Presi Traverse 7/11/12

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New member
Oct 7, 2003
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Colden from Marcy Dam pre-Irene
With a beautiful week of weather on our vacation week of 7/8, the best day looked to be Wed 7/11. My wife knew my desire to solo traverse the Presi Range, so with her blessing and goodbye kiss at 5:30 at the Applachia TH, I was off and I hoped to see her around 12 hours later at the Webster-Jackson TH near the Highland Center. It was a quick ascent to Madison Hut where the previous evening’s occupants were packing up to leave. Up and down Madison in no time. I was passed on my descent by an athletic looking fellow who bounded up the rocks with his camera. He mentioned he was doing a Presi traverse also. Shortly after my summitting of Adams, up he came via the Star Lake trail. I had to introduce myself and soon I was shaking hands with the legend, Tim Seaver. We both headed off towards Jefferson and every now then he would stop, set up his tripod for a quick shoot, and off he would go. The traverse across the ridge on Gulfside above the Jefferson Ravine was amazing but the eyes had to focus on the trail or else. Up Jefferson to a small crowd around 11:00, a little behind schedule but it was such a gorgeous day I really didn’t want to rush it. Tim kept going and he was soon out of sight. Across the lawn and up Clay for my lunch break, probably the best lunchtime view I have ever had and with no one else there! (good and bad) Continuing on to Washington and the view down into the Great Gulf was awesome! Up along the cog railway and one was coming down as I hiked by. On the upper flanks of Washington I met two women researchers from the Univ of Guelph (Canada) who were capturing for marking and releasing White Mountain Arctic butterflies. I talked with them for a few minutes - interesting stuff! Onto Washington’s summit cone, the crowds, the noise…yuck…made a quick stop and down to the LOC Hut. At the hut I refilled with water and read the poster about the Arctic and Fritillery butterflies. On Monroe it was now after 2:00pm, definitely behind schedule but I didn’t care. This overwhelming feeling that I didn’t want this magnificent day to end overcame me until my descent of Monroe and my screaming quads knocked reality back into my head. However, there it was, an Arctic butterfly! I had better report this to my new friends, this could be a research breakthrough!? Coming off of Little Monroe I met “Foot”, an AT SOBO. She seemed to be starving for conversation so I obliged. She was behind some hikers she was previously with so at this point she was going alone. Great and funny conversation made the time fly by. We split up when I went up Eisenhower for another beautiful view back from where I have come. When I descended to the Crawford Path from Ike, there was Foot again. I wished her the best again and picked up the pace toward Pierce. At that moment I realized I needed to leave her some trail magic so I left her a small pile of goodies from my pack. Nothing special but hopefully appreciated. Pierce to Mizpah and the legs were getting fatigued. The trek over to Jackson sucked like Tim said it would although I continued a good pace to the summit. The descent however was as I expected, rough trail and rough on my quads. A slow pace but I finally made it down the TH and my waiting wife (and support team :D) 13h45m after I started. She had made firends with two AT SOBOers, a couple who needed a ride back from Highland Center to their campsite further down the notch at the AT crossing. We took them both out to dinner with us in Bartlett – now that’s trail magic for all three of us! In summary, it was not only to experience the Presi Range in one day but it was bonus to see it in its grandeur on likely the best weather day this summer. It was an awesome experience and certainly a lifetime memory. The photos never seem to do it justice but I am glad to be able to share them with friends and family so they can see what this is all about, and also for the VFTT community who can appreciate what a day it was.

Photos - also includes Kinsman & Cannon photos from 7/9/12 tagged on the end - enjoy all 93!
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Awesome post! The one day Presi traverse has been a dream of mine for a long time and it is great to see someone making it happen.

What kind of training did you do to be ready for this epic hike? Also what kind of food worked for you to keep you moving for that long?

Congratulations! What is your next goal?
Gritter, I run regularly and workout and that provides the necessary fitness. The mileage was ok, it's the rocky and rough trail conditions that slowed me down, aside from the awesome views. No special food, energy bar snacks, sandwich for lunch, 3 liter camelbak, one Gu pack. Three huts plus the Wash summit so logistics is no concern. I did ADK Great Range traverse in 2010, and I would like to do a Pemi Loop next.

Willie, yes I miss my hiking partner and son. He is proudly defending our country. Semper Fi
Thanks for the photos. Looks like I need to revisit to catch the spectacular views!! We enjoyed the terrain ... and the whipping rain...even w/o the views.
Great to meet you on such a singularly spectacular day in the Prezzies. It really doesn't get much better than that!