The middle section may be the toughest of the day. Not too much elevation gained but lots of water crossings with alders, and boulders, gullies, hommocks and steeps banks…. I stopped to wax - putting blue from tip to tail in an attempt to get some traction. At no point can you get any gliding in, nor linked strides. The only time I was sliding was backwards. We begin to think about our shadow party and how sucky it will be for them and their sleds full of gear… The gullies and drifts were steep, the snow deep. Even though Bart broke trail most of the way, I floundered a lot, falling repeatedly. It was tiring to say the least. Sometimes the only
reason I was able to make progress was due to brut force poling.
The high point of the day was at Whidden Pond – spectacular views of Hamlin, Baxter, and Pamola Peaks. Sandy Stream Pond was awesome too. From there on was no big deal, although there were a few sections where spruce and fir were laiden with snow that would dump its load in you face and neck as you try to pass by…brrrrr.
Part III Heading for home….
Start/end/time 7:15 – 11:05 3:50
Distance/ascent/pace 12.9 +455/-1337 3.4 mph
All were up early and eager to go. Conditions were excellent and looked like a good day. A sign in the cabin explained it was a 10 hour day to get to Abol Bridge from Roaring Brook. Took us less than 4 hours. Because of the groomed road, good snow, and my skinny skiis. Jim and Bart pulled the rear all day. Breaking trail or going uphill they would leave me in the dust, but on a trail like this, they didn’t have a chance against my long skinny skis.
Out standing trip. I would do it again. The big thing is – as always – conditions. The following weekend there was rain, several inches then snow, like 18”!! Had we gone that weekend it would have been unbelievably miserable. We were lucky.