The three non-Underhill folks carpooled to the Underhill Center park and ride where they met the trip leader at 9 AM, and proceeded up to the state park. The road past the winter parking area had a little snow, but was quite passable, so we parked by the state park gate and got on the trail by 9:20.
The sky was overcast, the temperature was in the 20s, and wind was calm as we started out. The overcast and wind increased and the temperature dropped as we climbed. Some started without, but we were all wearing microspikes or HillSounds by the time we go to the Cantilever Rock spur trail.
We saw several other groups on the way up, mostly Canadians, and were spread out enough (with the trip leader slowly bringing up the rear) that our various groups were often interleaved. There was a strong wind from the southwest of perhaps 30 mph or more as we reached the summit just before noon, but we managed to get a little shelter on the east side of the summit to eat lunch.
Since visibility was poor and the strong wind in our faces would have been unpleasant, we opted to abandon the planned ridge traverse, and instead went down Laura Cowles trail, which got us out of the wind much sooner. Walking and occasionally sliding downhill was much faster than than trudging up, so we made good time and reached the cars around 1:45.
Participants: Phil Hazen, Holly Creeks, Gary Kupperblatt, David Hathaway (leader). Photos: Phil, Holly, and a passing Canadian hiker.