It was back to Crawford Notch Sunday to settle some unfinished business. Luke and I attempted a Willey Range traverse (Mts. Tom, Field and Willey) on July 4 but cut things short after running into a thunderstorm on top of Tom.
Luke stayed home, having summited Field (his first 4,000-footer) last summer. I set out alone from Crawford Station early in the morning, hoping to bag Field and Willey. For once, things went as planned.
Looking down at the Mt. Washington Resort from the summit of the 4,340-foot Mt. Field. Not sure why the shot is so washed out.
Looking back at Mt. Tom.
Making a new friend on Mt. Field. The grey jays aren't shy, especially if you have a fist full of trail mix. This photo made Luke insanely jealous.
After a 2.8-mile climb to the top of Field, it's another 1.4 down-and-up miles to Willey.
The dramatic, breathtaking summit of Willey (4,285 feet). They should put it on postcards. Seriously, it's less exciting than it looks in the photo.
There are, however, some nice views from an outlook a short distace away. Thanks to the nice hikers from Hanover, N.H., for offering to shoot the photo. After sharing notes on trails up Moosilauke, we headed in different directions. They were headed straight down Willey. I had what for me was the toughest part of my hike -- down Willey then back up Field before returning to Crawford Notch. That last climb up Field is tiring and feels a little beside the point -- I mean, I already summited, right?
Tough guy stops whining about the second ascent of Field long enough to snap a self-portrait at the top. From there, it's all downhill to the car (and the AMC's coin-operated shower at Crawford Depot, for which the inside of my car is eternally grateful).
Distance: 8.4 miles
Vertical gain: 3,100 feet.
Time on trail: @ 6 hours, 50 minutes, including rest stops and lunch with the grey jays.
Road trip music for the ride home: The Replacements, Don’t Tell a Soul; Bob Mould, Body of Song; Cross Canadian Ragweed, Purple; The Hoodoo Gurus, Crank; Drive By Truckers, The Dirty South.
It was a long drive back to Cape Ann through summer Sunday traffic, but it felt good to bag multiple peaks for a change.