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28 May 2018

Bushwhack off Boulder Loop Trail to Ledges on Spruce Hill


In late May 2018, I did a short bushwhack off the Boulder Loop Trail located along NH 112, just a short distance west of Conway, NH.  This is something that has been on my ‘to-do list’ for a while.

The primary goal of this off-trail adventure was to explore the two ledges that are circled and numbered on the Google Earth image shown below. Both ledges had good views, but my favorite were from what I’m calling "Bushwhack Ledge #2".


Of course getting to the trailhead for the Boulder Loop Trail involves crossing over the picturesque Albany Covered Bridge.
On the way up the Boulder Loop Trail, I stopped at one of the many overlooks. And, at one of these stops, there was this “Spring-green” view looking eastward down the Swift River valley.
As mentioned earlier, the views from "Bushwhack Ledge #2" were my favorite of the day.  From this ledge are many grand vistas, including this one which begins with Mt. Chocorua (at left) and also includes other notable peaks such as Mt. Paugus; Mt. Whiteface; Mt. Passaconaway,; The Sleepers; Hedgehog and Potash; Tripyramids; and tops of Osceolas at far right.
My most favorite view of the day was this zoomed image, also taken from "Bushwhack Ledge #2".  Framed between Bear Mtn (at left) and Table Mtn (at right) are: Mt. Tremont; Mt. Carrigain; Bartlett Haystack.
And speaking of Table Mountain, this zoomed image shows the huge ledge on Table Mountain. The Attitash Trail runs along the very top of this ledge where there are fabulous views.
A highly-zoomed view of Mt. Chocorua, as viewed from "Bushwhack Ledge #2"
The off-trail ledges that I visited are on a little peak named Spruce Hill (1,950 ft). Although I’m not a dedicated peakbagger, it was decided to swing by and sign the register inside the summit canister. (Spruce Hill is on the NH 500 Highest List.)
Along the way, I saw this little ‘bouquet’ of wildflowers (Bluets and violets living in harmony side-by-side).

Since it was along my route back home, a brief stop was made at WMNF’s Rocky Gorge Scenic Area where this photo was snapped.
And as a nice ending to the day, I spotted these lenticular clouds hovering over the mountains while driving along Bear Notch Road.   These “spaceship-like” clouds are always fascinating to see!

Please be assured that you don’t need to bushwhack off the Boulder Loop Trail to get some great views.  Click/tap this LINK for an interesting article containing some photos and additional information about the Boulder Loop Trail.


Rita Wechter said...

This post has everything, John. Great views, a covered bridge, spring greenery, spring wildflowers, and even a peak-bagging!

I'm curious about the lenticular clouds. Here in the west, lenticular clouds over a mountain peak usually signify a storm coming in. Did you have a storm the following day?

MatthewMarchon weebly com said...

Amazing work as always. I love that Spruce Hill ledge, particularly the framed view of Tremont and Bartlett Haystack but when I did it back in the fall, Carrigain was missing. Had to go back and look at my pictures which are never as good as yours and yep, sure enough I see where it should have been but it was completely covered by clouds. Any pictures from Ledge #1? I didn't venture out that way but am very curious. Thanks for another great post.

1HappyHiker said...

Hey Matthew . . . many thanks for your generous comments about my photos. And while we are in the mode of bestowing compliments, I want to say that I’m a fan of you and your many explorations and the documentation you provide via social media and your recently published books.

Further regarding photos, you asked if I had any images to share from Ledge #1. Unfortunately, I don’t. During my ‘culling process’, I inadvertently deleted the few snapshots that I took from Ledge #1. However, it’s no great loss since it would be easy enough to go back to that spot again. However, I must say that the views from Ledge #1 were a disappointment in that they were not that much different from the on-trail views from the Boulder Loop Trail. But, since it would be so easy to make a return visit to Ledge #1, I’ll likely do it sometime just to see if there was something I overlooked. :-)


1HappyHiker said...

Hi Rita . . . my apologies for the delayed reply.

Regarding your question about lenticular clouds being a predictor for stormy weather, I cannot say this with complete certainty, but it’s my impression that here in northern NH, this type of cloud formation isn’t a reliable predictor for impending stormy/rainy weather.

Thanks as always for reading my blog and posting your comments.