East Osceola and Mt. Osceola - December 29, 2020


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Rhody Seth

Active member
Dec 18, 2015
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Charlestown, RI
At the end up December I spent a couple days hiking win the Whites. Lafayette and Lincoln on Day 1, the Tripyramids on Day 2 and an overnight hammock attempt on Night 2. That left me at the Greeley Pond trailhead early on the morning of Dec 27th with the intention of hiking the Osceolas.

Knee pain cropped up during my descent on Day 2 and as I brought my hammock gear back to the car in the early hours of Day 3 the discomfort was still there. Not sure if I wanted to attempt the final hike, I crawled into a sleeping bag in my car for a couple hours, waking up when the first other car pulled in. I wasn't feeling the hike but it was hard to pull the plug when I was already in the parking lot. Another factor was that I was attempting to complete a goal I set for myself of 300k feet of elevation gain in 2020. I was just over 3000 feet shy at this point and didn't relish the idea of cramming in ton of hill repeats over the last two days of the year. I could instead wrap up the goal with a final hike in NH.

The other fella was there for 30 minutes or so before his buddy showed up and then the two of them began their day's preparations in earnest. They gave me the gumption to crawl out of my bag and prepare myself as well. The two friends set out with climbing gear. I wondered where they were climbing? I left soon after and followed their tracks but at the intersection they kept going towards Greeley Pond. My knee wasn't feeling that bad at that point and it was an easy decision to continue the hike. I would be the first to hike up the Osceolas that day and the inch of snow that fell during the night was welcome.

I had read a recent report that indicated that the trail wasn't too icy and proved to be the case. Microspikes worked well throughout, though there were a few steep sections that were a little tricky. The chimney bypass wasn't an issue. It was forecast to be in the single digits and fairly windy - it didn't end up being that cold but the wind was certainly nippy. Luckily there were only a few sections along the ridge where you really felt it. And the summit of Mt. Osceola was sheltered from the wind. The sun came out and it was lovely there. In fact this was the only day of the three where I had views from the summit (though I did have some great views on my descent from Lafayette). Unfortunately my footage on Mt. Osceola was corrupted however I did get a nice time lapse.

A nice fellow reached the summit of Mt. Osceola not long after me. He was over 400 peaks into his grid and we had a nice chat before I decided to make the return trip. I passed a few solo hikers making there way up as well as a couple with their dog. There is a slide section on the way down from East Osceola that was a little tricky descending. Halfway down I heard a beeping sound and discovered a phone in the snow. Someone was calling the phone so I answered it but I was somewhat frazzled and didn't get much other than that the person was calling their boss. Unsure what to do, I ended up bringing the phone with me. A little while later I encountered two fellows. I asked them to take on a Quest- I was sure the phone belonged to one of the hikers I passed. They agreed to take the phone and show it to those hikers when they encountered them. Thank you again fellows - I hope you were able to reunite the phone with its owner.

By the time I reached the car I was certainly feeling the three days of hiking in my legs and happy to begin my journey home. I'm very pleased that with this hike I hit 300,000 feet of vertical gain for the year. Since I live in Rhode Island believe me when I say that this required a lot of hill repeats to make it happen. I was happy to hit this goal but I have no desire to repeat it!

Great video and adventure as always Seth. Glad you hit goal.

I have a knee MRI scheduled for next week: pain on descent.
Great video and adventure as always Seth. Glad you hit goal.

I have a knee MRI scheduled for next week: pain on descent.

Thanks for watching and sorry you are also having knee pain. I'm still dealing with mine after several weeks. Attempting to run on it only reaggravated it so I'm attempting to take it easy and let it heal up. Those injuries don't heal up as fast as they use to.