Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Tippy Tops of New Hampshire


On Saturday, we hiked the Signal Ridge Trail to the top of 4700 foot Mt. Carrigain for my final New Hampshire 4000 footer climb.

I read a lot of mountain climbing books and blogs and it occurs to me that 4000 foot tall mountains aren't really that tall--Colorado climbers have their 14,000 foot club and Europeans have the Alps and don't even get me started on the Himalyas--but for we New Englanders who hit the trail near sea level, 4000 feet is the best we can do and doggone it, our trails are plenty hard enough for middle-aged weekend warriors like me! So yesterday on a picture perfect September day, we climbed up Mt. Carrigain. From the observation tower at the summit we could see 43 of the 48 peaks and we named them and remembered the climbs to reach their tops.

Ethan came up from Pennsylvania to share the hike. Charlie's sons Caleb and Jacob joined us, too. Net result of so much testosterone--I did not have to carry a backpack!

We ate our sandwiches on the summit and as we ate, I pointed out a beautiful gray jay keeping watch from a nearby spruce. He was so pretty and just weeks away from a long, long winter--so I gave in to temptation and shared a corner of my peanut butter and jelly with him.

13 comments:

Ruth said...

4000 feet sound like more than enough of a climb to me. I love the Gray Jay picture. We don't have them here in S. Ontario and yours appears as friendly as I have heard they can be.

rach :) said...

Glad you had a great day with some important people.

beth said...

what an amazing bird photo...wow wow wow !!!

Morning's Minion said...

I wasn't familiar with gray jays in New England. We encounter them in the mountains here and they are called "camp robbers." Never thought I would miss blue jays--noisy, greedy birds, but I would welcome their bold color during a WY winter.

Elizabeth said...

Exquisite photo of the gray jay! Thanks for the enjoyable post.

Jayne said...

What a photo Beth! Looks like you and that jay became fast friends! Glad it was a beautiful day for the hike and that the testosterone would not allow you to carry a load. ;c) Congratulations!!

Beth said...

Loved this! Congrats on your accomplishments!

I'm glad to get back and check up on you - I'd missed the entire vacation and the end of the summer! Glad you seem to be doing well...

Charlene said...

Congratulations on all this high achievement. Saying you remember all those other climbs you could see is plain mind-boggling for me.I know that was a very memorable day and am sure all those guys were proud to be keeping up with you. Charlene

warriormom said...

Congratulations on finishing well!! and in such good company. You're inspiring and motivating my sister and I (both sides of 50)...although we're leaning toward "52 with a view!"

bookbabie said...

Sounds like a great way to end September Beth!

Cindy said...

Congratulations for completing the 4000 footers in NH. Yes, and what an amazing picture of the Jay, the icing on the summit!

Tom Ryan said...

Beth, sorry so late to respond. Congratulations to you! I've enjoyed following your journey.

We'll do our best to return the favor when Ruthie gets here as she wants to emulate the little dog she loves so much and do all 48 this winter. That's a tall order for a gal from Texas who has never seen a New England winter.

I've shared some of your posts with her and she enjoyed watching the most recent steps of your quest.

Congrats again!

Larry said...

Awesome Gray Jay photo! I've seen them but never had one eat from my hand like that.I once climbed a small mountain in New Hampshire with my sister.I thought I was in much better shape than her but I was quite winded when I got to the top and she was fine. When I checked in my backpack I discovered why.I had put 30 pounds of weights in it to train for the climb locally-(not knowing how hard climbing a mountain would be)-and forgot to take them out.