Day one’s interary was to go over the prep then make their way through the wilderness to the Nauman Tent Site situated near the AMC’s Mizpah Hut via the still wild but much-improved Mt Clinton Trail. Day two was a traverse over Mts Pierce (4312′), Eisenhower (4760′), and Monroe (5372′) — the latter of which, coincidentally, was “needed” by Anne as she is also working on her NH 48 4000-footers and for her Monroe was number 30… congratulations! They had briefly entertained the option of summiting Washington as well but Anne decided to leave that for her final summit so her family and friends would have the opportunity to easily join in on the celebration. Smart. The duo dropped back down into the river valley and to the shelter located down there. They didn’t stay at the shelter as it was occupied by some fellows who really didn’t leave much space for others, but they did locate a legal, impacted site to set up their tents. On day three they explored the Dry River Falls and some spur trails which led to some old shelter sites. From one such site they used map skills to discover where they were and where the official trail might be. A small ravine and lots of downed trees separated them from the Dry River Trail but a possible bushwhack and reading terrain with the use of a map were discussed. Just returning via the trail sounded like a better idea this time so that’s what they did. The fall leaves obscured the trail and steep detours around washouts didn’t look much like trail either. This provided excellent opportunities to improve trail spotting skills and orienteering. Knowing what to look for when you’re not sure you’re on trail or where it goes is a great confidence booster. Anne was a great student and picked up on it quickly. They found a sweet spot at the river to eat their lunch and soak up the sun on this amazingly balmy late October Sunday and then continued their way back to the trailhead after a satisfying experience.
Well done, both of you. Looks like it was a fantastic adventure.