For the past six years we have been canoeing sections of the Connecticut River from its source at the New Hampshire-Canada border toward its mouth on Long Island Sound. Each year we pick up where we left off the previously – so this year we launched our canoes just below Bellows Falls, and paddled three days to the first take-out inside Massachusetts. As a result, we have completed the entire journey of the river through New Hampshire and Vermont! We’ve been fortunate to follow the string of campsites organized by the Connecticut River Paddlers’ Trail and their excellent map. This year we paddled through a beautiful section of river, with good weather, albeit with some strong headwinds. We passed the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant (now being decommissioned), and the city of Brattleboro, and portaged around Vernon Dam. Continue reading River trip – to Massachusetts!
I enjoy hiking for the mix of natural beauty, physical challenge, and the fellowship of dear friends. I was lucky enough to have all three components this weekend as I completed the New England 67 (NE67) and the Northeast 111. Read on for the full story and check out the photos! Continue reading Katahdin and the Northeast 111/115
During an August visit I made five trips to the west end of Kiawah Island to watch the bottlenose dolphins and their “strand-feeding” behavior. I got lucky on two days, with repeated displays of this behavior, in which a pod of dolphins herd fish toward shore and then, in a burst of activity, leap on shore to eat the captive fish. The pelicans are aware of this behavior too, and eagerly await an opportunity to snatch the jumping fish. One pelican, in this sequence of images, had trouble swallowing his catch!
See the photo gallery.
The guidebook describes this route as the “most difficult along the A.T. [Appalachian Trail] in Maine”, and after hiking this section, I can certainly see why. It is incredibly rugged and steep – and we managed to avoid the tough conditions that might have come with rain: slipping down wet trails, and fording high-water streams.
Andy and I set out to backpack the A.T. from Route 4 (near Rangeley) to Route 27 (near Stratton), bagging eight four-thousand-footer peaks along the way. It was an ambitious five-day, four-night plan, part of my goal to complete the NE111. We had a great time, good weather, nice views, and I succeeded in bagging all eight peaks – but with a twist at the end. Read on, and be sure to check out the photo gallery.
Just back from a brief family vacation in Yosemite National Park. Somehow, I’d never managed to visit this gem of the park system, and have long been eager to do so. John is interning in silicon valley this summer so it provided the perfect excuse for the rest of us to hop out there to spend three days in the park. We were fortunate to have clear, sunny weather throughout – though it was hot (over 90° every day) and crowded. It was nonetheless a great place for me to test a new batch of camera gear. Read on for the full story – and photos! Continue reading Yosemite
After a busy spring term at Dartmouth I decided to take advantage of clear skies and a clear calendar to hike Mount Washington. As I drove to the mountains, I could see that every mountain in New Hampshire was in the clear… except one. A persistent cloud snuggled the summit of Mount Washington. I headed up the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail at 7:15am, and intermittent views ahead confirmed this cloud was stuck on the summit. Still, the trail passes many beautiful waterfalls and rocky formations, and I saw only one other hiker in the early morning chill. I reached Lakes of the Clouds, and the AMC hut, in brilliant morning sunshine.
Fortunately, as I scrambled up into the cloud, it dissipated, and I reached the summit at 10am under sunny skies. After exploring there for a while, I headed toward the northern Presies (Clay, Jefferson, Adams, Madison), to each of which still clung small patches of snow. I hopped over the Cog Railway tracks, skirted Clay to the west, and dropped down the Jewell Trail to my starting point. [It’s amazing how pleasant the Jewell Trail can be in good conditions – i.e., when it’s not dark, 30 degrees and raining, postholing through an ice crust; but that’s another story.]
See more photos.
climb: 4.5mi; 2h40 including stopover at hut; 3800’ gain
descent: 5.0mi; 2h08.
It was a great winter – once it got started, there was deep snow and many days with outstanding conditions. Unfortunately, I didn’t have much time to get out and enjoy it. Still, I managed to get in one fantastic hike every month.