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View Full Version : Situated Between a Wildcat and a Baldface (06-Sep-2010)



1HappyHiker
09-07-2010, 10:14 PM
Looking at a topographic map, there is a 2,941 ft peak that is situated nearly due east of the Wildcat Ridge and nearly due west of North Baldface. It is unnamed on topographic maps, but some peak-baggers refer to this mountain as "West Peak, North Baldface". However, I think of it as simply West Baldface.

I decided to go to this little mountain not for peakbagging purposes, but rather because it looked like a spot to get some interesting views, particularly of the Baldfaces. My trek was launched from the end of East Branch Road (Jackson/North Conway area). I hiked northward along the East Branch Trail for several miles before turning eastward to follow old logging roads for another mile or so. Eventually, I left the logging roads and bushwhacked up the west slope of West Baldface. It was an easy whack through ferns, birch and other hardwoods.

There is no single spot on the summit where there is a 360 degree view, but views in all directions are available by moving around from spot to spot on the summit area.

Below are some photos from this trek.

Looking eastward toward the massive North & South Baldface Mountains

http://lh4.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TIZfZJkJ6bI/AAAAAAAAH2Q/lDZOn6x4qU4/s800/P1070102.JPG

Looking westward over Wildcat Ridge toward Mt. Washington (Slightly zoomed photo)

http://lh5.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TIZcwKfSboI/AAAAAAAAH1s/q3KJFOeoELk/s800/P1070084.JPG

Looking northward toward the rocky ridge of Mt. Moriah that extends into the Wild River Valley

http://lh4.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TIZcx6dGNFI/AAAAAAAAH1w/0x1sbmMuZFY/s800/P1070096.JPG

Looking southward toward peaks in the Sandwich Range and other surrounding mountains

http://lh4.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TIZcztDzmmI/AAAAAAAAH10/3sQNXoH7RjI/s800/P1070104.JPG

Summit area of West Baldface

http://lh3.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TIZc3Xm7jTI/AAAAAAAAH18/-cEVZNRKkto/s800/P1070117.JPG

The East Branch was gently flowing in many spots, but at other spots, it was still and "reflective".

http://lh3.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TIZc5v4OJoI/AAAAAAAAH2E/TSdwDMQRiZI/s800/P1070130.JPG

This was a quick & easy trek since most of it was on-trail and on logging roads, both of which were relatively flat with only an occasional slight pitch here & there. The only significant climb was the short buswhack to the top of West Baldface. I'd guesstimate the hike to be about 10 miles round trip.

Just as a side note, the portion of the East Branch Trail which I hiked was marked with the blue-diamonds used for XC trails. I had suspected that during the winter months this portion of the trail is part of the XC trail system maintained by the Jackson Ski Touring Club (http://jacksonxc.org/maps). Thanks to Donna (of Jimmy Legs and Little D), my suspicion has been confirmed.

1HappyHiker

mtruman
09-08-2010, 08:02 AM
What a gorgeous spot John. The views from everywhere around that area are so beautiful and days like this with just a few clouds drifting around make them perfect. It is truly sad though that you actually needed to move from spot to spot on the summit to achieve the 360 degree views. I'm sure you found that to be most troublesome ;)

Snow Miser
09-08-2010, 09:23 AM
Very nice report of your trek John! It goes to show that even hikes along old logging roads and easier trails can be very scenic. Thanks for sharing.

Anna LeBlanc
09-08-2010, 03:27 PM
Beautiful pictures John!They all look so serene and peaceful.


___________
Anna

KSearl
09-08-2010, 04:36 PM
I think I've said it before on here, but the less traveled hikes make for the most interesting trail reports, I think. So thanks very much for sharing. This looks like a great spot. It must be great to know that you are most likely the only person there that day. For that day, you owned the mountain. Very nice.

Karl

1HappyHiker
09-08-2010, 09:12 PM
What a gorgeous spot John. The views from everywhere around that area are so beautiful and days like this with just a few clouds drifting around make them perfect. It is truly sad though that you actually needed to move from spot to spot on the summit to achieve the 360 degree views. I'm sure you found that to be most troublesome ;)
Glad you liked the views, Mark. Oh! And yes, it was truly burdensome to have to actually move from spot to spot to get the 360 degree views! After hiking all that distance, then I had to walk a few more feet in one direction and then a few more feet in another direction. Gheez!:D

Very nice report of your trek John! It goes to show that even hikes along old logging roads and easier trails can be very scenic. Thanks for sharing.
You're so right about that Bob. Although one can get great views by steep climbs on well-travelled trails to the higher peaks, one can also have a wonderful hiking experience by taking the road less travelled.

Beautiful pictures John!They all look so serene and peaceful.
Thanks Anna! Indeed . . . serene and peaceful it was!

I think I've said it before on here, but the less traveled hikes make for the most interesting trail reports, I think. So thanks very much for sharing. This looks like a great spot. It must be great to know that you are most likely the only person there that day. For that day, you owned the mountain. Very nice.
Karl . . . it's strange that you mention that bit about being the only person there on that day. When I'm at remote places such as that, I sometimes think about that very thing you mentioned. Pretty darn awesome!

krummholz
09-09-2010, 08:49 PM
West Peak, North Baldface, huh? First I looked on the AMC White Mountain guidebook map, and it doesn't have enough detail. And then I sorted through my USGS maps. Drat! Looks like I need the Chatham quad, and I don't have that! When you say "east of the Wildcat Ridge," do you also mean "east of the Wild River"? Is it that point right on the Coos/Carroll county line, east of Ketchum Pond? I suspect my queries are getting tedious for everyone. Well, if you say so. Anyway, your pictures were nice, as usual.

Edit: I see this does have to be east of the Wild River.

1HappyHiker
09-09-2010, 10:48 PM
Is it that point right on the Coos/Carroll county line, east of Ketchum Pond? I suspect my queries are getting tedious for everyone.
Jenny, first of all, I don't find your queries to be tedious. Your questions are always valid and right on point.

And secondly, you nailed it! The little peak that I visited is on the Coos/Carroll county line. Most of the mountain resides within Coos County, but a piece of it is in Carroll County.

Please take a look at the two snippets of the maps shown below. This should help to pinpoint the location of this 2,941 ft peak.


Map 1

http://lh5.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TImaYCQ7QmI/AAAAAAAAH3Q/a4l8imcOP2c/s800/Map5.jpg


Map2

http://lh5.ggpht.com/_jMddpAdzX0E/TImWdNA3g5I/AAAAAAAAH3I/6yojDRlXKiQ/s800/Map4.jpg

krummholz
09-10-2010, 06:02 AM
Thanks for the helpful maps, John! I think this little peak is far enough away from North Baldface, and has enough prominence, that it actually might deserve its own separate identity. But I recognize that people often designate nameless peaks that way--it does help people figure out what neighborhood the peak is in.