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arghman
05-04-2006, 11:53 AM
I'd been planning to hike Mt Hale on Saturday as a (relatively) short warmup NH4K hike... but Zealand Road appears to be closed according to the USFS road status page.

Am torn between Willey or Galehead (a bit long) or Zealand (Zealand Rd closure kind of rules this out also) as alternatives; the other NH4K's I have left are longer hikes / more involved planning.

(VT is still under mud season; Maine's a bit far away; Chocorua is a possibility but the plant I wanted to confirm ID won't be in bloom until later; Sandwich Mtn is something I'm saving for a group hike in August...) any other suggestions?

jmegillon149
05-04-2006, 12:01 PM
what do you mean as "warmup", it could differ significantly, anyway:

I think Tom/Field is a good one, and Willey can be added or not, depending on how you feel, perfect situation for getting back in the swing of things

Moosilauke via Glencliff or Carriage Road would be pretty good, you may want to hold off on Beaver Brook (even though it rules), as its much steeper and probably still slick

Pompelly on Monadnock is a good intermediate hike, much longer, more exposed, more scenic and a lot less crowded than other Monadnock hikes

Double Bow
05-04-2006, 01:54 PM
The usual 4K warmup hike is the Welch-Dickey loop. In case you haven't heard, it's one of the 8 Best Hikes in the Northeast! :D

Willey via the Ethan Pond and Willey Range trails will give you a bit of a workout though it would be easier than going in via Kendron Flume. Gale River Loop Road is now open so Galehead might be "doable" for you as well. There's only one steeper stretch.

Why not give Mt Parker or Crawford a try? They're both really great and have a good amount of elevation and mileage to get you going.

TDawg
05-04-2006, 04:03 PM
I'll agree with Welch Dickey and add Hedgehog and Potash as good options.

But if I were you I'd do the loop over Morgan and Percival in Holderness. Great lake views and boulder caves if you should choose to navigate them. There are alternate routes around them but the caves are FUN! The trailhead is on NH113 off NH3, same parking area as Rattlesnake, just go the other way.

arghman
05-04-2006, 04:26 PM
thanks for all the suggestions -- most of those I've done already... this year my time is tight so I'm being "goal-oriented" this year & trying to get 4K's done (10 left). Parker -- hmm, haven't done that one yet, will have to read the guidebook...

re: Galehead -- Mohamed Ellozy's site mentions a brook crossing that sounds iffy (& we have had quite a bit of rain this wk...).

I'll probably end up doing Willey. (have done Tom/Field/Avalon already in a prior hike)

Kevin Rooney
05-04-2006, 06:36 PM
Don't discount Hale just because the road's closed. It's not a long walk - after the first hill it's mostly flat. I don't think it would take any longer than Willey.

If you do decide on Willey - bring some traction aid. If you run into ice near the top steeps you'll surely want them!

bryan
05-04-2006, 07:19 PM
i'm with kevin. the roadwalk to the trailhead takes no more than 30-45 minutes and would be a great warm up to your "warm up". it's nice a pretty (and sometimes muddy) this time of year too.

bryan

Lizzy
05-05-2006, 02:35 PM
Don't know if you've done this one already, but I don't think there's an easier 4k hike in NH than Osceola from Tripoli Rd.

pilgrim
05-05-2006, 02:59 PM
Parker -- hmm, haven't done that one yet, will have to read the guidebook...
Don't pass up the side trip to Cave Mt. if you do Parker. Like Crawford, you can extend the hike beyond the summit if you're feeling energetic. Same with Tremont, which is in the same region and gives a better workout in the upper switchbacks.

Mike P.
05-05-2006, 03:21 PM
Hale even with the road would be my first 4K if I was looking for an easier trip, Willey is steep up high & you'll likely find some ice, question will be is the ice where it's steep. Hale does not have that concern, the hardest part of the trip in winter is ice on a side hill at an elevation likely to be free of snow now.

IF others were looking at this & looking for warm ups that are not 4K's I'd add all of these:

Almost any Catskill hike, several of these are as hard as at least 50% of the NH 4K's
Greylock & Saddleball loop from East side
Everett & Race
Monadnock, Pumpelly being the best at 4.5 each way.

arghman
05-05-2006, 04:12 PM
hmm, maybe I will attempt Mt Hale. (Looking like Sunday rather than tomorrow since tomorrow = cloudy = better plant photography weather)

if the road is closed, where do you park? Is Zealand Rd completely closed or can you park near the campground there? (is it obvious when you get there)

Jim lombard
05-05-2006, 04:25 PM
I think the road is still closed, last year it opened on the third week of May. I love Hale and often do it in the spring with the hobblebush in bloom.
There's parking down on RT-302 very near the entrance to Zealand road.

Blue
05-05-2006, 04:43 PM
We did Hale last weekend. The road is closed, but an easy walk. Snow at 3100 ft was soft and a cool break from warm temps. We liked Hale enough that we took a summit nap.

Go for it!

chas
05-05-2006, 05:56 PM
We did Hale last weekend. The road is closed, but an easy walk. Snow at 3100 ft was soft and a cool break from warm temps. We liked Hale enough that we took a summit nap.

Go for it!

I drove by the entrance to Zealand rd last Sunday on the way to the Base rd and I noticed what looked like a piece of heavy equipment parked on the bridge at the beginning of Zealand rd. Is there a problem with the bridge that might prevent it from openning later this month??

Chas.

roadtripper
05-05-2006, 05:59 PM
Two more suggestions:

~ N. Kearsarge
~ Mt. Cardigan loop

- Greg

Roxi
05-05-2006, 06:41 PM
Don't know if you've done this one already, but I don't think there's an easier 4k hike in NH than Osceola from Tripoli Rd.

Osceola is a beautiful hike with a lot of "bang for the buck" in terms of effort vs. views, however Tripoli Road is still closed and IIRC, it is several miles from the gate to the trailhead, much farther than Zealand Rd. to Hale's trailhead.

Jason, I'm also considering doing Hale on Sunday, so maybe I'll see you on the trail. :)

arghman
05-07-2006, 07:28 PM
didn't realize until looking at the map / WMG that the roadwalk was 2.5 mi each way... so I ended up hiking Mt Willey (steep but nice) & had the trail all to myself except for this panhandler hanging out at the summit & nearby outlook:
http://static.flickr.com/52/142381559_da64bb624f_m.jpg (http://static.flickr.com/52/142381559_da64bb624f_o.jpg)

Mike P.
05-07-2006, 11:16 PM
Thanks for the Willey photo, I've been twice with never seeing more than 100 feet from the viewpoint.... Someday I'll get there on a nice day!