Finally! I made a trip to Tecumseh in the sunshine the whole way up and down! Since I knew I wouldn’t be able to hike this weekend due to prior commitments, I figured a quick trip up Tecumseh would be a fun carpool challenge, and since the sun was shining, it would be even better.
Pulling into the parking area at the Waterville Ski Area, I saw a fellow hiker head off into the woods. By look of his hat, I was pretty sure that I knew who the gentleman was, so I quickly got ready and headed up the trail. This morning, getting ready only meant putting microspikes on the feet and the snowshoes on the pack just in case. From current reports, the trail seemed pretty well packed out.
The first stream crossing right at the beginning of the trail was still a bit open, but the next one was nicely snowbridged.
Continuing quickly up the trail, I finally caught up with the gentleman and sure enough, it was Wolfgang, just as I had thought. I had met him, Ed Hawkins and a few others on Waumbek in November. He and I hiked together for the rest of the day and it was nice to enjoy another trip to Tecumseh with someone else. He’s also the most recent grid finisher, finishing in December on Mt. Jefferson.
We headed up the trail, took a break, made the right hand turn which signals the beginning on the long, steady, uphill ascent. With a steady pace we continued to gain altitude, finally leveled out and then passed the Sossman Trail. The final ascent to the summit from here was quick and easy. The morning weather continued to be pleasant, not too cold or windy and full of sunshine, giving us some nice partial views along the way. At the summit, we stood picking out as many peaks as possible, and searching around for other good views. Washington was visible this day, along with some interesting lenticular clouds. By peeking through the trees, we were also also to catch glimpse of Franconia Ridge, and possibly the Bonds and the Twins.
After a nice break, it was time for descent. We moved at a quick pack down the trail and soon we were at the sharp turn and the lookout at the ski slopes. The ski slopes were roped off today, and the snow looked rather slick and crusty. These conditions would be evident further down in the descent when we heard a skier descend the ski slopes. The sounds as the skier passed were icy and crunchy, not soft and hissing like when skiing on powder.
Continuing down toward the car, we even saw a chipmunk. I tried to get a photo of it, but to no avail. We had to wonder why this poor little chipmunk was not napping like so many others of it kind. Maybe the very mild winter we’re having? Not sure.
In short order, we arrived at the cars, having had a nice hike with nice company and nice weather. I’m glad I got out today and was glad to run into and hike with an accomplished fellow hiker.