Sunday River Whitecap Maine

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VFTT Supporter
Sep 3, 2003
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Gorham NH
A friend and I did a hike up Sunday River Whitecap today, Its definitely stick season in Grafton Notch but that means the woods are wide open. We took the very well established maintainers route off the logging road north of Screw Auger Falls. It has been several years since I last did this route, what was a tunnel through raspberry bushes is now a fine walk through maturing woods. It definitely can not be called a bushwhack anymore except tor lack of signage. Driving up Grafton Notch, the summits were white. It was cold and bright with stiff breeze from the west as we broke out on the summit. We barebooted up to the Grafton Loop trail but as we started ascending the rocks were covered with wet ice and then just plan ice so we switched to microspikes. The views from the summit were hard to beat, Saddleback and Abraham both had broad patches of white which made them easy to pick out. The views were 360 degrees with the whites out in the clear. I didnt have full winter gear but definitely had few layers on. Sunday River Ski area is definitely running the guns. We didnt spend a lot ot time on the summit as the stiff breeze and cold weather was not noticeable, we did a steady downhill until we got past the turn off to the maintainers path before it started to warm up.

Sunday River Whitecap is such a gem, the views beat many of the 52 with a VIew (but its in Maine) and using the maintainers path makes for a short hike compared to the Grafton Loop Trail. There is no pretense in hiding the maintainers path anymore. I think GPS tracks are floating around the web for those who might be worried about routefinding.

Driving back we stopped at the Pie Lady's main store, no pies but whoopie pies and maple cream cookie sandwiches.
I've only been there via the GLT, but SRWC used to be a great summit to enjoy alone as it wasn't on a list and most folks weren't aware of the shortcut. Social media has ruined that. There are cars parked at the highway many days now when I go through. On my Fall loop I was treated to a babbling group who talked non-stop for 45 minutes. Within a minute of them leaving another guy showed up so I abondoned the summit to find some peace in the woods.