Date: September 10, 2016

Where: Mt Washington, NH

Conditions: Sunny AM, clouds and light rain after 3 PM, summit temps in the low 50’s. Approximately 9.5 mile loop taking the Ammonoosuc Trail up and the Jewell trail down. Elevation gain of 3700+ feet.

Over Labor Day weekend in preparation for our Mt Washington hike we did a few shorter hikes on the Long Trail in VT – Molly Starks Balcony which is a steep 2.6 mile round trip and Mt Abraham which is 5.7 miles.
I had never hiked Mt Washington before and we picked a relatively good weather day for our trip. We went up the west side on the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail starting around 6:30 AM. The trail starts off with a relatively gentle incline until about the 2 mile mark when you pass the Gem Pool and from there it’s a steep, rocky climb until you reach the Lake Of the Clouds AMC hut at 3.1 miles. We were now above the treeline and took the 1.4 mile Crawford Path across the “rock pile” to reach the summit. Visibility on the west side of the mountain was outstanding while the east side was socked in with fog and clouds. We took the Gulf Side Trail to the Jewell trail on our descent. The views of the Great Gulf were spectacular. Above the treeline the temperature dropped dramatically and the wind picked up and you can appreciate how challenging hiking would be under less than ideal conditions. It took a while to get below the tree line on the Jewell trail and the decent was much less steep and rocky compared to or ascent. We finished our hike around 4 PM. Overall it was a great day with good weather and spectacular views.

Gem Pool:

Summit view from Amonosooc trail:

Clouds rolling in from the southeast: