View Full Version : My first Seek the Peak Trip Report! Mount Washington via Lion Head!

07-27-2011, 07:29 PM
Hi Everyone!

It's great to be able to post a trip report...it seems like it has been so long for me. I was really happy to be able to take part in hiking Seek the Peak. It was my first as the title alludes. I hiked Tuckerman to Lion Head and went down the same way. Please visit my blog and check out my report and pics. It was a sort of re-do for me since I hiked this same route back in 98' and swore off hiking forever (first hike ever, didn't know what to expect then).

My Trip Report: http://livefreeandhikenh.blogspot.com/2011/07/i-came-back-mount-washington-for-seek.html

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07-27-2011, 08:11 PM
What and awesome trip report and amazing photos Karl! Felt like I was there with you the whole way. So nice to see you standing on the summit smiling after that unhappy day all those years ago. I really had to laugh about your account of reaching the stairs at the summit. The first time we went up I crossed the road, looked up at them and said "you've got to be freaking kidding - after all this we have to go up stairs?!?!". We all made it though. I also agree about hitting that mental wall at the bottom of the summit cone. For me though that last 2.2 down Tucks that you describe is the real wall. I think that's the longest 2 miles in the Whites! While I'm happy that we chose a different peak this year on several counts I'm also sad that I missed the opportunity to visit the Obs and to see our friends on the trail and at the summit. That's one of my favorite parts of the event each year. I particularly missed having the opportunity to meet you at the top - I'd really been looking forward to it. But there's always next year (and a bunch of other mountains that we have the chance to meet up on as well). Thanks so much for sharing your Seek the Peak experience!

07-28-2011, 06:59 AM
Thanks Mark! You are absolutely right. That last 2.2 on Tuckerman are tough going down. I remember coming to the Huntington Ravine Junction and telling my buddy we still had 1.2 miles to go and he looked at me and said, "How's that even possible!" It's a tough hike for sure. Probably one of the toughest I've been on from an endurance/mental standpoint. Even tougher than the Flume Slide Trail, to overcome that is.

The stairs were seriously a killer. Something about going up steady, consistent steps, after maneuvering the rock pile made them really tough.

I'm glad you chose a different peak this year! You got to cross a couple off your list, got less crowded trails and did all in the Presidential Range. I'm bummed we didn't cross paths, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to tag along for Flags on the 48 for Carrigain...90% sure right now that is.

Thanks for the kind words!

Snow Miser
07-28-2011, 07:04 AM
Excellent report and photos Karl! Glad you decided to return to Washington and hike it again after so many years. It was also very nice to finally meet you at the After Party. Love the photo of your daughter sporting that nice Mt Washington shirt. :) Thanks for sharing!

07-28-2011, 04:34 PM
I started hiking last year after having open heart surgery in Nov 2009. I hiked the same route to the summit last June. At the age of 55, I was thrilled to make it up and have my picture taken next to the summit sign. My leg muscles were starting to cramp up the last .5 miles. I was a hurting boy trying to climb the wooden steps. I was so happy when I reached the summit. All I wanted to do was call my wife and my 3 boys to say I made it but was bummed that I had no phone reception. I felt better after resting for about a hour on the summit. I remember thinking all I have to do was get to the Tuckerman Ravine Trail and the last 2 miles would be a lot better and quicker. Wrong. My legs felt like rubber and were actually a little wobbly at times. So for me it was 4 1/2 hours up and 3 1/2 down. I remember seeing this young couple going down the lower half of TR with no problem and very fast. It didn't seem to bother them but I also remember seeing a lot of young people taking as many of breaks or more as me.

07-28-2011, 05:53 PM
Karl, I really enjoyed reading this report, as well the replies in this thread. These are trails I've yet to try, and it looks like they pack a punch, so I look forward to those someday. This kind of reminds me of Isolation. We didn't make the summit in October of 2010, and to go back the next year (or many years, in your case) and have a great experience defeating it, feels awesome. It worked out exactly as you wanted, so that is always fun.

07-28-2011, 08:25 PM
Bob - Thanks! I was happy I got to meet you too. I'm hoping next time, we'll have more than a minute or so to chat...and I won't be so out of it from being exhausted. Hopefully we can hike together soon.

DB - I'm glad you made it up there. It looks like you had better time them me on the way up. 4:30 is book time, so not bad at all! I know what you mean about the breaks. It seems some people hike really fast, but take more breaks. Whatever works for you is what you should do. I'm a slow and steady type hiker myself...and I like my share of breaks :)

Dan - I'm glad you enjoyed the write up. These trails certainly do pack a punch for myself. I doubt you would have as tough a time as me. Based on some of your recent trip reports, you're definitely a great endurance hiker. This trail may be a breeze for you! So I'm guessing you still have to make your way up to Isolation??? You'll obviously be doing it soon the way you're flying through the 48s! Good luck on that upcoming peak. Great job on your journey this year, by the way!

07-28-2011, 08:42 PM

Great report! I really enjoyed reading it. It's good to hear that you succeeded in achieving the goal you set for yourself.
It's funny that you say the summit looked so far away from the top of the headwall...we thought the exact opposite. We thought, "Oh, we can see the tower, we're almost there" So it's safe to assume we were unpleasantly surprised :p

Thanks for sharing!