My original plan for the day was to hike somewhere else, but due to the forecast winds, I decided to go back to Tecumseh. I hiked Tecumseh a few weeks ago in March, and it was interesting to note how much the trail had changed in just a couple of reasonably warm weeks! This trip, of course, is also another Carpool Challenge. Even with the limited amount of time, I did do a little exploring of new-to-me-trail, which you’ll see later in the post.
As usual, I arrived at the ski area in Waterville Valley, and since the ski area is now closed, I had the whole parking lot to myself. Not that I needed it, but even two weeks ago, the die-hard skiers were still on the slopes. I started up the trail in bare boots, a real treat after hiking in some sort of traction for the past few months. It was nice to feel the trail and rocks under foot. The first stream crossing came up quickly and to my delight it was much easier to cross this time. Two weeks ago, I had to search along the stream for a good place to cross due to the high and fast moving water. This time I hopped across easily on the rocks at the proper trail crossing.
The trail was pretty clear until closer to the second major stream crossing, where the hard packed snow and ice was still hanging around. The crossing was more open than last time, and like the first crossing, with much less water.
I pushed on to the right hand turn, and the ski slope outlook before taking a break and putting on the microspikes. While at the outlook, I noticed that almost all the snow was gone from this particular ski run, in contrast to the early stages of melt-out two weeks prior.
After break time was over, it was time for the long uphill ascent. Light traction was all that was needed, as there was some ice, packed snow and even bare rock in some places. The carefully built rock staircases were just starting to show through in the upper section, and there was much less of the postholed monorail nearer the summit, with quite a bit of bare rock on the left fork of the summit approach.
After a quick stop at the summit, I decided to check out the Sosman trail on the descent. Of all the times that I had been to Tecumseh, I had never been down the Sosman trail.
The Sosman trail leads to the top of the Waterville Valley ski area, and after a quick hike through some pretty spruce forest, and passing a view good viewpoints, I arrived at the back of some buildings at the cell tower. From here there is a rough road down to the top of the ski area, and following it, I came out to a spot where I had a view of Waterville Valley, the Tripyramids and beyond.
Not a bad little side trail and certainly worth the 15 minute or so detour to go out and back to the ski area!
Overall, a really nice sunny morning to be out on the trail, with just a little new trail adventure for fun!