Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Mahousic Notch - for badasses only
8-11-09 day 70 start: Full Goose Shelter, ME end: Baldpate Lean-To, ME daily mileage: 12.0 total mileage: 901.2 As we were getting packed up to leave Gromet showed up. She'd gotten up early and was stopping in for a break before we even left. We headed out toward the Mahoosuc Notch, touted as the hardest mile on the trail. The notch is just a tight mile long ravine between the mountains, but it is piled with car sized boulders making the trek through somewhere between rock climbing and a playground jungle gym. We climbed up and over craggy rocks and even underneath through little cave like tunnels. Needless to say our mileage slowed to a crawl, but don't get the wrong idea, The Notch was a blast! The rocks stay at a very constant cool temperature and act like air conditioning for the whole notch, there was even ice under some of the rocks! After a break we had to climb out of the notch up the Mahoosuc Arm. It was super steep and mostly along a smooth rock face, we were really glad it was dry. After lunch we fell into our typical trap of reading and napping and extended lunch for 3+ hours-we suck. The place we stopped for lunch did have a cool spring set up where the water flowed out of the mountain down a carved out log and dribbled into the stream. In the afternoon we hiked down into Grafton Notch. We paused for just a second at a roadside trail parking lot and just about got carried away by mosquitoes. We rolled into Baldpate Lean-To after dark and met some cute Quebecquois chicks. The night was super clear, and we had a rare, fantastic opportunity to see the stars.