View Full Version : The Next Step Is...

05-03-2005, 09:19 AM
This year, after a successful time at the huts last year, my wife has committed to trying a couple of backpacking trips with me. Given that my chances at hooking her will be limited and that I have not done a ton of backpacking in recent years, can I ask for some suggestions as to where would be a good place to go in the Whites?

I am thinking the Great Gulf and Pemi would be nice places, along with Ethan Pond. Ideally, I would like a nice views/not too difficult of a hike trip where she can enjoy herself immensely and thus want to go every weekend :D

Thanks in advance...

05-03-2005, 12:59 PM
Interesting question, and a very difficult one, as it is hard sometimes to judge someone else's desires and interests.... anyways, something that comes to mind is the hike towards Guyot from the end of the Sugarloaf campground road (Zealand trailhead??), it is an easy hike to the hut, following that it is a steep hike up onto the plateau, (45 min or so) where there are amazing views from above a sheer cliff to the east across the U shaped valley towards Tom, and the Presidentials, etc...., if still have energy the walk to Guyot is not difficult, I find Guyot nice due to its difference from the other peaks, it is a low bump (like a large sloping field) with 360 deg. views of lafayette, garfield, etc....

A nice part of that hike would be the ability to see many of the other potential hikes that await you. The one downside is that this would be an in and back.

I did this hike a few years ago so pls correct me anyone if any of my memories are incorrect.


Tramper Al
05-03-2005, 01:09 PM
If you really want to step gradually, the next level after huts might be a self service hut like Carter Notch, or an enclosed cabin like Cabot cabin. There are also several enclosed 'camps' on the Long Trail, across the river in Vermont.

Maybe after that, open shelter / lean-to and so on . . .

Edit: Great idea, MR. The RMC.

05-03-2005, 01:34 PM
Might I suggest one of the RMC’s facilities? If you take her to Gray Knob or Crag Camp you have the added advantage of not having to carry too much weight, yet the advantage of being just below tree line. After reaching camp, which is a quick 3 ˝ hour climb to Gray Knob and a 20 minute extra hike to Crag Camp via Lowe’s Path, you can saunter up to the ridge at a leisurely pace. You can then return to the hut and enjoy a nice meal and pleasant conversation with the other hikers.

If, however, you prefer to “rough it” you can hike to the Perch and pitch a tent and have the same advantage of being close to tree line for the evening. I recently took a friend to Crag Camp for the first time about a month ago, and although the trip to the hut was a disaster, for reasons I will not go into at this time, she absolutely loved the hut and has vowed to return this summer.

05-03-2005, 01:42 PM
I would actually suggest something like Nauman tentsite UNLESS you don't want a lot of people/crowds. The reasons why I would suggest Nauman are:

1. Short, relatively easy hike up the Crawford Path
2. A Hut nearby, where they usually let you fill your water bottles and you could probably get away with using the indoor "bathroom"/privy
3. Quick dayhikes without a big pack to Pierce and Jackson
4. The oppurtunity to get a bottomless bowl of soup at the Hut or leftover baked goods.
5. Tables to sit at and hang out indoors during non-meal times
6. Relatively easy bailout back to the car if she ought to hate it

All of these things make Nauman tentsite a good place to take the next step away from the Hut while still having some of the Hut luxuries available.

The BIG downside to this is that because the Hut is so close, you will have a lot of people around though they tend not to venture too far into the campsite area.


05-03-2005, 02:00 PM
I've gone through this with both wife & daughter. I think Sli's idea re Nauman is a GREAT one, makes for a nice easy walk to Pierce/Ike. Also think Ethan Pond would be good (could start at Arethusa Falls and go out to Highland Center via Willey next day), as would Guyot from Zealand (w/ a very light pack). However, i would NOT do the Gulf with her, too far in and the climbs to ridgeline are very tough. Whatever you choose I think the best thing you can do is keep it to a night or two, go slow, let her carry a very light pack and get to a place with a shower quickly after you're done. Have fun! :D :D :D