Monday, June 18, 2007

Whiteface #27

The McCrillis Trail is no walk in the park. Overgrown, blaze-less,marked by blow-downs and engulfed in pure wilderness. Leaving Flat Mountain Pond Trail, a very nice wide gravel road from the Intervale/Whiteface Rd., the McCrillis Trail becomes simply unfathomable. Dense, thick with brush and poison ivy, it is a trail to become lost upon. I went in thinking this would be a fine trail to recommend to others , but I wouldn't even recommend this to anyone. Nope. Reading the description in the AMC, the trail is described as "lightly used."It is lightly used- by mice, and no one else.There was a lot of poop on the trail: bear poop, moose poop. I was knee deep in poop. I became lost on the trail a few times and had to turn back and re-trace my steps to re-claim the blazeless trail. I did not run into a single hiker on this trail all day. So there- we shall update the AMC guide to state that the the trail is indeed lightly used, by mice and other woodland creatures. But not by people.

With the tons of luck that I seem to seep at every pore, I ran into a father and son team from Andover, MA. This was indeed a lucky break, for it was with dreaded anxiety that I began planning my descent of the McCrillis Trail back to the car. They offered to take Ruby and I back to our parking spot from their car parked at Ferncroft Rd. I had at first avoided the Blueberry Ledge Trail becaue of the steep ledges. I was afraid Ruby would not be able to scramble up these challenging ledges on the south summit. After a few snapshots on the Whiteface "summit"- which appears to be somewhere smack dab in the middle of the Rollins Trail, we descended. It was a great day all around, and I was so appreciative of the company and the ride . As it was a warm day, the boy, a 14 year old scout, submerged himself in the cold Wonalancet River . Ruby joined him, quite happily, and I also dunked my head. The threat of thunderstorms seemed to pass, and the day cleared of the haze and muggies that had brought in the mosquitos.