Mount Monadnock

Date of Hike: 12/16/12

White Dot / White Cross Trail: 4.0 miles (1,800 elevation gain)

Trip Report:
- Sunday we decided to head up to Jaffrey New Hampshire and hike one of the most popular mountains in the United Stats, Mount Monadnock.  I was excited since I haven't been on Monadnock since I was a little kid and didn't remember it.
- Joining us on today's hike was Kelsey and Brian, who was happy not be carrying a huge pack today!  Also tagging along was Alton's friend Alison.
- The weather was not cooperating as it started to snow just as we started our hike at 11:30 a.m..  It was a very late start and I had a few worries with the weather and the inexperience of the group but we headed up the trail with high spirits.
- The snow fell at a good pace and quickly coated the frozen ground, rocks, and the ice.  Everyone put on their light traction soon after hooking onto the White Cross Trail.
- There were many hikers descending as we headed up into the clouds out of the woods.  It became very windy and slick as we made the final push up to the summit.  Just below the summit I slipped and slid about five feet on a rock slab but was fine.  At the summit it became extremely uncomfortable with snow and sleet pelting our faces.
- We quickly descended with Alton leading the the trail.  Luckily I was behind everyone and found a cairn and lead us back on the trail, except for Kelsey who decided to bushwhack back to the trail.  For a moment we had no idea where she was and started to get a little nervous.  We almost lost the trail again right before it went back into the woods but Alton found it and we made it back to the safety of the tree cover.
- The hike back through the woods was fun as we all joked around as we carefully navigated through the snow and ice back to the trailhead which had about two inches of snow, it had none when we started.
- It was an interesting hike to say the least, we all made it out safely I don't think the others realized how close we were to getting in some trouble.  I probably should have turned us around, no one was familiar with the trail around the summit cone and the bad weather and visibility made it difficult for us at times.  It's another lesson learned for me and just a reminder that no matter how long I have hiked I'm always still learning
- As for Mount Monadnock, I like the set up (except for the $5 per person fee) they give you a little map and it's a very clean trailhead and the trails we used were very nice.  I can't wait to go back and hike it on a clear day so I can enjoy the views from the top!

 Park Headquarters
 White Dot Trail
 White Cross Trail
 White Cross Trail
I had a little fun...should have taken my own advice!! 
 White Cross Trail
 Alton and Alison having fun!
 White Cross / White Dot Trail Junction
 Ascending the White Dot Trail
 Final push to the summit
 In the clouds on Mount Monadnock's Summit
 Descending off the summit cone
Great visibility on the White Dot Trail 
Getting out of the wind at the big cairn
Alton's pig tails frozen as a rope!!

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