Sunday, February 28, 2021

Wet Snow on Joe Pond Trails.... #32

Just Happy to be Out

What drove me crazy about yesterday's hike on the Joe Pond trails? The wet snow? No. The packing of wet snow beneath my microspikes? Nope. That wet feeling an hour in as the water seeps through my coat onto my skin? Not at all. Twenty minutes into the hike I found myself humming, then singing, "The Twelve Days of Christmas." The damn song wouldn't leave my brain. And if you know me, I'm not really a Christmas guy unless I have kids here. But! We got in 4 miles and enjoyed the wintry weather on the mountain behind the house even with that annoying sound track in the background.  


Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Shitty hike............... #30


I rarely have bad hikes. Even if it's hot & humid or bitter cold, I love the trail. Yesterday, not so much. Even Bailey seemed off except for running into 4 other other hikers who enjoyed his trail-side greeting. Here's what I wrote on my AllTrails report: 

Whiner report: Firm trail with 2-3" of wet snow that clings to both microspikes and snowshoes. Center trail is firm, but outside of that you're in post-hole city. The tread on my hiking boots is worn down, so I slipped around on the steeps--hiking poles would have helped... add in a cracked toenail and well... slog up, slip down. In any event, nice to be out. HYO... &#!%$* .... H. (Sorry about this whiny report.)

After the hike... "Do I still get a treat?"

On the second switchback 
(When a trail zig-zags back-and-forth up a very steep section of terrain.) 

Second stream crossing where I abandoned the hike. 


Sunday, February 21, 2021

Whitecap to Bailey's Cairn (Hike #28)

Looking toward Sunday River, The White Mountains, and The Mahoosuc Range
Remember to click photos to enlarge.  

RUMFORD WHITECAP: We hiked up Orange Trail to Yellow and crossed over to what I call the Western Summit [regular Whitecap hikers will know that the Western Summit isn't really a summit at all]. From the trailhead until I got out of the trees, I wore microspikes and stayed center trail to avoid post-holing. No issues. FYI: Bailey wore uncut claws. On Yellow, the snow was windblown and softer; we still avoided postholes, but hiking proved a hair trickier balancing center trail. Backcountry skiers had skied down the hiking trail above treeline, so in places it was difficult to spot the hard-packed snow of the hiking trail. I'm not complaining! The skiers and snowshoers have kept the trail well packed allowing me to hike without snowshoes for a decade. Hikers: With warmer weather coming midweek, I'm wondering how much the snow will soften. Think about snowshoes if you're heading beyond treeline. As always, HYOH.

Ice Cairn marking the trailhead

Note Mt Abram in Lockmills

Where Orange meets Yellow


Only place I've post-holed all winter--went through 2-3 times

Note the snowshowers


The treat machine. 

Just nice. 

Mt Abram

Bailey's Cairn from a distance

Back to Red Hill (Hike #29)

Sunday River surrounded by the Mahoosuc Range taken
from Red Hill Road. 

I'd thought about driving to Weld today and to hike the State Park trails up near Center Hill. However, the roads have begun to sprout frost heaves and honestly, after yesterday's hike, I felt lazy. So, off to Red Hill and toward Whitecap. What a blue-sky day we're having with a small snowstorm arriving tomorrow. Just a touch of spring in the air even at 30F with a wind chill at 20F... puddles on the road ways and, as mentioned, frost heaves. And finally, this later February sunshine carries a punch.  


Friday, February 19, 2021

Whitecap to the Saddle

This branch swiped my hat as I walked beneath it!
Click on photos to enlarge

We hiked up the Yellow trail to the saddle between Whitecap and the adjoining, unnamed mountain. The snow gives a good workout even though the trail is fairly hard packed.  I could hear a couple of skiers talking on the mountainside but couldn't eye them. Three snowmobilers drove by on the first half of Yellow and then we were on our own. I didn't realize, or may have forgotten, that it's possible in the wintertime to see White Heat trail on Sunday River from Whitecap's Yellow trail. 

Connector Trail Bridge

Connector Trail signs

Yellow trail signs in the Saddle

Bailey thinking treats when we return home. 

Me mucking about with overhead selfies on
the bottom of the Yellow trail.  

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Dr. Anne M. Kent, Endowed Chair in Women's Health, Hoag Hospital, Newport Beach, CA


Yesterday, we celebrated Anne. After 30 years at Hoag Hospital serving the women of the community and delivering 10,000 babies, Anne received an endowed chair in medicine from the Board of Trustees of the hospital. Robert T. Braithwaite, President and Chief Executive Officer of Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian, announced the award and a long-time colleague in women's health, Dr. Allyson Brooks, spoke at the board meeting celebrating Anne's deep commitment to her patients, her colleagues, and the hospital community. Dr. Brooks wept as she began--so did I. 

What I appreciated most about Dr. Brooks' talk at the board meeting was its focus Anne's humanity and her deep commitment to others. She titled her talk, "I can do that..." in tribute to Anne's willingness to be involved in everyanything that benefitted her patients, her colleagues, the hospital, and the community. The same can be said of her commitment to family and friends.  

Yesterday, Rob sent around the board announcement, and the family swelled with pride over our sister's accomplishments. It won't surprise anyone that Anne has joined a clinical research trial in her battle against Bulbar ALS. It has not surprised any of us in her family that in the past 6 months she has gone water skiing, snow skiing, hiking, and biking with family and friends. She put on her annual Christmas extravaganza; babysits her grandson, Husdon, once or twice a week; and stays independent. Last week she flew up to visit her son Ryan and his wife Kristin in The Bay Area. Yesterday afternoon, she booked an Air BB and drove up to Santa Barbara where Rob would arrive after work. I can picture them walking the beach hand in hand at sunset.  

Congratulations, Anne. I love you. 

Anne loving camp
September 7, 2020, Weld, Maine



Red Hill @ 15 degrees & wind (#15 Hike)

Sunday River Ski Resort
Click photos to enlarge

After a mixture of snow and freezing rain, the snow settled into something akin to pliable cement. Between reading and responding to student work and a 3pm Zoom committee meeting, I decided we'd do a quick jaunt up Red Hill. Pliable cement doesn't allow for quick, however. Still, it's good to get out and see the sights on a winter's day...even if the car did get stuck for a few minutes at the trailhead. 


Summit treat? 

Hiking Red Hill Road

Mount Washing above Sunday River

Mount Blue in Weld on the return

Post-hike bone.