Elephant 7/26/08

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  1. #1

    Elephant 7/26/08

    Date(s) Hiked: 7/26/08

    Trails(s) Hiked: none, this is a bushwhack!

    Total Distance: 2.8 miles, 1150'

    Difficulty: not physically strenuous, but good 'whacking skills mandatory

    Conditions: wet, muddy in spots

    Special Required Equipment: map, compass

    Trip Report:

    Well, let's keep it simple. Una_dogger, Leaf, and I drove up through Andover, Maine, past the AT crossing on South Arm Road, then took the old logging road to the end of the drivable portion, parking around 2600'. With the sun out and a beautiful view of the peak in front of us, we followed the path through the grasses that have grown up along the higher section of the road until reaching the cairn and herd path.

    We came to a junction where our beta said to go left. Of course, left was brushed off and right had pink flagging. Well, we explored one route and decided we didn't like it, came back, and went the other way. The herd path vanished and we pretty much made our own way. Una_dogger would find bits of paths here and there but overall it was just a task of going up, and managing to avoid the old clearcut areas which are now overgrown with spruce and hiding nasty blowdowns.

    We crossed a few old skid roads, climbed a steep pitch, and came out into the open woods of the broad summit. We found a clear herd path up high, as everyone converged to the same place, and there at the top was the canister. We were 90 minutes from the car.

    It didn't take much to read the register - it was a new notebook, placed there at the start of July. We put our own entries in, and started down. We decided to follow the herd path(s) as best we could, as in some of the nastier stretches a treadway could make a world of difference. We sprang from path to path as we descended, keeping ourselves in the correct general direction each time a path diverged to someplace else, and had a nearly-clear walk the entire way back to the car, taking just under an hour.

    We ran some errands, then did some paddling, and finally enjoyed an awesome evening of fine friends and live music. If only all hikes ended like that!

    #97 of my NE100, #78 of Una_dogger's NE100.

    A brief photo album is here.
    Last edited by MichaelJ; Jul 27, 2008 at 10:26 PM.
    Skiing combines outdoor fun with knocking down trees with your face. - Dave Barry
    Waterville 11/30; Loon 12/7; Cannon 12/13, 1/17, 2/23; Sugarloaf 12/20, 21-22; Bretton Woods 1/3; Jay Peak 1/24-25; Heavenly 2/9; Squaw Valley 2/10-2/11; Wachusett 3/3; Sunday River 3/7-8

  2. #2
    nice lush pictures of the summit. looks beutiful

  3. #3
    bigbog's Avatar
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    Elephant....

    Nice pics MJ. Pretty amazing how quickly an area(cutting road) can rebound....maybe not with same growth...at first, but in time....
    SteveD

  4. #4
    Oh yeah. I looked at the area with Google Earth and was amazed at how logged it had been, that the "striations" we saw were indeed signs of a prior harvest, and it's all coming back strong.

    The only drawback is to the hiker as it's coming back with thick undergrowth, unlike old forest, which is like the summit: open and green with ferns and moss. I put on my safety glasses at one point for "spruce-dozer" mode.
    Skiing combines outdoor fun with knocking down trees with your face. - Dave Barry
    Waterville 11/30; Loon 12/7; Cannon 12/13, 1/17, 2/23; Sugarloaf 12/20, 21-22; Bretton Woods 1/3; Jay Peak 1/24-25; Heavenly 2/9; Squaw Valley 2/10-2/11; Wachusett 3/3; Sunday River 3/7-8

  5. #5
    bigbog's Avatar
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    ...agree...

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelJ View Post
    .......The only drawback is to the hiker as it's coming back with thick undergrowth, unlike old forest, which is like the summit: open and green with ferns and moss. I put on my safety glasses at one point for "spruce-dozer" mode.
    Yep, agree with you 100% on that. The non-pseudo_clearcut softwooded areas are a lot more enjoyable...

    SteveD

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