Mt. Hale: The Perfect Rainy Day Hike
Mt. Hale, standing at 4055 ft, is regarded as one of the easier 4000 footers in NH. It is a short, out-and-back, 4.6 mile hike via the Hale Brook Trail. There aren't really any views from the summit, making it a great hike for a rainy or cloudy day. The peak used to have a fire tower that yielded nice views, but since that was taken down the trees have overgrown any possible sights.
Friday started off a little bit slow because of the morning rain showers. At first I wasn't sold on hiking because of the forecasted thundershowers, but it seemed to clear up later in the morning. Lucy also couldn't come for this one because she has been recovering from hiking Cannon. The quick of her nails bled quite a bit that day, so she will be taking a break for a few weeks. My friend and I were at the trailhead beginning our hike at 10:32, a later start than usual but okay seeing as it's a short hike. The trail was a steady but moderate incline with nothing too steep or rocky. There was no scrambling and it was fairly straightforward. We reached the summit at 11:48.
At the summit there was a large cairn, but other than that the fog was too thick to really see anything. It was surrounded with trees, so even if there had been less fog we wouldn't have been able to see a view. We stopped for around 20 minutes for a water break and then headed back down.
We saw a few other people along the way headed to Zealand, but it was pretty quiet overall. We made it back to the trailhead around 1:25. It was a fairly uneventful hike, but I was testing out my new pack so it was good for figuring out what adjustments were needed. The pack was 23.3 lbs, so it was good to see how that kind of weight effected my hiking abilities. It slowed me down quite a bit and was very top heavy so I know I need to adjust the way I pack it. Each hike leading up to the Pemi loop has been a learning experience, this short one included!
Mt. Hale [4055 ft, 4.6 mi, 2:53] via. Hale Brook Trail
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