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Thread: Ledges on Whiteface?

  1. #1
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    Default Ledges on Whiteface?

    Heading up to Whiteface and Passaconaway on Saturday. Not liking the 'chance of showers' that's been in the forcast all week. How bad are the ledges on Whiteface, going up the Blueberry Ledge Trail? I've read lots of reports and trail descriptions, but just looking for a first hand account heading UP them. We'll be heading to Passaconaway after, so likely wont' be coming back down them! Trying to find a plan B just in case, but most of the rest of 'the list' is long, multiple, or just as uninviting when wet : ( Anyone?

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    I have only descended them, so can't give a 1st hand account of "heading up", but that said, my personal experience is I'd rather be ascending wet ledges than descending where gravity comes more into play a slip can have more momentum if you know what I mean. I myself would prefer a clockwise loop as you suggest given the forecast.

    KDT

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    Granted I ascended in early winter, but I found the ledges to be a bit tricky. Just beyond the big open ledge with a great vista (and a precipitous cliff) is what I thought was the most difficult of the ledges....no avoiding it either. I read that there was once a rope there to help the climb, but I ended up relying on upper-body strength to pull myself up and over. Climbing doesn't get easier from there, but it's definitely fun. Some very steep stuff. No problems descending the ledges thanks to the snow.

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    I have passed over them in between showers so they were a bit slick. There is some initial challenge (you will see a spot on the ledges where only a small birch seems like a grab-hold - it isn't, so don't use it, its very loose) but it can be done with good foot placement and use of hands. You may even feel a bit more comfy taking off your pack and chucking it on ledges above you. Have fun, its a blast of a hike! But that slog between peaks seems like forever when its raining.
    "LIVE FREE OR DIE...DEATH IS NOT THE WORST OF ALL EVILS." Gen. John Stark. "by reason of much foule weather and Extreme Bad Woods to travel in..." From the letter of my Great Uncle, Samuel Willard (accompanied by my grandfather Henry), to Governor Dummer on August 16, 1725, explaining the reason for his return, being instructed to "range all the country", of the Wawobadenik (White Mountains) July 19-August 16, 1725. I am a 13th generation New Englander and proud of it.

  5. #5
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    I've done them wet, dry, and with snow and ice, with snowshoes and with microspikes. Always as a clockwise loop. They present a moment of thought, but are not "dangerous" if you are careful.



    Tim

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  7. #6
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    Thanks guys! I'm feeling ok with them, but one of the hiking party is not so sure, she's a little nervous and not excited. She froze up on the big slap on Jefferson between the Caps that you have to scale, and I thought it was fun! So, we'll see. Back up plan is either the Carters, or the Tri's from Pine Bend, NOT up the slides : )

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