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Mt Monroe, Mt Eisenhower, Mt Pierce
June 23, 2005

Route: Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail, Crawford Path,
Mt Monroe Loop, Mt Eisenhower Loop,
Webster Cliff Trail, Mizpah Cutoff
Map: map.jpg (198606 bytes)
 
Elevation: Lakes of the Clouds Hut 5050 ft
Mt Monroe 5384 ft
Mt Eisenhower 4780 ft
Mt Pierce 4310 ft
Mizpah Hut 3777 ft
Vertical Climb: 3977 ft
Distance: 11.7 miles
Who Went: Paul, Muffin

I had been thinking of doing just Mts Pierce and Eisenhower, but I decided that we might as well add Monroe to the list considering that the weather was great and the days were long. So, as usual, Muffin and I got up at 4:00 AM and headed out for a long day above treeline.

I parked at the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trailhead and we headed out for my third, and Muffin's second climb up this trail. There were quite a few lupines growing along the edging of the parking lot. The first mile is relatively flat, with numerous small brook crossings and a few minor ups and downs but we quickly arrived at the junction with the old trail from the Cog Railway base station.

The trail followed the river for about a mile, gaining altitude slowly. It was easy walking, and we could smell the spruce and fir trees in the woods. We passed the Herbert Judson Young Memorial, which honors a member of the Dartmouth Outing Club who died near this spot from exposure in 1928. 

We soon arrived at Gem Pool, a small pool with water cascading down from above. This spot is appropriately named for two reasons - the spot is a real gem, and the pool is like an emerald the way it reflects all the greenery of the forest surrounding this the little glen.  It's a nice place to rest on a hot day, so we stopped for a couple of minutes to eat a quick snack. My camera was fogging up a lot so the picture of the Gem Pool waterfall didn't come out good, but I took another picture from a totally different angle that did.

Above Gem Pool, the trail gets extremely steep, gaining 1000 feet in 2/10 of a mile, and then another 700 feet in the next 2/10 of a mile. In the middle of the steep section, there's a side path that leads about 1/10 of a mile to the gorge, where two thin ribbons of water cascade almost straight down into another pool.

Lupines. The lupine is a common flower in the lower elevations of the Mt Washington valley.

lupines.jpg (155333 bytes)

Lakes of the Cloud Hut sign. They probably take this sign down when the hut is closed for the winter.

lakes sign.jpg (140071 bytes)

Herbert Judson Young Memorial. This plaques honors a member of the Dartmouth Outing Club who died near this spot from exposure in 1928.

memorial.jpg (145810 bytes)

Gem Pool. This is a nice relaxing place to stop and rest on a hot day. We only stayed a couple of minutes to eat a snack.

gem pool.jpg (118289 bytes)

Twin waterfalls. About halfway up the steep section, there's a short side trail to a spot that overlooks these two tall thin waterfalls.

waterfall 1.jpg (189470 bytes)

waterfall 2.jpg (160166 bytes)

Map

  Monroe-Eisenhower-Pierce page: 

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