Jen and I went hiking up Mount Wachusett yesterday. The phrase "Thanks! I needed that!" came to mind!
I have been straight out with work and Scouts. I also decided to give up alcohol for Lent. While I am not a heavy drinker, an occasional drink at the end of the day is relaxing.
So here is my hike report for my virtual diary.
The day was unseasonably warm (60s) for mid-March. We had lots of rain over the past weekend. The trails still had a lot of snow, but there was also a lot of water. We went up the north side of Wachusett Mountain. The hike took about 1:45 to get to the summit and about 1:05 to get down.
The summit only had two other people, though we did see more hikers on the trail both up and down. The auto road was still covered in snow, so that and the trail snow probably cut down on the typical crowds at the top.
Probably the most amusing thing to me was a few skiers actually stared at us like we were strange animals as we walked up and down the hill. Apparently this was totally foriegn to those accustomed to riding a lift and skiing down!
I brought my new (gift) hiking stick, and Jen was sorry she did not have one so we cut one from a fallen branch. We both wished we had taken our hiking poles with baskets to keep from sinking in the snow. It may have been a good idea to have cleats as well, but we didn't slip much. The snow was mostly slushy, not icy. I ended up with some very wet boots, which leaked to my feet.
I would recommend this set of trails again: Bolton Pond > Old Indian > Semuhenna > Up Summit Road (to summit), though I would note the Up Summit Road has a switch back that is not indicated on the trail map which made it longer than the map would show. For our decent, we took the Trails: Old Indian > West Side > Sumuhenna > Old Indian > Bolton Pond. We took the Semuhenna up and down to avoid crossing the ski trails.
To plan for Washington, I think we should hike Monadnock, Greylock, and Lafayette. This should be an ascending level of difficulty that will build us up to Washsington.