Here Kitty Kitty : Wildcat D and A Peaks

Date of Hike: 3/16/15

Smelly Cat Ski Trail: 2.5 miles  /  Wildcat Ridge Trail: 2.6 miles  /  Nineteen-Mile Brook Trail 3.5 miles
Total Miles: 8.6 (2,900 feet elevation gained)

Trip Report:
- Our original plan was for a group Presidential Range Traverse for Gryffin the Golden Retriever dog.  However, NOAA's weather forecast was all over the place with the wind speeds, and the group backed out the night before and I didn't feel comfortable enough to head up above treeline.  Even though it was windy in the morning it would have made for a fine Presi day as wind speeds never went over 40 MPH on Washington during the day.
- Instead, we headed over to the Wildcats for Whitney's second round finish on Wildcat A Peak.  It's the same peak she finished her first round on during the first day of winter on December 22nd, all the while completing a single-season winter round in between.  Quite a winter she's had!
- We started off by hiking up the ski trails on Wildcat Mountain, there's a $10 uphill access fee to walk the ski slopes which can be purchased at the main building when it opens at 8 a.m.
- The views were amazing as we hiked up the Polecat ski trails.  I enjoy hiking up the ski trails because of the open views, but I like descending them more since the views are in front of you.  Hiking the ski trails is the easiest way to gain Wildcat Ridge which is about 2.5 miles from the bottom of the ski area.  From the top of the slopes we hooked onto the Wildcat Ridge Trail and broke trail through a few inches of fresh fluffy snow.  It was a great hike across the ridge over the hogbacks of C and B peaks in between D and A Peaks.
- From Wildcat A we made the steep descent down to Carter Notch.  We passed four hikers heading up, two of which missed the sharp left turn and got dead ended and another two slowly making their way up to the slide crossing.  None of the four had their snowshoes on which we found puzzling after the snowfall from the night before.
- Anyway, after passing by them we quickly made it to the Nineteen- Mile Trail junction and enjoyed the nice easy descent through a winter wonderland back to the trailhead, making it back to the car just in time for lunch!

Early morning at Wildcat Ski Area

Heading up the ski trail and taking in the views

Sun rising above Wildcat Ridge as we make our way up the slopes

Looking to the north at the Carters

Whitney heads into the sun while skiers enjoying morning runs

Looking across Pinkham Notch over to Mount Adams and Madison

Top of the ski slopes

Northern Presidential Range

Hooking onto the Wildcat Ridge Trail

Whitney breaking trail!

Mount Washington 

 Whitney takes in the views

 The ravines of Mount Washington (Tuckerman, Raymond Cataract, Huntington)

 Wildcat A Peak

 Heading down to Carter Notch

 Nineteen-Mile Brook Trail


Route for the day, click here for more info


  1. Anyone who wouldn't wear snowshoes up to A Peak when they have to break trail is out of their mind!

    1. That's what I said when we passed them :)