Muffin and I set off to look for the
campsite that the caretaker mentioned. It was about 2/10 of a mile
and 200 vertical feet up the Carter-Moriah Trail, just beyond the
edge of the Forest Protection zone. We found it with little
difficulty and I set up our tent in a small clearing next to some
huge boulders. An even more sheltered area lay just behind this spot
in a small alcove among the boulders, but it looked a bit damp and
uninviting, and seemed to have been used as a bathroom area.
After camp was set up, we rested for an
hour or so, and then hiked back down to the hut with our cooking
equipment and water bottles to have supper on the benches outside
the hut while checking out who was staying there. There were a
couple of families, one with a friendly young girl who liked
exploring among the nearby blueberry bushes. While we were eating, a
large group of teenage boys, who seemed to be on a summer camp
outing, started straggling in. They had reservations and wandered
off to find their bunks.
When we were finished eating, I sat
inside the hut for a while, then I filled up our water bottles and
we headed back to our campsite. I was looking forward to reading in
the tent. It's not bad to talk with people for a while at a hut, but
it's nice to have a quiet secluded spot to return to.
The next morning, we got up early, ate
a quick cold breakfast, and packed our stuff up. I wanted to get a
reasonably early start so we could reach the Imp Campsite early
enough to get a tentsite. Loaded down
again with a heavy pack, it was a strenuous start to the day,
right from the first step. But we gained altitude quickly on the
steep trail, and before I knew it, we reached the Pulpit Rock
outlook. This great spot is up a short side path, simply marked
When we got there, I looked down at
Muffin's feet. Once again, she had failed to speak up, and her two
front booties were missing. At this point, I had no intention of
climbing back down to look for them. I took her rear booties off and
stuffed them in her backpack, then sprayed her feet with some pad
toughener I had brought and hoped for the best.
The views back down to the notch were
magnificent, providing an interesting contrast to the same scene
viewed the previous day from Wildcat A.
The rest of the climb was uneventful. We
arrived at the broad summit of Carter Dome in just under book time,
and my first order of business was to take a picture of Muffin
sitting by the summit cairn.
our tent at Carter Notch. Our campsite was in a small clearing
next to some huge boulders about 200 vertical feet up the Carter-Moriah