Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Bonds 3-18-14

Bondcliff,  Mt. Bond,  West Bond 3/18/2014

 23 miles,  19 hours,  04:30 - 23:30

Hike track posted on wikiloc @ http://en.wikiloc.com/wikiloc/view.do?id=6468693
This was my last official winter hike of the season. I bagged 3 more peaks before the Spring Equinox bringing my winter list to 25 of the 48 New Hampshire 4Ks (14 this year).   I had originally planned to make this an overnight hike and camp out at the Guyot lean-to just past West Bond.  But, I arrived at Bondcliff earlier than I expected so I figured I'd do Bond and West Bond and return to Bondcliff then camp out on the way back down. As it turned out, it took me so long to get to West Bond that I probbaly should have stayed the night at Gouyot like I had when I did the Bonds from the North in 2011 . However, I had dropped a lot of my gear on Bondcliff, including my tent and sleeping bag, so that wasn't an option.  After returning to Bondcliff and grabbing a bite to eat, melting some snow to resupply my water I starting back down just before the sun set over the Franconia range.  Since it was basically all down hill from there and not being sure of the forecast, I just kept going  and returned to the Lincoln Woods trailhead before midnight, making this my longest one  day hike yet.

Pictures with captions;

  Hike track with elevation Profile (downloaded to  http://en.wikiloc.com/wikiloc/view.do?id=6468693 )


 Entire track with waypoints.
Upper elevation section of track with peaks identified.

I started at Lincoln woods trailhead on the Kank at ~0430. I didn't start taking any pictures until 4 hours later.  This pic shows how well defined the trail is here.  I had already unloaded and stashed my pulk at this point. I used a new pulk I built for this hike after finding out on the Owls Head hike that the pulk I had made from my granson's sled was too wide for these deeper and narrow trails packed trails.  Pictures of my new pulk are near the end of this post.


Just starting get a few peeks of the peaks. Thats probably Mt. Bond

The only real scramble on the whole hike.  Only 20 or so feet but it was deep snow and a bit tough in snow shoes.  I should have taken my snow shoes off to ascend it.

  Just got to the top of the short scramble, turned around, and WOW what a view. I''m back on top of the world (or at least New Hampshire). The snowed peaks are Lincoln and Lafayette (I believe). The long wooded mountain in front of it is Owls Head (my previous hike)
   Mt Garfield (I believe) to the right of Lafayette.
Looking back toward Mt Loon (ski trails)

Looking back down the short scramble.
   Very near the top now. This picture looks like there is high wind here - but there was none at all - tips of the trees are just frozen in place from the prevailing winds.

  Top of Bond Cliff.  Mt Bond to the right and West Bond on the left - my next 2 stops.
  Bond Cliff.   No one around to take a picture standing on the overhanging boulder this time.

  What a perfect weather day to be up here and I have it all to myself. That's Mt Washington to the right of Mt Bond.

   This is where I had to break trail going up  Mt. Bond. It looks like the trail goes straight up here, but that lead to a mine field of spruce traps, I had to back track and found that the hardpacked trail under the new snow actually hangs a sharp right here.


Spruce flavored icycles made great snacks as I walked.

   This shows how important it is to stay on the packed trail. My pole on the right just inches off the trail still hasnt hit bottom yet.  There were long sections were the trail had been blown in and I'd have to probe with my poles to locate it.
    More blown in trail to break. This is why it took me so long to get up and over Mt Bond.
Summit pic on Mt. Bond. Mt Washington to the lower left. What a great weather day.  The goggles were only for the snow glare.  I'd end up hanging my jacket on a spruce branch on the way to W. Bond  and picking it up on my way back.

Geographic survey marker for Mt. Bond

Lincoln and Lafayette on left and West Bond on the right from Mt Bond
Looking back at Bondcliff from Mt Bond. 

   Bondcliff trail continues down the north west side of Bond.  A spur off on the left continues to West Bond.  A bit further along is a spur to Guyot camp site . The trail then continues North to either the Twin Mountains or Mt Zealand.
Bondcliff trail  coming off Mt Bond was also pretty much blown-in. However, from the W. Bond Spur junction it was pretty much broken in by fresh snowshoe tracks all the way to W. Bond probably from hikers coming from Zealand.
West Bond peak from the col between Bond and W Bond.

Almost there.

West Bond summit. Lookin NE toward Mt Washington.

 View toward the small col between Mt Bond and Bond Cliff. 
Bond Cliff from W. Bond.  I was there over 2 hours ago and it will take me another 2 hours to get back up and over Mt Bond and to Bondcliff.
W. Bond summit picture. Yes I'm as tired as I look and the hike is only half over.
Bond from W. Bond
Mt Washington from West Bond.  This is the first time I had been on W. Bond during daylight. When I did my overnight hike to the Bonds from Zealand (Nov-2012) I had gotton up early from Guyot campsite and did W. Bond in the dark.
Zoom in  of Mt .Washington from W. Bond
Back on Mt. Bond

Still heading back to Bondcliff from Bond.
Back on Bond Cliff. I took a long break to melt snow for water and a cup of soup.
Snow to 1 pint of water in 1 minute.
Sun just starting to set  behind Franconia Ridge. I'm packing up and heading down so I can get back on the well defined trail before dark.

Tried to get a flash picture of my pulk but my batteries were low so this was by headlamp.
the following pics of my pulk were taken the next day while unloading my gear.

The Pex piping over the rope is so that the pulk will not run into me when going down hill
Sled from Benny's; $10.95,  stainless steel eyebolts, washers, and nuts; $20.00. Pex tubing from Home Depot; $5.95, Bungie straps from JobLot; $2.50.  Rope $3.50, going 11 miles on a 23 mile hike without a 40 lb pack on my back - Priceless !

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