Hancocks Day Trip, White Mountains, New Hampshire
Monday, May 28, 2001
Conditions: Wet early as it rained about 30 minutes at the beginning. Water crossings okay in morning & we crossed the larger crossings before afternoon storms. Several down trees but all pretty easy to manage. Some snow on Hancock loop between the summits but very manageable without snowshoes which we carried just to be sure. Between the summits, a lot of blowdown appears to have necessitated some new trail cutting & in spots it’s very narrow through the trees. While we were on Hancock Notch in afternoon the trail was a wet mess with a ton of puddles & hailstones which clogged waterbars & left trail underwater & ice!
Special Required Equipment: Rain gear, synthetic clothing, Al wore gaiters, Climbing Helmets would have been nice at the height of hail storm as some were about 2/3 the size of marbles. While poles were useful most of the day, during the height of the Thunderstorm, metal poles & metal framed snowshoes on back made me think I may have been safer with a 1-iron & the rest of my golf bag.
Comments: Only saw two people all day as others must have hiked Saturday & Sunday. A couple of others ahead us in same direction but we never saw them & another car at trailhead when we left at 4:20. The other car I’ve learned was a guy & his two dogs behind us also caught in the hail. I’m convinced the only people who think it’s okay to be outdoors under a forest of trees in a severe T-storm have either never been or have been caught above treeline in a severe storm. We had no views all day until just before T-storm but we were way down on the Hancock Loop trail by then.
Submitted by Mike Paggioli
Wed, 13 Jun 2001