Prologue: I've set up an account at:
I would appreciate any feed back, positive or otherwise. My personal site was becoming very large and hard to maintain. This also gives the ability of viewing my photos at your own pace or if you prefer using a full screen slideshow by clicking the slideshow option in the upper right hand corner of the page.
Emma takes in the sunrise
Mount Osceola 4340' and East Osceola 4156'
(Mount Osceola Trail from Tripoli Road)
8.4 Miles 2950' Elevation gain
Kevin, Judy and Emma
After our night alone at Waterville Valley Campground we awoke tuesday morning to heavy fog. After making tea we took a short walk down to the Mad River. We noticed the river was full of silt as it flowed past and were pretty certain it was from the construction and subsequent draining of the pond upstream in Waterville Valley. We hope it has no permanent effect on this beautiful river. I wouldn't have wanted to be a fish in there in all that silt. As the morning progressed and we were hoping for the fog to burn off we broke camp and went over to Waterville for some breakfast. The fog seemed to be getting lower and thicker and the plans for backpacking to Osceola were becoming less attractive. We drove over to Lincoln and stopped in at The Mountain Wanderer to pick up a new WMG, the new book by the Monkmans entitled "White Mountain Wilderness" and some new parking passes. The weather wasn't getting any better. We stopped at the visitor center and saw on the Mount Washington Observatory's website that things were clear in Crawford Notch and on the summit of Mount Washington. We drove back to the trailhead on Tripoli Road with the intent of making it a day trip, but at the last minute and much to Jude's consternation I said, "I'm going for it." and threw on the pack. Up we went through the fog. Along the way we met other hikers descending who promised us a clear view at the summit. Of course the sun peeked in and out of the clouds and gave us hope of looking down on an undercast but as we made the summit and threw down the packs we were once again in the thick fog. The wind was blowing at a good clip and the dampness made things a little uncomfortable. After setting up camp Jude said she would prefer to go over to East Osceola now rather than wait for morning and since I wanted to warm up there was no argument from me. Since there are no real views from East Osceola and only filtered views along the trail it didn't much matter that we were in the fog and the walk along the ridge between summits was nice and kept us warm as long as we kept moving. When we got back we had a supper of Raviolio's and I made some coffee. It might be heavy to pack a can or two of Chef-Boy-ardee up a mountain, but it sure tastes good and hits the spot when you're sitting there in the cold and damp. The timing was perfect because it was soon dark, so after cleaning up and hanging the food in a tree we crawled into the tent where it was much easier to keep warm. The wind blew a gale and pulled the tent-stakes up a few times which made the rain-fly snap in the wind and the whole tent feel like it would pick up off the ground on some of the gusts. I got up to replace the stakes and let the dog out to pee and the full moon was now playing hide and seek with the clouds, casting the summit in a wonderful glow. After midnight the wind let up and the sky had cleared and I took a walk around the summit under the full moon. It was cold, coldest I've been yet this season. With the wind now died down we were all able to get some sleep and awoke just before dawn. Clamoring out of the tent we dragged the sleeping bags over to the ledge and set up to watch the sunrise.
Sunrise over Mount Chocorua
The sky was beautiful as it began to glow and light up the clouds. After what seemed an eternity the sun finally broke above the horizon and the summit was bathed in its warming glow. Despite the hard work of getting there, the cold windy conditions and the less than comfortable sleeping arrangements the moments spent watching the sunrise over the mountains make you realize why you are there.
View of the Pemigewassett Wilderness from Mount Osceola
I call them cleansing moments and I can get rid of a lot of baggage in these moments. It makes it all worthwhile.
Sunrise over Mount Washington