NE 4,000 Footers
NE 100 Highest
NH 4,000 Footers
NH 52 With A View
NH Belknap Range
NH Ossipee 10
Explanation of Ratings
Ossipee Mountains Notice
Wyman, ME, Dead River, ME
Trailheads, measurements, times, distances, and maps are all approximate and relative to the hike(s) as shown below.
Looking up the Fire Warden's Trail on the way to Avery Peak
With a nice day forecasted for the end of winter, we decided to head up to Maine for the Bigelows. Learning from last winter, we opted not to take the Appalachian Trail - rather, we drove in Stratton Brook Pond Road and snowshoed along the snowmobile trail, bringing us to the 2nd summer trailhead faster and with less effort than the AT.
Crossing the outlet of the pond was potentially tricky, as the running water was a little high. Instead, we took a wide route on the ice on the pond - probably one of the last days this would be possible this year.
The Fire Warden's Trail had set up overnight, resulting in a firm, but somewhat uneven walk. Eventually reaching the col, we headed up to Avery Peak first. Snowshoes provided adequate traction as we worked our way around the alpine zone to the highpoint. While there were excellent views in all directions, Mt. Katahdin was a stunning image to the northeast.
After a lunch break near the summit, we headed back into the col and up to West Peak, climbing over a very impressive snow drift along the way. From the summit of West Peak, we had excellent views of both Mt. Washington and Mt. Katahdin - a very unique vista.
With temperatures climbing, the trail softened considerably for the descent, resulting in a few full-snowshoe postholes. Nonetheless, it was fairly smooth sailing. The ride back to New Hampshire, on the other hand, wasn't - for nearly an hour, we found ourselves stopping for dozens of deer, including one herd that had to have been 50 or more.
The start of the Firewarden's Trail at Stratton Brook Pond
Looking up the Appalachian Trail on the way to Avery Peak
Looking over Flagstaff Lake at Mt. Katahdin from Avery Peak
The Appalachian Trail on the way to Bigelow Mountain's West Peak
Looking east from West Peak
Back to Bigelow Mountain - Avery Peak Profile
Back to Bigelow Mountain - West Peak Profile