Ascent of Owls Head on 2013-11-09

Climber: Kaerstin Quinlan

Others in Party:Dan Quinlan
Date:Saturday, November 9, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Owls Head
    Location:USA-New Hampshire
    Elevation:4025 ft / 1226 m

Ascent Trip Report

Owl’s Head Mountain
8:10am 34degrees Sun starting to peek through the clouds
Today is the long walk to Owl’s head. Before doing the ADK 46, this would seem like a horribly long hike just for a treed peak. But many of the 46 have a long hike like this one before you actually start hiking ‘up’ the mountain.
Mom, Dad and I got a pretty early start hoping we will spend minimal time in the dark as the sun goes down pretty early this time of year.
The Lincoln Woods trail is like a hikers Interstate Highway, wide and fast! We got to the Black Pond trail at 9:00am and now we start on a real trail that twists and turns toward Black Pond. We got to black pond at 9:30. Dad did the bushwhack a few years ago in the middle of summer and did not enjoy it at all. But since all the foliage is now down, he figured the shortcut would be easier – so we chose to do it again. Although it isn’t a long bushwhack it still is slow going but we made it back out to the Lincoln Brook trail at 10:35am.
We ran into difficulty crossing the brooks that we did not consider. This time of year the spray freezes on the rocks so crossings were VERY difficult. The final crossing of Lincoln brook almost had us heading home. We spent about an hour going up and down the brook looking for a safe way across – we were just about to give up when we spotted a downed tree that went across the entire brook. So the hike could continue.
We reached the Owl’s Head herd path at 12:40pm. The slide was somewhat frozen so the loose part wasn’t that loose. But toward the top there was several places ice had formed so we needed to be very careful at time. Because of the trouble we had crossing the brook several times, we are quite a bit behind the schedule Dad had made. We are on the summit of Owls head at 2:00pm. He figures we’ll be in the dark earlier than we had hoped, but still we take some time to have lunch before heading back down at 2:10pm. We are at the bottom of the slide at 2:55 and I am a bit worried about having to cross the river on the tree again. But Dad stays close and we hold each other as we cross.
As expected it got darker than our original plan and the sun was gone in the middle of the bushwhack. Then Dad led us to the wrong side of the pond and into a swamp. Took us a while and help from some campers who saw our lights to get back on the trail. We were back on the trail at 5:55pm. It feels good to be on the trail, but there is still a long way to walk. We got back to the car at 7:40pm. A long day for sure, but we are dry!
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3700 ft / 1127 m
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack, Stream Ford, Snow on Ground, Exposed Scramble
    Weather:Cool, Calm, Overcast
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3700 ft / 1127 m
    Distance:16.7 mi / 26.9 km
    Route:Lincoln woods, Black Pond, Bushwhack, Lincoln Pond
    Start Trailhead:Route 112 - Lincoln Woods  325 ft / 99 m
    Time:11 Hours 30 Minutes
Descent Statistics
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Kaerstin Quinlan
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