Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: Common Ground: A Hike In PA

  1. #1
    Senior Member Fisher Cat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    789

    Common Ground: A Hike In PA

    (First, a thanks to grouseking who, without knowing it, silently encouraged me with his own out-of-New-England-states Trip Reports, to try one of my own.)

    I have to swallow hard when I think of hiking outside my native state of NH. Perhaps its feelings of guilt or betrayal. I've often thought that if I have to drive over an hour to hike somewhere I might as well tack on another 6 and at least get to the Pemi. I call it exclusive devotion.

    The formulation of the hike turned out a bit strange as well. Originally it was to be myself, my wife, Klutzy Cat, her oldest sister and her husband too.(Who at this point remain Trail-Nameless)My wife fell ill and her sister had to work. So, it ended up being me and my sister-in-law's husband. I've learned something from having 5 sister-in-laws and that's that everyone dosen't always get along. Four of us husbands are from New England. One from MA, two from VT, and me from NH. So today I was to hike with, well, we'll call him Mark for the sake of anonymity. I haven't always gotten along with Mark, its sometimes been a bit rocky, for varying reasons mind you, some of which have been my fault. We've often hiked as a foursome, but I've never hiked with him alone. I wasn't sure how it would go. Then I found that this hike would complete his goal of the trail system at Hawk Mt. in Kempton. I figure this is good advice whether or not you are hiking:

    Hawk Mt is located about 2mi. off the AT. For those familiar with the AT in this area it is connected by the Skyline Trail. I have found that when hiking in PA in order to gain altitude, you often have to lose it first. Here's looking back two minutes into the hike:



    It was to be a 5mi trek, but Mark is happy about it because he is using hikes like this to prep for the Whites next year. He hiked Mt W as Boy Scout, and this year we did Pine Mt together, all of this leading up to some 4000footers in NH next year and a ever-so-youthful return to Mt W. He kicked smoking, is watching his diet, and using hiking to complete it all. The woods here are mostly oak, laurelwood, and rhododendron which seem to grow in strips:


    As we hiked we talked about how great it is to have some family members who hike. We talked about shared concerns of aging parents, aging teenagers (we both have daughters), and aging selves. For all the differences in our upbringing and experiences we never had a lag in conversation. Unifying hopes and fears. Childhood and parental laughs. Mark huffed and puffed to the junction of his goal, and it was met:


    As we moved across a craggy vein, the lichen recalled some in NH, not the same of course, but close. A mist moved in by late afternoon:

    We found our thoughts sifting together and looking at next year. Though its some time from now, talking about it makes it seem closer. Their goal is to join us on one of our many annual trips back home to NH. The late June-early July week perhaps, and the always habitual long Labor Day weekend. They know they can hike with us if they want, or go by themselves, but at the end of each day we will meet at a common spot, common perhaps, in more ways than one.

    Isn't hiking grand? Indeed it is. It throws aside prejudice, pre-judgement, and all seeming differences. Yes, hiking and spending time with others often gives us the abiltity to look at ourselves and the unspoken changes we make in our thinking and presumption.

    As a bonus, toward the end of the hike we came to this spot:


    We caught up with two hikers in their early to mid-20's. They'd left about 15 minutes before us on the same route but had taken a short-cut to get to the same spot we were going. Mark and I had gone the long way. But here we caught up to them and Mark was quite happy about it, and I was happy for him.

    This is usually a pretty busy spot, full of avian observers. But, with everyone gone because it was late we sat back and watched a field-grey blanket come down around us:


    Fine synopsis of life, is it not? Ups, downs, then cresting out-somewhere, somehow, and at some point- on top. Its nice to see that in a place not too common to me, at a time of year when we see most things around us dying or going into hibernation, that hiking, yes, good old hiking, helps us realize that within us, some things continue to grow.
    " by reason of much foule weather and Extreme Bad Woods to travel in.."- From the letter of my great uncle Samuel Willard (accompanied by my grandfather Henry) to Governor Dummer on August 16, 1725, explaining the reason for his return, being instructed to "range all the country", of the Wawobadenik (White Mountains) July 19-August 16, 1725. I am a 13th generation New Englander and proud of it.

    LIVE FREE OR DIE - DEATH IS NOT THE GREATEST OF EVILS
    Gen. John Stark July 1809

  2. #2
    Senior Member gram's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    North of Boston, Avatar, Rocky Mt NP
    Posts
    180
    Nice! Thanks for posting.
    gram

  3. #3
    Senior Member grouseking's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Lebanon, NH Avatar: Philosopher?
    Posts
    2,023
    Wow, that's a haul for a hike (driving). I'm glad you enjoyed it, and glad to be of inspiration. It looks pretty rocky along that section in PA. Someday I'll get up there and do it.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Fisher Cat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    789
    grouseking, here is a link to map there if you ever want to make a go of it:

    http://hawkmountain.org/media/trailmap.pdf
    " by reason of much foule weather and Extreme Bad Woods to travel in.."- From the letter of my great uncle Samuel Willard (accompanied by my grandfather Henry) to Governor Dummer on August 16, 1725, explaining the reason for his return, being instructed to "range all the country", of the Wawobadenik (White Mountains) July 19-August 16, 1725. I am a 13th generation New Englander and proud of it.

    LIVE FREE OR DIE - DEATH IS NOT THE GREATEST OF EVILS
    Gen. John Stark July 1809

  5. #5
    Senior Member 1HappyHiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bethlehem, NH
    Posts
    1,976
    Hey Scott, I look forward to other Trip Reports from Pennsylvania. I find it refreshing to see photos and read about hiking adventures from other parts of the country.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fisher Cat
    I have to swallow hard when I think of hiking outside my native state of NH. Perhaps its feelings of guilt or betrayal.
    Scott, I don't think you should feel any guilt or betrayal by hiking outside of NH. Obviously, you'd prefer to be hiking in NH (who wouldn't?), but the NH mountains know that you'll always remain loyal to them, and so "they" don't feel an sense of disloyalty when you hike other mountains.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Jimmy Legs and Little D's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Baltimore, Maryland
    Posts
    643

    Thumbs up Hawk Mountain

    Thanks for posting your hike to Hawk Mountain as it is a noteworthy hiking area. It's been a good 10 years since our last hike there. We always found it a bit of a challenge before discovering the White Mountains. If you continue along the AT from Hawk Mountain there is an 11 mile rountrip hike to The Pinnacle, which is still on our "to do" list.

    Donna

  7. #7
    Senior Member adktyler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Saranac Lake, NY
    Posts
    633
    Nice report!! I'm glad that you're experiencing different parts of the North East!

Similar Threads

  1. Snow on the ground
    By peakbagger in forum Q&A - New England
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 12-19-2017, 08:51 AM
  2. Snow on Ground up north
    By peakbagger in forum Q&A - New England
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 10-26-2016, 09:13 PM
  3. lost ground pad between Bonds and LW
    By 1SlowHiker in forum Lost and Found
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-18-2015, 12:47 PM
  4. One More Pipe in the Ground Question
    By walker in forum Q&A - New England
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-08-2010, 04:19 PM
  5. VT ground cover input
    By ctsparrow in forum Q&A - New England
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 12-30-2006, 12:42 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •