We woke up and headed out early today in hopes of beating some of the rain. It was misting and cloudy as we ascended up towards the Whitecap Range. We climbed up Gulf Hagas Mountain under some light rain and wind. It continued to sprinkle off and on as we made our way through the range. It was considerably easier hiking than yesterday, even with the precipitation. It was raw and cold though, so we didn’t really stop much and just pushed on quickly. We climbed Whitecap itself before lunch, which was a pretty easy climb with just a few minor rocks and roots to hike over. We hit a point though at the summit that was above treeline and it was just nuts up there. Do not go above treeline when it’s rainy and windy. This was similar to when we got caught in the Whites on Franconia Ridge in the storm. It was intensely gusty and sleeting sideways. Thankfully we only had maybe a tenth or two or mileage to traverse above treeline. The gusts were definitely stronger than the 60mph ones we faced in the Whites, as they really knocked us around and almost off our feet several times. It’s craziness how bad it gets. The other thing that was a bummer is that there is supposed to be our first view of Katahdin from up there. We had about 10 feet of visibility. We descended out of that nastiness and grabbed lunch at the nearest lean-to, then hiked on another 4 miles to the next lean-to and called it a day around 3. We dried out and relaxed under the tarp by reading, enjoying some hot chocolate, and napping. It was a good ending to a crappy day. The weather was so dreary all day I didn’t even take a single picture today.
Tomorrow we have a smoother looking day with nice weather predicted. Looking forward to some nice weather again for our last few days out here.
Vital stats for Thursday, September 11th :
Mountains remaining – 1
Miles hiked today – 14.1
Mood – good, dried out and relaxed
Physical state – normal
Smell – month old congealed beef ramen noodles
Song stuck in my head – Like A Rolling Stone by Bob Dylan, as covered by The Rolling Stones