End of the Year in the Whites: Moriah and Cherry Pond


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Jan 15, 2013
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Vernon, Conn.
Meadowsweet and I spent the tail end of the year in Gorham. On Sunday the 30th I climbed Moriah. On Monday the 31st we both hiked out to Cherry Pond.

Sunday: Moriah

I hiked Moriah by the Carter-Moriah Trail. The trail was hard packed snow; I was on microspikes the whole way. It wasn't very cold at all, and there was no wind until the very summit, where there was only a slight breeze. Not surprisingly, I met a lot of other hikers during the day.

The air was clear at the top, giving sharp views all around. On the way down it started getting hazy, resulting in rays from the sun shooting down into the notch between the Carters and the Presidentials.

Moriah was number 61 (out of 115) in my project to reclimb the NE111 in my 60s.

Monday: Cherry Pond

Meadowsweet wanted to hike, but is not fully recovered from her ascent of Cascade, so I took her somewhere which is both flat and has great views, Slide Brook Trail and the Presidential Range Rail Trail. These are part of the Cohos Trail, and I had been there during my through hike in the summer of 2017, but not since then.

There were a few inches snow on the ground, but even where we were breaking trail we were fine with me in microspikes and Meadowsweet bare booting.

The first part of Slide Brook Trail is much different in the winter than in the summer, when it's a thick meadow. The second part of SBT goes along the edge of a swamp, which is easier when the water is frozen.

The Presidential Range Rail Trail, which was most of the hike, is an old rail bed, very flat and mostly straight. We took it to Cherry Pond, where there's views of Starr King and Waumbek to the north and the Presidentials to the southeast. Then we went back. When we got to Slide Brook Trail again Meadowsweet wanted to continue on the PRRT, so we decided she would hike to the road (115A) along the PRRT and I would take the SBT back to the car, and then go pick her up.

When I got to the intersection with 115A a woman we had passed earlier was arriving, and I asked her if the woman I'd been with was far behind her. She answered that she hadn't seen her since she'd met the both of us. I was trying to figure out how that could be when she said, "Is that her?" and pointed to a figure far down the PRRT on the other side of the road. I ran after that person, and indeed it was Meadowsweet. She had arrived, and, misremembering the road she was aiming for as "115" and seeing a sign pointing the way to 115, had continued down the trail after waiting for a while. So there was a mixup, which almost caused a lot more headaches than it did. If I hadn't met that other woman, I would have hiked down the PRRT in the opposite direction to meet Meadowsweet, and not discovered that something was wrong until I'd arrived at SBT. Lessons learned: I should have given her my map, and she shouldn't have let her phone battery die (which is why I didn't just call her). Anyway, all's well that ends well.

Here are the pictures for Moriah.
Here are the pictures for Cherry Pond.



NE111 in my 50s: 115/115 (67/67, 46/46, 2/2)
NE111 in my 60s: 61/115 (48/67, 12/46, 1/2)
NEFF: 50/50; Cat35: 39/39; WNH4K: 40/48; NEHH 89/100
LT NB 2009; CT NB 2017

"I don't much care where [I get to] --" said Alice, "-- so long as I get somewhere," ...
"Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."
- Lewis Carroll