Presidential Range Backpacking Adventure

[Updated April 2, 2009]

From Mr. Croteau:

I have come up with an itinerary and route for the August backpacking trip. The route is intended to provide a variety of different elements to keep it interesting for those that attend. I have worked with the Appalachian Mountain Club folks and the NH Forest Service to put this together. The route starts at Dry River Campground, consists of some wooded hiking along a stream on the dry river trail (I’m told there’s water holes to swim in), an overnight in the forest, then hike above tree line to summit Mt. Monroe, hike to and stay at the AMC hut Lakes of the Clouds (a prepared dinner and breakfast), then summit Mt Washington (get a bowl of chili and use rest rooms) and end at Pinkham Notch.

The dates:
Friday August 7th – arrive at Dry River Campground
Saturday August 8th – leave in the am and hike into the forest on Dry River Trail (5.4 miles)
Sunday August 9th – Hike Mt Eisenhower Trail, to Crawford Path, Summit Mt Monroe, and stay at Lakes of the Clouds AMC hut (4.3 miles)
Monday August 10th – breakfast at 7am, Crawford path (1.1 mile), Summit Mt. Washington, Tuckerman Ravine Trail to Pinkham Notch (4.4 miles)
Depart for Milford on Monday evening August 10th

This route accomplishes a number of things. We backpack the majority of the food we need for the first day (dinner and breakfast) and consume it in the forest and before we lug it up any significant elevation. That lightens our pack for the hike to Mt Monroe and then we stop at the AMC hut, where we get fed a family style dinner and breakfast. Our packs are lightest here with only lunch for the summit and descent of Mt Washington. It also gives us a fairly good variety of forest and above tree line views of the Presidential range.

The AMC hut charges per person and I have already reserved 20 spots. I have to pay 60 days in advance, so I’ll need a definite commitment by June 5th for those that are coming. The AMC hut cost is $85 per adult and $51 per scout.

The one logistical issue to work out is how to get from Pinkham notch to Dry River Campground on Monday. We may have to drive and leave a couple of vehicles to Pinkham so we can get back to Dry River Campground. That’s my current plan.

For the scouts, the Personal Fitness Merit badge is a prerequisite to attend. This hike should be fun and will be challenging.

Currently we have spots for 20 people for this trip (we may be limited to only 20), so I need to know who plans to go soon. Please RSVP to me within the next month if you intend to go.

P.S. For those that need the PF merit badge, work on your plan and fitness log; it should be easy with Lacrosse and spring sports starting up. Remember it takes three months to complete. You need to start now if you plan to attend the trip in August.