Ascent of Burke Mountain on 2020-08-31

Climber: Gustav Sexauer

Others in Party:Katrina
Date:Monday, August 31, 2020
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Burke Mountain
    Elevation:3260 ft / 993 m

Ascent Trip Report

After Katrina was done with work, I got to driving and she got to sleeping. We pulled into the lot at Burke Mountain after two minor wrong turns. There's a sign in Lyndonville that says to go straight for Burke at a T intersection...

There was one other car at the trailhead kiosk in the lower lot, but it left while we were getting ready. The trail started out mellow and then slowly got steeper. There was a wide variety of trees and a few fungi. It was a very pretty forest. We weren't expecting the junctions with the Kirby Connector since it wasn't on the trailhead map, but we were able to continue following the Red Trail. Once we passed the CCC Road, we got onto the Blue Trail which took us up to a shelter, but first there was one rocky section with a vista. Very nice views on this sunny day. From the shelter we had to drop into a saddle and then popped out at a huge cul-du-sac, that had very skilled donut marks, that we crossed to find the trail to an accessible vista. If you are in a wheelchair, this is the spot for you! A very nice vista a short roll from the pavement. Then we continued on and followed signs for the summit and then the fire tower. We scaled the tower, but Katrina was extra scared. A second tower full of antennas was adjacent to the fire tower so you couldn't ignore your altitude over the ground. The fire tower also extends far above the treetops. We had clear views of the microwave buildings on East Mountain and the glacial wonder of Lake Willoughby. We then spotted a benchmark across the trail on a rocky outcrop. We thought we touched the top at the bottom of the tower stairs, but perhaps we did not. We went back down and took a left on the Upper Profile Trail. This trail turned around and brought us to the summit. We sunbathed there for a few minutes before heading down.

We finished the Under Profile Trail and then took the Blue Trail back to where the Red terminates. We took the Red down, which was steep dirt, as opposed to the stone steps on the similar length Blue Trail. At one point we popped out into the ski run to see the view and saw four parasailers playing around quite near us. Fun to see. Then it was back to the base, but not before we heard a big rustle in the woods. We never identified what it was.

Burke Mountain really impressed. I didn't think there were many great peaks I hadn't hiked in Vermont (sure there are good ones), but this one really stood up and exceeded expectations.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2215 ft / 674 m
    Total Elevation Loss:2215 ft / 674 m
    Round-Trip Distance:6.7 mi / 10.8 km
    Grade/Class:Class 1
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2145 ft / 653 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 2095 ft / 638 m; Extra: 50 ft / 15m
    Loss on way in:50 ft / 15 m
    Distance:3.3 mi / 5.4 km
    Route:Red - Blue Trails
    Start Trailhead:Burke Mountain Lower Lot  1165 ft / 355 m
    Time:2 Hours 2 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:2165 ft / 659 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 2095 ft / 638 m; Extra: 70 ft / 21m
    Gain on way out:70 ft / 21 m
    Distance:3.3 mi / 5.4 km
    Route:Profile - Blue - Red Trails
    End Trailhead:Burke Mountain Lower Lot  1165 ft / 355 m
    Time:1 Hours 58 Minutes

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