Sunday, June 28, 2009

Sandwich Dome 6/27/09

Despite our cancellation of our June 27 hike to celebrate my mothers 50th birthday (and sister backing out due to work) we decided almost at the last minute to take a chance despite the forecast for isolated thunderstorms (most of which were forecasted for late afternoon anyway). It would be my mom, brother and I and we decided on Sandwich Dome. We arrived in the Sandwich Mountain Trail Parking lot at 9:30am. Overcast and wet as expected we started up Sandwich Mountain Trail at 9:50 stopping at the trail head sign for a group picture. The trail head is obscured from the parking lot. Walk 15 ft. or so down the road and the trail is on the left. Cross the ski trail and towards the fenced in power plant, continue following the fence until the trail breaks left into the woods and quickly drops and crosses Drakes Brook. Hope that short walk warmed you up because the trail immediatley begins a moderate climb. As you crest the North side of Noon Peak (2,930 feet) you cross over some sections of rock slab and the Lichen & moss becomes plentiful. One clump of lichen topped moss had a pretty slug on it like I have never seen. Continue on until you come to your first ledge outlook with views North to Waterville Valley and surrounding 4000 footers. We were bug free until this point, though they seemed to be hanging out on just the ledge area. Passing this area you soon come to another open rock area with an excellent view to Jennings Peak (3,455 feet). Drop back into the woods and at the junction take a right for a short climb to Jennings Peak consisting of a wooded summit with several beautiful ledges (all of which were busy with hikers). Here you will find excellent views South to Sandwich Dome, and South West to the Acteon Ridge and Whiteface beyond. Once back down to the main trail we passed by a garter snake curled up in some moss. As my brother and I took some pictures my mother continued on. Then suddenly we heard a loud crash and thump...then our mother calling out to us a bit startled. We ran to see what happened, a smile on her face she pronounced that we had just missed a face-to-face encounter with a buck moose. It took off startled! Well that moose brought us luck as the sky continued to stay free of rain! Now a little steeper we climbed to the summit of Sandwhich Dome, 3,393 feet, arriving around 1:30pm. We broke out lunch and we were soon bombarted by black fly swarms. We took some pics, broke out the Mountain House dehydrated birthday ice cream which was pretty tasty and headed back down. We got onto Drakes Brook Trail and were soon sprinkled on for a short couple minutes. This trail was very gradual and had easy footing. We passed some attractive water falls and onto a logging road where we made a stop at a large cascade/flume area. Then a simple stroll down the logging road arriving at the parking lot at 4:30pm. This was a great hike containing a large number of lichen & moss species. Views are average and limited with a particularly interesting view of the Osceolas but a great hike that is well sheltered for an overcast hike. View Pics Here

1 comment:

  1. There is no better of a place for me in all the world than to celebrate life and my birthday on the peak of a mountain. Something I absolutely love to do. And with my wonderful sons! I will never forget it! The weather was perfect for a hike, the scenery and creatures were evident everywhere. The moss gatherings were numerous because of all the rain we have had here in the great North East of New Hampshire. It may have not been the highest summit in the White Mountains, but if offered up its own magnificent splendor. Quality of life is what it is all about as we get older. And mine, well, It's the bomb!!!