We met at the outlet mall in South Burlington at 7:30 AM and took David’s car across the Lake Champlain Bridge to the parking area off Rt 73 at St. Huberts.
We got on the trail about 9 AM. The weather was partly overcast with swiftly moving clouds and patches of sun. We made quick time along the road walk to Lower Ausable Lake, then took the bridge across the Ausable River just below the dam and headed up the Alfred Weld trail (trail 35 in the ADK High Peaks Guide Book map) to the col between Sawteeth and Pyramid.
From there the trail got much steeper, and we reached the summit of Sawteeth around noon, where we took a break, had a snack, and took some pictures (actually Wolfgang took all the pictures because David’s camera spent the day on the roof of his car). We then headed back down to the col and headed up to Pyramid, reaching its summit around 1:30.
Around this time we started getting the first of several bands of brief passing showers. From there we took the short down and up over to Gothics. By this time we started hearing some distant rumbles of thunder to accompany the intermittent rain showers, so we didn’t linger at the top of Gothics, but hurried along the ADK Range Trail (ADK map 4) toward the Gothics / Armstrong col to get down below the high ridge. From the col we continued down the Beaver Meadow Trail (ADK map 34). The intermittent showers turned into a heavy downpour for about 15 minutes, but our timing was perfect, as it occurred just as we reached a large overhanging rock which is the only rain shelter on the entire hike.
We finished our lunch while waiting out the rain, and then continued down as the sun came out. At Beaver Meadow Falls we rinsed out some sweaty clothes and cooled off a bit before continuing along the West River Trail (ADK map 28), across the river on the Canyon Bridge, and out on the road. We got back to the car about 6 PM, and David’s camera was there waiting, a little wet, but still working.
Trip leader: David Hathaway
Participants: Wolfgang Hokenmaier, Scott Springer