September 24, 2005
Mounts Eisenhower and Monroe, White Mountain Series
The trip began on sunny , bright, picture perfect fall day. We drove directly to the Ammonoosuc trailhead, near the Cog RR base station, which is where we would end up and did a car spot. Then it was back down the Mt Clinton Road to the Edmands Path trailhead. Then we were on the trail, which is pretty flat at the bottom as we got into the groove of the hike. Soon though, we were climbing at a good pace. The Edmands Path is a very well graded route. The higher we got, the more obvious it was that we were going to have a great day!
After reaching the treeline, you hit the junction with the Crawford Path on the backbone of the ridge. From here you can see Mt Eisenhower, our first destination for the hike. The Mt Eisenhower Loop is steep but short until you reach the broad open slopes of the summit. We spent some time up there enjoying the endless panoramic views. We then headed for Monroe.
Travel on this ridge is spectacular. On a clear day like this, time loses meaning as you just walk. Ed snapped away with his camera and I can't wait to see the photos! Charles, a very accomplished hiker, hiked ahead and would stop to gather rays as he waited for Ed and Myself. The views is all directions were perfect. You could clearly see Camels Hump, Mansfield, and the Worcester Range. We hiked up the Monroe Loop and stopped on "Little Monroe" and looked out on Mount Franklin, a small bump on the ridge. It was then a drop down into a Col and then a steep climb to Monroe's summit.
We hung out on the summit of Monroe, briefly just above the Crawford Path. We were about to embark on a long, steep decent. We'd spent some time above treeline on one of the most wonderful hiking days of the fall, and now we were going to drop several thousand feet in a few miles, so a rest was in order. We dropped down towards Lake of the Clouds Hut, which was closed for renovations, here you were in a wind sheltered area that was sunny and warm where we enjoyed our lunch. Then, down the steep "Ammy" viewing the smoke from the "Smog Railroad" as we hiked. We took the short side trip to the gorge and its spectacular waterfall. Then finally made it down to the car where we did our good deed for the day by giving a hiker, who did the same trip as we did, a ride back to her car at the Edmands Path trailhead so she would not have to do the tedious several mile road walk back. This was the kind day, you wish you could have every time when you hike.
All photos by Ed Loewenton.