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08 June 2012

Why I Went to Mt. Tecumseh

Why did I choose to do a hike to Mt. Tecumseh on 07-June-2012, especially since I've been to this 4K peak many times before, and have seen the views in both summer and winter?  Well, there were two reasons.

First of all, I'm still engaged in my recent quest of trying to do something new for each hike that I undertake.  In this case, the destination was not new, but the route I chose was new, at least for me.  I'd never hiked the Mt. Tecumseh Trail from the Tripoli Road trailhead.

My second reason was weather-related.  Depending upon which website you accessed (and when you accessed it), the chances for rain varied from 40% to 60%.  With those uncertain odds, I didn't want to go to a new destination and then be unable to experience the views due to weather conditions.

So, in the end, I chose to use a new route to hike to a destination where I'd already seen the views, and so it didn't matter to me how obscured the vistas might be.

I was favorably impressed with the route from the Tripoli Road trailhead.  The trail is well-maintained, and the treadway is only lightly worn and soft underfoot.  There are large segments on the upper portion of the trail where pine cone debris on the trail makes it appear as though it has been freshly mulched! (see photo below)

If I had to say anything bad about the Tripoli Road approach it would be this.  There is a reverse elevation gain which sort of sucks.  However, I timed it, and it took less than 15 minutes to slog up the steep slope that I'd descended on the outbound leg of my hike.  So, in the grand scheme of things, that's not much to complain about!

Did I get rained on?  Nope!  I did not.  There were some threatening clouds, as seen in the next photo.

However, despite the obscured vistas in some directions, there were views in other directions. Particularly scenic was the Franconia Range which can be seen on the horizon in the next photo.  This photo was taken from the Sosman Trail just a bit south of the Tecumseh summit (Mt. Tecumseh is seen nearby through the trees on the far right).

The next snapshot is just a zoomed photo of the Franconia Range.

I hiked to the end of the Sosman Trail to take a look at the ski area during its "summer break".   As seen in the composite photo below, it looked perhaps a bit lonely and forlorn.  I suspect it is counting the days until snow season when it will have hoards of visitors to keep it company.

And speaking of "summer break", during my travels to Mt. Tecumseh, I came across a few other items that had experienced a "break" of sorts.  There was a recently broken Robin's egg, and a butterfly with a rectangular chunk broken-off from the bottom of its right wing (next photo).

To sum it up, this was a rather short and somewhat silly Blog report of a trek to Mt. Tecumseh.  Next week, I'll be travelling with my wife over to Camden, Maine for a few days.  If time, weather and opportunities are favorable, perhaps there will be something of general interest to report from that experience.


Heather said...

Nice post. I too was on Tecumseh yesterday. We must have missed each other. I was pleasantly surprised that the rain held off. Once I got in the car and back on 93 the skies opened up.

1HappyHiker said...

Thanks Heather!

I’m notorious for my late starting time for hikes, and so that might explain why we missed each other. I didn’t get on the trail until about noon, and wasn’t on the summit until about 2 PM-ish.

Like you, I was very pleasantly surprised that the rain held off. I fully expected to be hiking in the rain during at least some portion of the trek.

Just as a side note, one of my daughters is name Heather!


Summerset said...

Nice trip! I agree, there is that slight climb back up on the way back, but it wouldn't be something to deter me from taking that route again, as it is quite a bit less traveled. You actually got some nice views and photos. Those last two photos have nice contrast in colors and textures!

1HappyHiker said...

Hi Summerset,

I’m in total agreement with you, i.e. the reverse elevation gain wouldn’t be enough to stop me from travelling that route again. Except, until I get off my “kick” about doing something new on each of my treks, I’d need to find some way to make that route new to me. Maybe I could hike it by walking backwards! :-)

Kidding aside, part of my inspiration for doing this hike came from your trek (link below) in early May via the same Tripoli Rd trailhead.

Thank you for your nice words about the photos!


OPW5000 said...

Looks like things are greening up nicely! Nice pictures.

1HappyHiker said...

Thanks Owen!
Regarding “greening up”, all the rain we’ve had recently has certainly pushed things in the “green direction”! :-)


Rita Wechter said...

Looks like a beautiful hike with many rewards—the views, the mossy carpet trail, the blue of the robin's egg and the yellow of the butterfly. What kind of butterfly is it, do you know? I hope the creature can navigate its way around with a chunk of tail missing—never saw that before!

I like your photos of the lonely ski area. Isn't it great, all the wildflowers that bloom under chair lifts during the summer? I think it's kind of nice that those areas get to take a "breather" at this time of year!

Nice post, John.


1HappyHiker said...

Hi Rita,

As you so aptly point out, there were a variety of colors, textures, and views associated with this hike which made it very rewarding!

Regarding the butterfly, I’m no expert, but I'm fairly confident that it is a rather common species called the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail.


Grant Ritter said...


Kudos for finding a new ( to you ) route on Tecumseh! I love seeing photos of the ski area. I am one of the many who love skiing down its slopes on days I can't hike.

1HappyHiker said...

Thanks Grant!
This week I'm over in Maine (Camden Hills area) checking out some more stuff that is new to me. :-)


Anonymous said...

I thought you might well say you had decided to try the abandonded trail that starts off to the west of the Tripoli Road trailhead...Erugs

1HappyHiker said...

Hi Ellen,

That is an excellent idea! I must admit that I’d not even considered that! I’ve followed a short segment of that old trail from “the top down”. However, I’ve never tried to follow it from ”the bottom-up”! It’s now officially on my list. Have you ever hiked this abandoned trail? If so, any pointers would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you for your reply!