Date of Hike: Nov. 13, 2012

Trail Conditions: The first half of Tuckerman Ravine Trail was pretty normal as one would expect on a wet day: A little muddy in places, but mostly a wide and rocky road up the mountain. No significant sign of ice or snow down low, and minimal sign of snow all the way to the summit. I noted three blowdowns before Hermit Lake, but they'd already been dealt with. In the ravine itself I encountered easy footing, but as the morning progressed, the temperatures dropped, and elevation was gained, a coating of ice was forming making footing a little slick. It was really quite windy and sleeted and snowed for a while, but it only left a dusting if that. It was pretty chilly on the summit. Lion Head Trail was pretty much more of the same, except in reverse. A little ice on the rocks and a dusting, but that was only at elevation. I did note a few dropped branches down lower, maybe a blowdown, but the trail had been cleared. No crossings to contend with today.

Special Equipment Used: Microspikes were really helpful with traction from about halfway up the headwall to the summit and to just below the lion head rocks. Trekking poles were helpful with balance and to help keep me upright in the wind. Gaiters weren't really needed today, but mittens were nice. I could have used a face mask and goggles because of the sleet and ice pelting me in the high winds but I managed.

Comments: Hiked this one solo as I had planned on hiking Isolation, but something came up and the person I was going to hike and car-spot with couldn't make it. Much to my surprise, and delight I suppose, I seemingly had all of Mt. Washington to myself -- and on the Tuckerman Ravine Trail no less. That's got to be unusual.

Mike "Tramper" Cherim
Nottingham NH