With everything else that's been going on this summer our opportunities to get to NH have been more limited than usual and no extended stays other than the 4 day Seek the Peak weekend. Our current solution to this dilemma is to try to grab several day trips between now and the fall. I've got the good fortune to be able to take vacation days with last minute notice so we can hopefully plan good weather days as well. Yesterday certainly worked out perfectly as one of those days.
We left the house at 5:00 and were at the Mt Osceola trailhead on Tripoli Rd a little after 8:30. The air was cool, the sky was blue and sunny and it was about as good an August day for hiking in the Whites that you could ask for. We only saw a couple of others on the trail all the way to East Osceola and we had both summits to ourselves to enjoy in solitude. The hike was awesome, the views were spectacular and our plan to do a few more of these in the coming weeks were solidified! At 3:00 we were back at the car and ready to head home.
The drive home put a bit of a damper on our good spirits. We've avoided the weekday trips in the past because of not wanting to deal with the horrendous Boston traffic. On the last trip up in July we had finally realized that we could avoid Boston rush hour mess by using 495. Yesterday, not so much. There was an accident on the other side of 495 that had a rescue helicopter landed on the highway and traffic stopped in the other direction for over 10 miles. The rubbernecking traffic on our side wasn't much better. In the end it probably only cost us an extra 1/2 hour and we were home before 7:30. An aggravating end but not enough to ruin a fantastic day. Already thinking about another one of these next week...
Rocky trail heading up Mt Osceola
The reward on Mt Osceola summit. What incredible views!
Great way to spend a Thursday
The path ahead to East Osceola
Steep climb down the chimney bypass
Amazing views into the Pemi
On the summit of East Osceola. Not great views (OK, no views) but a nice spot to enjoy lunch in the dappled sunshine and cool breezes
Fun climb up the chimney on the way back
This poor little vole almost got squished when he ran across the trail under my feet. He ran in here and just sat there "being invisible".
The whole album is here: http://picasaweb.google.com/mtruman42/Osceolas81210#