Saturday, July 11, 2009
Charlie and I got up early, packed our packs, poured travel mugs of coffee and then drove the 2-1/2 hours to Waterville Valley, New Hampshire and the Mt. Tecumseh trailhead arriving exactly at 9:00 to meet his son Caleb who came up from Massachusetts to hike with us.
We laughed when we got out of the cars because we all had on identical outfits of tan hiking pants and black fleece pullovers. Caleb started hiking with us a couple of years ago. He was trying to quit smoking and was advised by his doctor to try doing activities that he would not ordinarily do. He called us up to see what we were doing that weekend because he was quite sure whatever we were up to was not what he would ordinarily do. We were going hiking up the Kinsmans and so he drove up and met us--chain smoking his last cigarettes as he drove the 3 hours. His smoking habit comes and goes but he has managed to hike 11 mountains with us and one on his own so he's on the way to completing his list, too. We just need to find him a nice, intelligent, attractive, funny, 20-something female hiking companion.
I really enjoyed the hike up Tecumseh--it was a mostly a moderate grade with some flat spots where we just walked through the woods. There were two super-steep stretches up the two summit cones. We reached the west summit first and then had to descend steeply and traverse another flat spot before heading up the summit cone of the main summit which comes in at 4003 feet above sea level. The view was nice, although I guess we missed the best viewpoint by not coming up from the ski area. Oh well, we'll have to go back some day. We ate our lunch on the top and looked over at the Tripyramids and recalled our hike there on a hot July day two years ago.
The hike down included re-navigating the steep section up to the west summit but from then on it was all downhill. Once we were to the car, I got my clean clothes out of the trunk and went looking for a sheltered area in the creek to clean up. The cold water sure did feel good--those cold water creek cool downs are the best part of a summer hike.
What's left in New Hampshire