View Full Version : Redington 3/22/08

Jay Meyer
03-26-2008, 01:48 PM
I summited Redington on Saturday, 3/22/08, during an 2 day trip staying over at Caribou Pond. The second day (when I attempted Sugarloaf) turned into a real "Charlie Foxtrot" so I'm repressing that memory and will just describe Redington.

I took an interesting and enjoyable route which started and ended at the Sugarloaf Golf Course, because I wanted to avoid parking or a road walk on Rt. 27/16. The 11th Tee is across the South Branch of the Carrabassett River (accessed by bridge) from the rest of the course, and provides a convenient starting point for a relatively easy bushwhack through open hardwoods up to the Caribou Valley Road. The Caribou Valley Road is well packed by snowmobiles all the way to Caribou Pond, and a nice easy and scenic ski (no skins needed).

After dropping my overnight gear at the established primitive campsite on the east side of Caribou Pond (a round clearing SE of the bridge/outlet), I headed toward Redington on skis with skins. I planned to take the normal "Ellozy" route, which I've done several times without snow; the logging roads leading to the foot trail portion of that route were all packed by snowmobiles and easy skiing. The steep section right above the turnoff from the road around the pond is easily managed with skins, and on the way downhill with a strong snowplow or tele turns. Unfortunately I missed the turnoff for the foot trail, which is at one corner of an "S" turn, right after the road crosses a small gully and turns from south to east-northeast; you'll know you've gone too far if you start heading straight toward the Redington/Crocker saddle on the road. I swiftly realized the missed turn, but since I have bushwhacked Redington before from that saddle and also wanted to explore the road leading there, I figured I'd give it a try this time. This turned out to be a very bad move; for Redington in winter I urge you to stick to the Ellozy route!!!

At the saddle, I dropped my pack (taking only a snack and water), switched to snowshoes and headed into the woods generally along the height of the broad ridge. As in summertime, the 'whack starts out deceptively easily through scattered spruce, but quickly degrades into high elevation spruce and sapling thickets. And in this deep snow (6' or more) there were lots of spruce traps. But after enduring these joys for what seemed like a very long time, I emerged on the upper portion of the foot trail and followed it easily up to the summit. I chose to return via the foot trail, which is very easily passable but necessitated an additional 20 minute snowshoe back up to the saddle to recover my skis and pack. On the other hand, the ski down from the saddle to the pond was great, and in itself might justify a trip to this area since the views on the way down were also terrific.

I spent a cold and windy Saturday night comfortably ensconced in a snow hole under a Betamid tarp-tent. The campsite is large and very easily accessible, with good access to water at the pond outlet (under the bridge, but careful not to fall in from the steep banks!). I had hoped to have a campfire, which is legal with snow on the ground, but it was just too windy.

The next day nothing happened. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!