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Just before the trail broke out onto the exposed summit, we stopped to zip up underlayers, put on extra insulation, wind shells and hoods. Good decision.
If that wind had been carrying snow, sleet, or rain, she wouldn't have done as well. Late winter weather is always iffy. It can feel like spring one moment, deep winter the next. If there's snow in the forecast, it could turn to rain or vice versa. Staying warm when the wind is blowing is possible if your clothing is dry; it's much more difficult if you're wet.
Two other solo hikers were also preparing to ascend. We all discussed footing on what we assumed would be firmly packed trails. One hiker had small "trail" snowshoes. He took off and I never caught up to him again, so they must have worked well . . .
There are several routes up Kearsarge (2,937 feet). The Rollins Trail from the Warner side involves a long walk up the Rollins State Park access road. So I chose to ascend from Winslow State Park on the mountain's northwest face. In winter, you have to walk about a mile up the park access road to get to the trails.
Almost everyone I saw headed for the summit of Kearsarge (mostly guys over 40, it seemed) was properly prepared for the wind and cold with plenty of layers of clothing and good outerwear. One young woman, hiking with a young man was wearing jeans . . . not her best choice in this situation. She got away with it on this perfectly dry day, though I'll bet she really felt the cold wind on that exposed summit. Maybe she learned a lesson for next time.
So if the weather looks like it could turn nasty, choose your gear with extra care and plan a route that keeps you a little closer to safety. Let the wind teach you what you need to know.
Kamik insulated winter hiking boots and my trusty Kahtoola Microspikes. Shane and I started at the same time, found our pacing compatible, the conversation enjoyable (we're both safety conscious gearheads . . . ) and did the whole hike together.
The other hiker, Shane, put crampons on stiff soled plastic mountaineering boots, while I went with comfortable Womens Lv Bag
Snowmobiles had packed the road up to the State Park; easy hiking, with one quick stop to unzip as we warmed up. At the State Park, we had to choose between the steeper, more direct 1.1 mile Winslow trail, or the longer 1.7 mile Barlow Trail which meanders east, then back across the open summit. Since the footing looked good especially with traction aids and since the wind was blowing hard, we chose the shorter, more sheltered route. Good choice.
have" stayed home and worked, but I had errands to run. Since I had to leave the house anyway, I dressed a little warmer (OK, a lot warmer . . .) put a few essentials in a backpack and detoured out of my way for a quick jaunt up Mount Kearsarge in Warner and Wilmot, NH. What would you have done?
If you are planning to do some dayhiking while winter still lingers or when the trails dry out in the spring, you could do a lot worse than to explore the SRK Greenway. There's no camping anywhere along the route, and 75 miles is probably more than most people want to do in a day, so dayhiking is Louis Vuitton Glasses Case really the best option. The route circles Lake Sunapee while touching the summits of three mountains and many smaller hills. It's neatly divided into 14 segments, about half a good out and back dayhike for a moderately fit hiker, half better tackled with a car at each end.
If you ever need to learn that you aren't in total control of your world, the wind can be a wonderful teacher. High wind, common in late February and March is a real game changer.
Enjoying those cooling breezes
It was a beautiful blue sky Sunday morning February with the temps in the very low teens and the wind howling. I "should Lv Goggles Prices
Sadly, winter won't last forever and Mud Season awaits. After that comes the spring and summer hiking, bugs and all.
How did you spend your day? Life isn't a spectator sport. Get out and enjoy!
views were gorgeous but we didn't linger very long to savor them. No picnic on top this day! We descended the same sheltered trail we came up and less than 45 minutes later were back at the cars, windburned, and exhilarated. In a little less than two and a half hours, on a day that most people would have said was "too cold and windy" for outdoor fun, I got a wonderful workout, stunning views and a memory that will make me smile for a long time.
Out on the exposed rock summit, the wind was savage, a steady 40 mph or more with frequent gusts strong enough to knock you down if you weren't braced. The wind chill was formidable. I could feel the frost nip developing on exposed cheeks (I had a face mask but hadn't put it on), and taking photos immediately cost me the feeling in my fingertips.
On Kearsarge, instead of climbing along an exposed ridgeline, we took a trail that stayed in the woods until the last possible moment. We were able to still reach the summit and see the great views, but limited our exposure. Always factor in the wind when choosing your routes and stay out of the direct force as much as you can.
Walking up the forested trail, we could feel the wind on occasion and hear it constantly in the treetops. As we got closer to the summit, the roar grew louder. At an overlook, we stopped for photos and the cold immediately attacked fingertips through light gloves.
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