Ascent to Katahdin-Pamola Peak on 2012-09-22

Climber: Shelley Cheng

Date:Saturday, September 22, 2012
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Point Reached:Katahdin - Pamola Peak
    Elevation:4919 ft / 1499 m
    Remaining Elevation:349 ft / 106 m (2% left to go)

Ascent Trip Report

We started off at 5:30am on the Helon Taylor Trail, just before sunrise, through the rugged woods of Maine, and it was lovely to see everything wake up slowly. However, as we began ascending the ridge line toward Pamola Peak, the clouds started gathering. Before long it was rainy, and the boulder field began very slippery in no time. To add insult to the injury, wind started to pick up and was soon threatening to blow us around. We certainly were not going to risk the Knife Edge in these conditions, and began descending via Dudley Trail.
That proved to be a ridiculously difficult descent, for it was the most direct--and therefore steepest--of all the paths down towards Chimney Pond. The boulders were the size of cars and very slick in the rain, and it was just unrelentingly steep. The clouds did break for a second to offer a glimpse of the valley and its golden foliage--Heaven itself could not be more beautiful--but then the rain poured down again. From Chimney Pond it was a flat, but sodden, 3 mile retreat out to the car. We were cold and miserable, but aching to come back, only in fairer weather.
Summary Total Data
    Distance:8.2 mi / 13.2 km
    Grade/Class:Class 2
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Scramble
    Nights Spent:0 nights away from roads
    Weather:Raining, Cool, Windy, Low Clouds
Ascent Statistics
    Distance:2.9 mi / 4.7 km
    Route:Helon Taylor Trail
    Trailhead:Roaring Brook Parking  
Descent Statistics
    Distance:5.3 mi / 8.5 km
    Route:Dudley Trail - Chimney Pond Trail

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