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Mt Adams, Mt Madison
July 21, 2001

Route: Lowe's Path, The Quay, Gray Knob Trail,
Airline Trail, Gulfside Trail, Osgood Trail,
Valley Way
Map:
 
Elevation: Log Cabin - 3263 ft
Gray Knob - 4400 ft
Adams 4 - 5355 ft
Vertical Climb: 5172 ft
Distance: 10.6 miles
Who Went: Paul (solo)

As has become the routine for me, I got up at 4:00 AM and left home at 4:30 to make the drive up to the Northern Presidentials. After an uneventful drive, I arrived at Lowe's Store at 7:45, paid the $1.00 parking fee, then headed across the road to the trailhead.

Just beyond the trailhead sign was a historical marker giving a bit of trail history. Lowe's Path was built by Charles Lowe and Dr William Nowell in 1875 - 1876. The people who run Lowe's Store are descendants of Charles Lowe. The store was built in the early 1900s. They have pictures of its construction on the wall in the store.

After crossing the old railroad bed and ducking under the power lines, the trail entered the woods at an easy grade. It was a good start for a long hike. Although it promised to be a hot day, the woods were still cool and nice, with numerous flowers growing near the trail. It was quite pleasant except for the mosquitoes, which were very annoying if I stopped for a minute. Unfortunately, I forgot the repellent. 

The trail continued upward at easy to moderate grades. I could even take my eyes off my feet long enough to look up at the woods during stretches that were relatively free of rocks and roots. Not too long after I passed the junction with the Link Trail, it began to get a little steeper, then abruptly became extremely steep, climbing up several smooth ledges. After a couple of especially steep pitches, I reached the Log Cabin, an open front shelter run by the Randolph Mountain Club (RMC). A couple from Quebec was resting there on their way down. They had spent the night at the RMC cabin, Crag Camp, which is perched on the edge of King Ravine. After they left, I rested a few more minutes, then headed back up the trail.

Trailhead sign. Lowe's Path begins almost directly across Rt 2 from Lowe's Store. You have to park at the store as there's no parking at the actual trailhead. They charge a dollar a day, which is not a bad deal.

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Lowe's Path historical marker. Lowe's Path has a long history. The family that runs Lowe's Store are descendants of the Charles Lowe who built the trail.

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Lowe's Path just below the Log Cabin. The trail is moderate and easy to hike until it begins to get steep around this spot.

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The Log Cabin. Run by the RMC, this open Alaskan trapper style building has a sleeping shelf and a very nice porch you can sit out on. 

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Map

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