the Richmond Park and Ride, we picked up another in East Montpelier, and then met the last participant at the trailhead, as she had camped at Franconia the night before.
This turned out to be a great day to do the ridge. The temperature was probably 50 degrees on the mountain, with few clouds, and almost all the snow gone. We went up the Falling Waters Trail. The stream had enough flow to create great waterfalls, but not so much flow as to make the crossings difficult. After a bit more than 2 hours, we broke out onto the ridge, and into a very strong west wind. We found some large rocks behind which we could have lunch, and then headed north toward Lincoln and Lafayette Peaks, with the wind howling across the ridge trying to blow us off. Hiking poles were a real plus to help maintain balance. From the summit of Lafayette, we headed west down the slope toward Greenleaf Hut, now going directly into the wind. We were quite glad to reach tree-line, and then the hut, as we were finally out of the wind. From there, it was just the long walk down the Old Bridle Path and back to Lafayette Place. The total hike was about 9 miles, with 4300’ of elevation gain and loss. Participants – Cilla Kimberly, Jerry Lasky, Tom Ruffle, Ed Blackmore, Heather Allin, Marc Faucher, Peggy Faucher, Sheri Larsen, Richard Larsen.

5/23/2009 – Adirondacks Pyramid / Gothics outing
The day was forecasted as high 60’s and 40 percent chance of scattered showers. So, this fare weather only trip leader made the executive decision to move forward and gather the eleven (11) troops and head out, across the pond!
Met up with my father whom a few folks had met on the Giant outing last fall. Up to the St. Hubert’s Club, then a 3 1/2 mile walk up the access road to the lake, then the real hike began! We made great time to Pyramid (very windy, but the views were super, with a bit of snow visible on Marcy and a few others), then a little lunch out of the wind with brownies courtesy of MB’s mom who loves to bake and now is in possession of our outings schedule! Onto Gothics. Still great views. So at this point we are well ahead of our time schedule and the turning point of the trip is when we were at the junction of the Gothics descent and Armstrong/ Lower and Upper Wolf Jaws. A vote was taken and onto Armstrong we were headed. Since there were no casualties at this point, onto Upper WJ we headed! This is where we split – some to Lower WJ and some to the parking area. We were within minutes of each other. The timing was perfect!
Not one drop of rain and many happy people later, we tailgated it at the parking area then onto the Noonmark for pie and eats! A great day altogether I think all would agree!
Participants: Phil Hazen, Paul Demers, Hank Dombroski, Ronni Sasse, Bob Albert, Jackie Liebman, Christopher Morriss, Mark Blanchard, Rich Larsen, Ryan Bean. Trip Leader – Robynn L. Albert

5/17/09 Missiquoi Valley Rail Trail Bike
David Hathaway
3 Participants. David and Phil had met at 9 AM at the Cambridge commuter lot, loaded bike onto David’s bike rack, and headed up to Sheldon Corners. Rich was waiting at the creemee stand for a guide through the maze of the sheds and buildings back to the trail parking area, which is at the 9 mile marker on the trail (09 miles from the trail start in St. Albans). Properly helmeted, we started north around 9:45. It was partly cloudy, cool, and a little breezy to start, but the wind started picking up after we passed Enosburg Falls. We reached the end of the trail in Richford at the 26+ mile marker somewhere around noon, and after a brief rest and a bite to eat (for those who hadn’t left food in the car), headed back. The wind had picked up and was a very consistent and strong headwind on the way back, but we got back to the cars around 2:30. Participants – Richard Larsen, Phil Hazen, David Hathaway

5/16/09 Women’s Trail Workshop
Pam Gillis
6 participants. Cleared the Nebraska Notch trail, the Long Trail to Taylor Lodge and the Clara Bow Trail. Pam showed the women new to trail work the basics and we all did clipping and cleaning waterbars. Met the men just north of Nebraska Notch Road and watched Phil cut the tree. Participants – Abby Miller, Carrie Abels, Laura Make, Miranda Butson, Nancy Reynolds, Dot Myer

5/16/09 Spring Trail Work
Pam Gillis (really Phil Hazen)
4 participants. This was the men’s contingents on the Women’s Trail Workshop day.
Cleared the Butler Lodge Trail and the Long Trail between Butler Lodge and Nebraska Notch. The trail was in good condition, but there was one very large tree to cut. Participants – George Long, Joel Tilley, John Pennucci, Phil Hazen

5/9/09 Spring Trail Work
Pam Gillis
12 participants. Cleared the Long Trail between Bolton Notch Road and Buchanan Shelter. It rained some, but not bad and trail was in good condition. Participants – Carline Squires, Dot Myer, George Long, Jim Talbot, John Pennucci ,Ken Austin, Linda Evans, Lisa McEwing, Louanne Nielsen, Maria Stadlmayer, Matt Kemp, Matt Storer

5/3/09 Essex Jct. NE bike ride
Robynn Albert
6 participants. It could not have been a nicer day, a nicer ride or a nicer group of people. Not having biked with any of the riders who signed up for this outing, I had no idea what to expect. The weather forecast was low-mid 60s with little wind. So, we had a great start in knowing we were not going to get wet or blown off our bikes!
The Essex Center P&R was our meeting spot and all arrived within minutes of each other. Introductions, a review of the route and we were on our way! Essex Junction, Colchester, Milton, Fairfax, Cambridge, Jeffersonville, Underhill, Jericho and back to our start – the eight city loop as I have since dubbed it. Lots of “rollers” as DH mentioned, who was on a tandem with her visually impaired partner. They are training for the Vermont 50, which DB attempted last year with another trainer and made it 30 miles. WOW! They certainly will finish this year with the training schedule they have set. And PH, no biking whatsoever the last two years and he shows up with his hybrid. Oh boy, who would have known he would be flying down the hills like a 10 year old! DM and FG had been out just a little this year, but are no strangers to the roads.
The best thing about the ride, besides the points mentioned in the first sentence, was we were almost always within sight of each other. Who would have known?!?! Two stops, one in Fairfax and the second in Jeff, to fuel up our bodies with several checkpoints from start to finish to make sure everyone was doing OK. And with nearly 54 miles under our belts, we enjoyed a small tailgate party complete with chips, peanuts, chocolate, soda and water at our starting point.
The script could not have been written better for an outing to replace being off trail in mud season! Participants – Phil Hazen, Diana Hank, Frank Gibney, Dennis Bilodeau, Diane Muhr, Robynn Albert

5/3/09 Abbey Pond
Carlene Squires
5 participants. This was a nice spring hike. Abbey Pond outlet brook has some beautiful cascades. Brook crossing were a tad bit challenging but accomplished with few mishaps. Some early spring flowers were seen and enjoyed. Participants – Dot Myer, Barbara Wynroth, Ryan Bean, Carlene Squires, and one other.

5/2/09 Spring Trail Work
Pam Gillis
9 participants. Cleared the Long Trail between Jonesville and Bolton Notch Road. It was a nice day and trail was in good condition, but does need better blazing in the middle. Participants – Christopher Morriss, Dot Myer, George Long, Joel Tilley, John Pennucci, Matt Storer, Phil Hazen, Stephen Burke

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