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|09-15-2011, 11:04 PM||#1|
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Vernon, Conn.
Flags Weekend: Sandwich Dome and Middle Tripyramid - White Mountains, New Hampshire
I don't usually post New England hikes here, but I hiked one of these hikes with someone who knows me from here, and on the other I met someone who knows me from here.
For the third year in a row I flew the flag atop Middle Tripyramid for Flags on the 48, an event in which American flags are flown on the summits of the N.H. 4Ks in remembrance of the victims of theocratic violence. This year I drove up to the mountains a day early and climbed Sandwich Dome.
Saturday, 10 Sept. 2011
This was my first time on Sandwich Dome. I went up Sandwich Mountain Trail and down Drake's Brook Trail. The weather was excellent; there were only a few clouds in the distance, and it was warm but bugless. The SMT showed no signs of storm damage. This trail goes steeply up to a spur, and then proceeds along the spur ridge with several lookouts to the north and east. When I got to the spur trail to Jenning's Peak I was considering whether to take it when a descending hiker told me that it was worth the short trip. I found out the next day that he was wondering why I looked familiar, but didn't realize until later that he'd seen my picture in the ADKHP fora. Anyway, the peak was worth the short trip, so thanks, Jay H.
When I was at the summit I could see much of the Whites. Another guy there said that one can see 24 4Ks from there, and that sounds about right.
On the way down I took Drake's Brook Trail, which did show some serious erosion damage, but only in a few spots.
I spent the night at Osceola Vista Campground, where I shared a site with Biji, who also knew me from the ADKHP list and had signed up for Middle Tripyramid.
It turned out that Marc Howes, whom I know from New England hiking, but who also posts here, was also staying at that campground, so I got to hang out with him for a while.
Sunday, 11 Sept. 2011
There were four of us in the Middle Tripyramid crew for Flags on the 48, me, Biji, JohnGalt, and Windy, who was a surprise; I had thought she wasn't going to be able to make it. I've hiked with JohnGalt (that's a trail name based on a literary character) and especially Windy a number of times before.
We went up from Waterville Valley via Livermore Trail and the South Slide. This was my first time on Livermore Trail or on the slide below the Kate Sleeper intersection. Livermore Trail, which is basically a dirt road, showed major erosion damage in places.
The South Slide, I thought, was fun. It was challenging without ever being scary.
When we got to the summit we set up the flag. Then we checked the time; it was 11:59. (We were supposed to have it up by noon.)
One reason I keep returning to Middle Tripyramid for Flags is because I think its summit is a real nice spot. If I have to hang out for a couple hours somewhere in the Whites, MT is a good place to do it.
A number of hikers came by while we were flying the flag. As always they were appreciative. Soon after the flag was up we saw a helicopter flying over Passaconaway. It then flew over Whiteface, and then came to us. We all waved. I later learned that it was from the New Hampshire National Guard.
There was a brisk wind, which was good for the flag, and which wouldn't have bothered us if we'd been hiking, but since we were stationary for a couple hours it started getting chilly. There were high clouds that day, but they didn't obscure the views and we had no rain.
With my monocular I could see the flag on Passaconaway. I think I also saw the flag on Osceola, but I'm not sure of that.
After taking down the flag we proceeded to North Tripyramid. Middle and North Tripyramids were Biji's 10th and 11th NH4Ks. (He usually hikes in the Dacks, even though he lives in Vermont.)
We descended by Scaur Ridge Trail, and afterwards went to the Common Man in Lincoln, which is where we'd heard the post-Flags gettogether would be. There were only a few other Flaggers there, but we shared stories with them.
Thanks to Biji, JohnGalt, and Windy for your help. Thanks to everybody connected with Flags for making this event work.
Here are the Sandwich Dome pictures.
Here are the Middle Tripyramid pictures.
Here is the Flags on the 48 page.
A month or so after the attacks in 2001 I wrote the following essay: The Greater Struggle. I still agree with it. Please keep in mind that this is my own personal opinion and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the other members of the Middle Tripyramid crew or of anyone else associated with Flags on the 48.
NE111: 87/115 (67/67, 19/46, 1/2); Cat35: 8/39; WNH4K: 16/48; NEFF: 23/50
LT NB 2009
"One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
- Francis Bellamy
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