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Phelps and Tabletop this weekend.

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  • Phelps and Tabletop this weekend.

    I'm thinking of tackling one or both of Phelps and Tabletop this weekend. I've done several winter 4000 footer dayhikes in VT and NH, not as many in the Adirondacks. My wife and I both have snowshoes and microspikes. I also have 10 point crampons; she does not.

    My questions are: If we arrive at 9am on Saturday will there be parking at the loj trailhead? We've hiked out of there twice and struck out both times. If not, is South Meadows road passable down to the gate at this time of the year? We've twice parked at the west end of that road and walked (for Street/Nye and Wright/Algonquin) to the loj. It seems like the truck road would be not too much mileage if we can park at the East end.

    Assuming spikes for most of the hike with possible need for shoes on Tabletop (and maybe Phelps too). If we go without crampons will we be screwed on either Tabletop or Phelps?

    Big Slide is my fallback option.

    I'm at 54 on my NE115 so not a novice hiker but not as familiar with the Adirondacks.




  • #2
    The Loj lot is always a crap shoot after 8 am, but you'll probably be fine during this time of year. Regarding the Crampons, these are probably two of the peaks where you'll be least likely to ever need them.

    I dig your avatar. Do you Reddit?
    My mind was wandering like the wild geese in the west.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by greenmountaingoat View Post
      If not, is South Meadows road passable down to the gate at this time of the year? We've twice parked at the west end of that road and walked (for Street/Nye and Wright/Algonquin) to the loj. It seems like the truck road would be not too much mileage if we can park at the East end.
      South Meadow Lane is closed until next spring (according to DEC bulletin). When it's open, hiking to Marcy Dam from its east end is only a few tenths longer than the Van Hoevenberg but a pleasant walk that some people prefer to the other route. I suspect that you will be fine with spikes but I would recommend carrying snowshoes.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by FlyFishingandBeer View Post
        The Loj lot is always a crap shoot after 8 am, but you'll probably be fine during this time of year. Regarding the Crampons, these are probably two of the peaks where you'll be least likely to ever need them.

        I dig your avatar. Do you Reddit?
        Ok great. There's a great guide for the NH 4ks that has a short section on winter challenges or common approaches. Thanks for answering, it's great to have a resource.

        As for Reddit, no. I'm on VFTT a little bit for the NH 4ks, I'm on SoSH for my sports and I check in here for the Adirondacks. All three boards have good moderation.

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        • #5
          I haven't been to the High Peaks in the last two weeks (i.e. since the snow arrived) but be advised that a portion of the unmarked trail to Tabletop is a narrow rut (often quite muddy). I don't know how all of this week's precipitation will play out in the mountains, but cross your fingers that it falls as snow and not rain. Hope for the fluffy stuff from bottom to top but be prepared for mixed conditions including running water and ice. Good luck!
          Looking for Views!

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          • #6
            Just posting an update: Based on a trip report (from last Thursday or Friday morning) noting a lot of water on the table top path we decided to sleep in and tackle only Phelps on Saturday. The view was very...white. It's too bad, the summit looked like the view would have been very pretty otherwise. We barebooted all the way to about 0.4 from the summit then kept the spikes on until we got back down off the Phelps trail. The conditions were variably snowy and then wet, especially the bottom 0.3 of the Phelps trail. Parking was a breeze by the way- probably a pretty direct correlation to the weather being kind of crappy.

            The trail was pretty easy and we look forward to our next trip there- seems like a hike that the kids could tackle in the summer.

            From the weather we've been getting since then, I can only imagine that things have consolidated pretty well into snow and ice conditions by now.

            Thanks for the advice.

            Edit- by the way I did notice the trip planning subforum that I'll use next time.

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