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Thread: Engine Hill Bushwhack In Summer

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    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Engine Hill Bushwhack In Summer

    Does the Engine Hill bushwhack have enough of a "tread" to follow in the Summer without breaking out the compass? Might do a loop of some sort out that way this weekend and after seeing the birch glades on Rainbow Trail last week and reflecting on my dumpster-fire attempt of the bushwhack in Winter I think I'd like to cruise through there and check it out if it isn't a major undertaking.

    I went through some old posts on the topic but they generally reference Winter and are vague as to the route in Summer. Any info would be appreciated. Don't want to duplicate the mess I made over the Winter.
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    Senior Member JustJoe's Avatar
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    I've been through there in summer. You really can't even see your feet do to a very thick blanket if fern. Which hides numerous tripping hazards.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DayTrip View Post
    Does the Engine Hill bushwhack have enough of a "tread" to follow in the Summer without breaking out the compass? Might do a loop of some sort out that way this weekend and after seeing the birch glades on Rainbow Trail last week and reflecting on my dumpster-fire attempt of the bushwhack in Winter I think I'd like to cruise through there and check it out if it isn't a major undertaking.

    I went through some old posts on the topic but they generally reference Winter and are vague as to the route in Summer. Any info would be appreciated. Don't want to duplicate the mess I made over the Winter.
    If it's more birch glades you're after, Eagle Link in the Wild River has some pretty expansive ones.

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    Senior Member Tom Rankin's Avatar
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    You could contour along, but... it's pretty flat, and flat usually means wet.
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    Senior Member TJsName's Avatar
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    And if you're looking for a hike with no chance of a dumpster fire, I think the Red Bench Trail would be a safe bet.
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    Senior Member JustJoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Rankin View Post
    You could contour along, but... it's pretty flat, and flat usually means wet.
    Forgot to mention that. Unlike winter where it's just a straight line, there's a lot of drainage avoidance zigs and zags.

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    Senior Member alexmtn's Avatar
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    I'm not a fan of the trailed route, so a goodly number of my 12+ visits to Isolation have been via the EHB. Once you're more than a few feet away from the trail, there's no "tread", principally because most folks in the 3 seasons use the trails. Because of the aforementioned swamp issue, you do want to arc upwards, resulting in a bulbous/gibbous hypotenuse rather than what would otherwise be a very damp straight hypotenuse. So long as you're paying attention to elevation, the Isolation Trail is pretty much the broad side of a barn to hit on the way in, as is the Rocky Branch Trail on the way out. The woods are fairly open, with dense clumps to navigate around. Altimeter and compass are useful on this one.

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    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Sounds like I will probably pass then. I do recall a lot of drainages even in the Winter. Snow was at least up to my neck in most spots yet had lots of open holes to grass and actual trickling water. If it is that wet it'll be no better than the already wet Rocky Branch Trail. I may just cut off the lower corner to Isolation to save some vertical and mileage from the "V" where the trail cuts over to cross to Isolation junction. When I did in Winter I eventually worked my way lower and I recall the woods being much more open in the lower parts of that area. Guess I'll just wing it. Thanks all.
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 46/48; NY 46: 5/46

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    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexmtn View Post
    I'm not a fan of the trailed route, so a goodly number of my 12+ visits to Isolation have been via the EHB. Once you're more than a few feet away from the trail, there's no "tread", principally because most folks in the 3 seasons use the trails. Because of the aforementioned swamp issue, you do want to arc upwards, resulting in a bulbous/gibbous hypotenuse rather than what would otherwise be a very damp straight hypotenuse. So long as you're paying attention to elevation, the Isolation Trail is pretty much the broad side of a barn to hit on the way in, as is the Rocky Branch Trail on the way out. The woods are fairly open, with dense clumps to navigate around. Altimeter and compass are useful on this one.

    Alex
    So am I going to need to calculate the cosine of my bearing and multiply by the sum of the sqaures?? :P Seriously though, I get what you're saying. And it is a pretty straightforward bushwhack. My issue in Winter was not direction but that the snow was so soft I couldn't avoid walking more than 50' without sinking in up to my waist or worse, even in snowshoes. And this issue did not start until I was about 2/10 ths of a mile into the fun so I was kind of committed at that point. Eventually I had to just pick a route with the firmest snow and take it where it led me. Eventually I believe I came out at around 2950' on Rocky Branch, well below the "official" start, which was obscured by fresh snow and was why I missed in the first place. (I took the trails on the way out because I never saw the start of the whack).
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 46/48; NY 46: 5/46

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    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoshandBaron View Post
    If it's more birch glades you're after, Eagle Link in the Wild River has some pretty expansive ones.
    Not specifically searching for birch glades. Just figured it would be a nice addition to the trip out to Isolation. I'll definitely file that trail away for future reference though because I loved the Rainbow Trail and definitely intend to get back to the Wild River Wilderness area.
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 46/48; NY 46: 5/46

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    Senior Member TJsName's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DayTrip View Post
    Not specifically searching for birch glades. Just figured it would be a nice addition to the trip out to Isolation. I'll definitely file that trail away for future reference though because I loved the Rainbow Trail and definitely intend to get back to the Wild River Wilderness area.
    If you like it, then I definitely suggest the Moriah Brook Trail. Yes, the top mile is very much Wilderness, the lower half is beautiful. Worth even as an out and back, or a loop with Moriah and Shelburne Moriah. Just need to watch watch levels or it's a long walk down to the bridge by Hastings.
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    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJsName View Post
    If you like it, then I definitely suggest the Moriah Brook Trail. Yes, the top mile is very much Wilderness, the lower half is beautiful. Worth even as an out and back, or a loop with Moriah and Shelburne Moriah. Just need to watch watch levels or it's a long walk down to the bridge by Hastings.
    My plan early in the week was to do some sort of overnight loop in there. It sounds like a cool area. Then as the forecast went from awesome to crap I continued downgrading my plans. If it keeps up I'll probably just clean my garage tomorrow. (Actually I won't do that because I won't be able to hike 2 of the next 3 weekends so I'll just have to enjoy the rain.)
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 46/48; NY 46: 5/46

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    Senior Member sierra's Avatar
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    The only route for Isolation that ever interested me, is via the Dry River Valley. Thus, its the only way I have gone. I plan on doing this route in the fall, with a camp on the river. Having trout for dinner, pretty much seals the deal on this route.

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    Senior Member wardsgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sierra View Post
    The only route for Isolation that ever interested me, is via the Dry River Valley. Thus, its the only way I have gone. I plan on doing this route in the fall, with a camp on the river. Having trout for dinner, pretty much seals the deal on this route.
    That is truly the best way to go up Isolation. I have hiked Isolation many times via that route. It has the best of everything about the Whites. Anxious to go back again!
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    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sierra View Post
    The only route for Isolation that ever interested me, is via the Dry River Valley. Thus, its the only way I have gone. I plan on doing this route in the fall, with a camp on the river. Having trout for dinner, pretty much seals the deal on this route.
    Have to try that one of these days. I've traveled all the trails in the Dry River wilderness except that stretch of the Isolation Trail to the Davis Path. I have to say other than the Oakes Gulf area high up (which is awesome) and the sections of trails that are around the river/river crossings I'm not a huge fan of the area. Mud, blow downs and fairly unexciting stretches of woods. Of course I remember hating Rocky Branch and Isolation and I enjoyed them so I should probably head back in there for another look. Been at least 2 years I think since I was there.

    I wound up camping on Davis SAT night and took the "standard" route up Rocky Branch, Isolation and the Davis Path. It was "relatively" dry for that route (dry feet the whole way to Davis Path in trail runners believe it or not) and I actually enjoyed the route far more than I remembered. I love the stretch of Isolation along the Rocky Branch Trail with all the crossings and pools.
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 46/48; NY 46: 5/46

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