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Bethlehem, New Hampshire, United States
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03 September 2011

A Trek to Mt. Waumbek on a Misty Day

There is the old saying that states: “Variety is the spice of life”.   Most would agree that this adage applies to hiking, just the same as it does to other endeavors in life.  Taking this into consideration, perhaps a misty day can be considered as an opportunity to add some spice and variety to your hiking repertoire.

On a misty September 3rd, my friend Marty and I headed off for a trek to Mt. Waumbek.  We knew from the outset that we would be doing this trek just for the pure pleasure of being in the forest.  Of course, that particular element is present to a certain degree for all hikes.  However, a misty day seems to infuse an added dimension by transforming your journey into a "walk in the woods", rather than a "sprint to the top".  The more relaxed pace heightens your awareness of trailside features that might otherwise go unnoticed.  And ergo, like magic, your hike has been spiced up with some variety!

Well, with that overly philosophical introduction, shown below are a few photos that show some of the trailside features that added some spice to our trek to Mt. Waumbek on a misty September day.

The trail disappearing into the mist

The Gray Jays . . . of course!

Lots of Fungus Among Us

Occasional rays of sun filtering through the mist

Marty and I were not the only people who were hiking the Starr-King Trail to Mt. Waumbek.  We talked with a lot of very nice folks who seemed to be thoroughly enjoying their day in the woods.  Among the people we met were Big Earl and his hiking companion Sue.   Readers of the Views from the Top (VFTT) hiking forum are very familiar with the adventures of these two strong hikers.  Shown below is a photo I snapped of Big Earl and Sue.  Don't they look fresh as a daisy!?  Well, would you believe that they had already completed a hike earlier in the day to another NH 4K peak, i.e. Mt. Moosilauke!

We also met Summerset who was accompanying her 10 year old son Cameron.  He was hiking Mt. Waumbek to complete his #23 of the NH 4K peaks!  Summerset chronicles Cameron's  hiking adventures, as well as her own, on a Blog entitled "Peakbagging New Hampshire's 48 4,000 Footers" (Click HERE to access her Blog.)
Shown below is a snapshot taken of Summerset and Cameron.

To sum it up, a good way to add some variety and to spice up your hiking menu is to toss in an occasional dash of "mist".  This ingredient has the makings for a winning recipe! 

5 comments:

  1. Great photos! We didn't get a visit from the grey jays as both summits were busy when we got there. The photo of the sun through the mist is magnificent - that's what New England hiking is all about. I've never met Earl and Sue, but I've followed their adventures on VFTT - they seem like they're great people.

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  2. It was terrific to meet you and Cameron on Mt. Waumbek!

    Regarding your comment about the photo of the sun through the mist exemplifying what New England hiking is all about . . . I completely agree! Don't get me wrong! I like having awesome views of mountain peaks as well as the next person. However, I don't mind having an occasional hike in when conditions are misty. And I readily admit to being prejudiced, but there is nothing that is quite like a misty day in New England. It's special!

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  3. It was a real treat to meet you and Marty when our paths crossed headed in opposite directions. You guys provided an unexpected highlight to the day as well as something I really needed - a break!

    Seriously, I'm very happy to have met both of you on the trail Saturday. As I mentioned elsewhere; “John and I have exchanged correspondence many times but had never actually met. Meeting someone like that and being able to finally place a face with the name is one of the best surprises there is.”

    You guys added a little more "special" to a day that was already pretty good.

    Hope to see you again soon.

    BIGEarl

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  4. Earl, thank you! I think I speak for both Marty and I when saying that we felt as those we were meeting a couple of celebrities when we bumped into you and Sue! You two do some truly phenomenal stuff, and you have quite a following! It is amazing how a face-to-face meeting can make such a difference. Sometimes it’s a positive experience, and sometimes otherwise. This was definitely a positive experience!

    Thanks for posting such a nice comment to my Blog!

    John

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  5. John,

    thanks for blogging our hike(s) and as usual, thanks for the great company and another fun day in the mountains-

    It was a treat to run into Earl and Sue and to meet Summerset and Cameron. I was really impressed with Cameron's knowledge and enthusiasm for the mountains.

    Marty

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