It's taken awhile to get this report together, but my son (18) and I had a terrific hike of Mount Adams on Tuesday July 5th. Similar to our hike of Washington last year, we had pretty much ideal conditions the entire time.
The route we chose took us pretty much straight up Air Line starting at Appalachia before branching off past Madison Hut over to the Star Lake Trail. After summiting we made our way down Valley Way, eventually along Snyder Brook, back to the trailhead. Including breaks to explore the newly renovated hut, etc. and with nothing to rush us, the day added up to just about 7.5 hours. A good day's work!
For those who haven't tried this route, it was a good challenge, probably more so than the Ammo-Jewel loop of Washington. The vertical felt a bit more relentless, the rocks a little less forgiving. The scrambling near the top of Star Lake made my son wary... unusual since he will run to the top of the fire towers in Vermont... but everything here is on such a different scale. And so worth it... the views and landscape had us stopping repeatedly to take it all in.
[Side note: Not sure if it was freak day, or if it's the norm, but the summit of Adams was absolutely teeming with bugs. We barely swatted a fly the entire hike up, but at the top there were too many insects to count - big and small, flying and crawling, on us and all around us. So rather than unpack there, we chose to head down a bit before relaxing and enjoying the views a bit more. Just as rewarding!]
To all who post here - another sincere thank you for the helpful information, knowledge and tips you offer on these forums year 'round. To those who visit here for ideas and may be thinking about hiking Adams - here are a few pics above treeline, in reverse order: