Todayís adventure brought us back to Mount Jefferson for the second time. 10 more times for the Grid on this oneÖI donít think so! We took the Caps Ridge Trail, mainly because it sounded interesting and it didnít let us down with WOW factor. The first time we hiked Jefferson with Monroe and Washington, that was a long day.
The trailhead is located on Jefferson Notch Road and is the highest trailhead in the White Mountain coming in at 3008í in elevation. The hike itself is roughly 2.5 miles one way with an elevation gain of 2700í. We got there at 7:30AM and started our hike. We were surprised to see quite a few cars in the lot at that time. There was a group that had went up at 2:30AM and they were just getting back down when we got there (Power to them, I was fast asleep at that hour ).
The trail starts out on bog bridges and is in the woods until the first views at the Potholes (Whirlpool Ledge.) We did our video clips on how they got there, enjoyed the views then headed out. It wasnít long until we hit the first Cap. Thatís when the trail became fun? Actually yes, it did become fun. The Caps provided us with great views. When we saw people going up the second Cap from the distance, the steeper one, I started questioning myself as to whether we knew what we were doing. Looking at it, I was saying to myself, How are we going to get up that? Second question was, How are going to get back down that? To answer both was to do it and we did. I have to say that it looks more intermediating than it is. Coming down was actually easier. Still caution must be observed.
The third Cap was a piece of cake after the second one. Still tons of views were to be had, but also clouds started to move in around the summit. Now we were walking through a sea of rocks, known as Felsenmeer, very jagged and lying everywhere.
Washington was in the clouds for most of the time we could see in that direction. As Murphyís Law would have, we got the summit on Jefferson, it was clouded in. There were a few of us up there, including a couple finishing their 48th peak. We hung out for a bit to see it would clear up and it did a little, but we didnít want to wait all day to see if it would completely clear, so we headed back down, besides it was starting to get crowded up there.
The hike down was uneventful after the second Cap, but as I mentioned it ended up be easier to go down then I thought it would be. Overall it was a great day and now the Caps Ridge Trail is off the bucketlist.