View Full Version : Abraham, Spaulding and Sugarloaf

The Sikes
07-28-2015, 10:41 AM
Has anyone done these with a car spot? Does it matter which way you go? Last time I did them 2 seperate trips but thinking if I can spot a car this might be the way to go.

07-28-2015, 10:51 AM
I did these last year. I didn't do a car spot because it would've been too expensive to get two cars all the way up there. However, I would recommend doing Abraham first and then finishing with Spaulding and Sugarloaf. My experience was that Abraham was the hardest one of the three and felt surprisingly big given its elevation, with the pretty steep rocky sections. In contrast, Once you get to Spaulding it's extremely easy going across the ridge to Sugarloaf and then of course Sugarloaf is a ski area so the descent should be easy. It's a matter of personal preference but I'd rather get the tougher mountain completed first and then finish a long hike on the two easier peaks.

07-28-2015, 11:09 AM
I haven't done these as a traverse, but I do think that would be the preferable way to do them. If you aren't coming down the ski slopes off of Sugarloaf, there is a steep section (https://sdways01.smugmug.com/New-England-4K/Spaulding-Sugarloaf/i-38wnqpk) of trail as you get closer to the bottom. I didn't find it hard after doing an out and back of Spaulding and Sugarloaf, but it might be trickier if you are tired. You also have the river crossing just before Caribou Valley Road. There is a plank (https://sdways01.smugmug.com/New-England-4K/Spaulding-Sugarloaf/i-76nMTHg) across some rocks that is attached by a cable to keep it from washing away, but higher water could make it more interesting. One wouldn't want to get stuck here or have issues at the end of the hike.

Personally I didn't think Abraham was that difficult going up or down it, but I was also only doing that peak during the hike. I haven't done the section of trail between Spaulding and Abraham. If I were doing the traverse, I would personally want to start with Sugarloaf and work over to Abraham. But as I said, I haven't been on all sections of the trail. This opinion is partly due to the fact that I think the Sugarloaf summit is a bit lack luster with the buildings and I would prefer to end on Abraham which I think is a better summit.

Trail Boss
07-28-2015, 11:29 AM
Traversed the three from north to south in September 2014. Very enjoyable route and Abraham was my favorite.

We parked my friend's pickup at the Rapid Stream trail-head the previous night and started up Sugarloaf the next morning. I can't say hiking up a ski trail is my first choice but every now and then it's a nice variation; hard to beat the views of the Bigelows during the ascent. Oh and Rapid Stream Road makes the Caribou Valley Road seem like paved highway! My friend was ahead of me in his pickup and I was following in a CUV. After successfully dodging many potholes and avoiding rocks and swales, I stopped and inspected a "tank trap" (slight exaggeration). The culvert had been removed leaving behind a 2-3 foot deep trench across the road. Someone had backfilled it with birch trees to aid crossing it. I eased across those shifting trees and hoped for the best. No idea if the road has been improved since September; best not to expect a speedy run along Rapid Stream Road.

07-28-2015, 12:28 PM
Here are my 2 cents: The river crossings at the bottom of Abraham, where the bridges were washed out, are a pain in the neck. The first is a pretty easy rock-hop. My first step onto the rocks on Crossing # 2 resulted in a prompt dunking. The rock was the most slippery bugger I can ever recall. This is not the way you like to start the day. At least the camera survived and there were some dry socks in the pack. (And at least nobody was watching my graceful moves.) I recommend fording in bare feet or sandals. And in case it is not obvious from your planning, the trail immediately goes right, up along the river on the old road, once you are on the other side. Have a great trip.

07-28-2015, 05:08 PM
Road conditions are usually a function of logging activities. When we hiked this loop we indeed spotted a car at the Kingfield end where roads had recently been washed out making for a longer road walk and some of the road was so washed out that, in places, it resembled the river bed itself. Thanks to a referral from the Chamber of Commerce, we got a ride to the base Sugarloaf Mountain ski area where we began the hike.

07-28-2015, 06:31 PM
This past winter, we traversed up Sugarloaf (ski trail) and down Firewarden to Kingston. The crossings were frozen over, making life a bit easier. In summer, I did all three as an out-and-back from the CVR via the AT - walked out to Abraham and then hit Spauling and Sugarloaf on the return.

We came we saw we kicked ASS
CVR 4Ks in Winter Sugarloaf Spaulding Abraham Crockers Redington 1/2-3/15


07-29-2015, 09:14 AM
If you can't arrange a car spot, these three are a reasonable out and back from the ski area or the CVR. It's around 15-16 miles with about half the elevation gain in the first mile or two.