Ascent of Mount Osceola-East Peak on 2015-07-23

Climber: Neil Benson

Others in Party:Molly Buckley
Connor Putnam
Eric Strack
Date:Thursday, July 23, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Mount Osceola-East Peak
    Location:USA-New Hampshire
    Elevation:4156 ft / 1266 m

Ascent Trip Report

We parked at the Greeley Ponds Trailhead off the Kancamagus Highway (NH 112) and started off on the Greeley Ponds Trail. The trail passed over gently sloping terrain before crossing two branches of the South Fork of the Hancock Branch at around 0.3 mi. Following the second crossing, the terrain got muddy and rocky but flat and was traversed by several bog bridges. At around .9 mi, the trail turned sharply left uphill, following an old logging road up gentle grades. We reached the junction with Mount Osceola Trail at 1.1 mi, and bore right onto the new trail. The hike quickly became very strenuous, ascending steep, boulder-strewn staircases all the way up to just a few hundred feet below the summit. Several fine viewpoints were presented on the way up East Osceola's north ridge. Looking down the mostly straight rock stairways and eroded gullies, obstructed but good viewpoints are often presented. On a slide traversed by the trail heading up East Osceola's north ridge, a spectacular view north and east is obtained. After the strenuous portion of the ascent ended just a few hundred feet below the summit, the terrain leveled out and the soil turned from a dirt to a sand makeup. The forests changed from birch and northern hardwoods to spruce. Just a short distance from the summit, we passed a good southeast view on the left side of the trail that has been opened up recently by a fir wave. We reached the summit cairn on the right side of the trail shortly thereafter. Another viewpoint on East Osceola that must be noted is about a quarter mile past and west of the summit, on the right side of the trail. It is an exposed boulder that affords a good view to the north and west.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2271 ft / 691 m
    Total Elevation Loss:2271 ft / 692 m
    Round-Trip Distance:7.2 mi / 11.6 km
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Bushwhack, Stream Ford, Scramble, Exposed Scramble, Rock Climb
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2236 ft / 681 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 2216 ft / 675 m; Extra: 20 ft / 6m
    Loss on way in:20 ft / 6 m
    Distance:3.6 mi / 5.8 km
    Route:Greeley Ponds Trail-Mount Osceola Trail
    Start Trailhead:Greeley Ponds Trailhead  1940 ft / 591 m
    Time:2 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:2251 ft / 686 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 2216 ft / 675 m; Extra: 35 ft / 10m
    Gain on way out:35 ft / 10 m
    Distance:3.6 mi / 5.8 km
    Route:Greeley Ponds Trail-Mount Osceola Trail
    End Trailhead:Greeley Ponds Trailhead  1940 ft / 591 m
    Time:1 Hours 
Ascent Part of Trip: Osceolas - July 23, 2015 (0 nights total away from roads)

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Mount Osceola-East Peak2015-07-232271 ft / 692 m
2Mount Osceola2015-07-231095 ft / 334 m
Total Trip Gain: 3366 ft / 1026 m    Total Trip Loss: 4706 ft / 1434 m

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