My first ever backpacking overnight on the Bigelows with Travis 2010
Weeklong AT Section from Caratunk to Stratton Brook 2011
Baxter State Park (Base Camping at Chimney Pond) 2010, 2011, 2012
Mount Bald, Carthage, ME
This is a little mountain we use to climb on the mornings when we would camp at a nearby gay owned campground called Blue Moose. It became our Blue Moose ritual. As soon as we would roll out of our tents, we’d drive to the trailhead and hike up. Then head back to camp and make breakfast and coffee. Blue Moose is no longer there but we had many fun weekends there.
The Presidential Traverse
2 Day Hike across the Presidential Range (Overnight at Lakes Of The Clouds) 2011
We left our car at Crawford Notch and got a ride to the Appalachian Trailhead at the base of Mount Madison. We then hiked the 22 miles back to our car over Mt Madison, Mt Adams, Mt Jefferson, Mt Clay, Mt Washington, Mt Monroe, Mt Eisenhower, Mt Pierce, Mt Jackson, Mt Jackson and Mt Webster. It was epic.
2 Day Hike: Up Webster Cliff Trail (AT), Down Crawford Path (Overnight at Mizpah Hut) October 2015
This was just a few months after Maura swam the English Channel breaking the record for being the oldest Irish person to do it! This trail had some intense and relentless steep pitched rock scrambles. We arrived at Mizpah Hut after dark having missed dinner and having hiked for 10 hours. The staff were incredibly welcoming and had dinner set aside for us.
The Pemigewasset Wilderness
This area has a mountain ridge that forms a big circle. Known as the “Pemi Loop”, this is a popular hike because you can hike to and from your car without backtracking. If you don’t have time to do the entire loop, there is a trail that cuts up thru the middle of the loop called the Franconia Brook Trail. I hiked the Pemigewasset Loop in 2 “Semi Pemi” sections using this valley trail to hike in and camping at the backcountry campsites located on the sides of the mountains along the way. These campsites are maintained by the Appalachian Mountain Club and for a small fee you get the luxury storing your food in a bear box, a level tent platform allowing you to camp on a steep pitch and a well churned composting outhouse. The “Croo” that staff these campsites are always really friendly.
3 Day “Semi Pemi” Loop Counterclockwise over Mt Lafayette 2013
3 Day “Semi Pemi” Loop Clockwise over Mt Bond and the Bondcliffs 2015
Doublehead Cabin, Spring 2012
The Appalachian Mountain Club have some rustic cabins that you can rent out for cheap. Inside there is a wood stove and some plywood bunks. This cabin has a backcountry ski trail that you can hike up and ski down. Six of us headed up for the night. Travis and I brought our snowboards hoping for a ride down the next day but the snow had melted so much and our packs were so heavy as we did not pack light since the trail was not very long. We were also carrying fire wood. Travis and I decided to ditch our boards about two thirds of the way up realizing we would have a better ride down without our full packs and on the lower part of the trail where there was more snow cover. So once we got to the cabin, we took off our packs and hiked back down to our snowboards. We rode down to the car, ditched the boards and then hiked back up to the cabin where we cooked a pot of chili over the wood stove and settled in for the night. The next morning we took turns sledding down the trail on a sled that Kael had built to carry the firewood wood up with. Since there was such a thin cover of snow, we ended up carrying the wood but the sled made our descent really fun!
VERMONT 3 Day Hike on Long Trail/AT over Stratton, 2015
Mount Greylock (Day hikes & Overnight Trips) 2010, 2012, 2015
Mount Washington State Forest 2 Day Hike Over Alander Mountain 2014
YOSEMITE Vernal Falls and Nevada Falls, Spring 2009
In the Spring of 2009 Travis and I camped in Yosemite and hiked up some of the falls. We went up as far as we could until we hit snow and then saw a few warning signs for mountain lions. So we turned back. Yosemite is known for bears. We had an unrestful night hearing other campers bang pots and pans to deter the bears that were wandering thru the campsites looking for food. We took precautions and locked all our food in the bear boxes provided on the camp sites along with anything scented like toothpaste and toiletries. The ranger told us that bears were known to rip off the roof of your car like a sardine can if they smelled something tasty in there. So we even combed the floor of the car picking up tiny pieces of potato chips and other road trip debris making sure there was nothing in our car. We were very nervous about sleeping in Travis’ 1-person tent. We thought we heard a bear at one point but it was just our neighbor snoring. In the morning, we climbed out of the tent and Travis discovered that he had a pocket full of chocolate that he had forgotten and that he had this chocolate with him in our tent THE WHOLE NIGHT. He was officially dubbed the trail name “Bear Bait” and we continue to laugh about that story and count our blessings.