Monday, November 30, 2009

Dorset Mountain

STATE: Vermont
DESTINATION: Dorset Mountain
ELEVATION: 3775 Ft
TRAIL: Unmaintained snowmobile trail
DISTANCE: 7 Miles
ELEVATION GAIN: 2275 Ft
HIKING TIME: 2 Hr 45 min
SEASON: Late fall
DATE: 11/29/09
WEATHER: 40 Degrees - clear skies
MAP: (Dorset)



DESCRIPTION: Dorset Hollow road splits into upper hollow and lower hollow then rejoins continuing North as Tower road. I didn't dare drive much futher along the class 6 road than approx 0.25 miles past the last houses at 1500 Ft elevation. Someone with 4 wheel drive and braver than myself could probably continue another mile to 1800 Ft.

From parking the road gradually increases elevation and continues North West approximately 1 mile to a Y intersection. Continue to the right past presumably a hunting camp at 1900 Ft. The trail steepens here and gains 1100 Ft in 1 mile. The trail is relatively easy to follow although contains several blowdowns. At 3000 Ft you'll encounter another Y intersection at the Rutland / Bennington county line shown on the map. Continue East / North East along the summit ridge another 1 mile. Continuing straight this direction is the most gradual approach however there are a few steep trails to the right leading up the steep slopes of South Dorset. I chose one of the steeper approaches and hit the summit ridge at the col between Dorset and South Dorset. Dorset peak is approx 0.3 miles to the North East.

TRAIL DISTANCES:
*note - trail descriptions are close approximations.

Parking - Hunting cabin = 1.0 Mi
Hunting cabin - 3000 Ft ridge - 1.0 Mi
3000 Ft Ridge - Dorset Summit - 1.3 Mi

HIKING TIMES:
Parking - 9:00 AM
Cabin - 9:20 AM
3000 Ft - 10:00 AM
Dorset Summit - 10:35 AM
South Summit - 10:55 AM
3000 Ft - 11:15 AM
Parking - 11:45 AM

NOTES / COMMENTS: The snow line started at 1700 Ft and quickly increased in depth reaching 4-5 inches at 3000 Ft elevation and 8-10 inches along the summit ridge. The mountain is peppered with trails but no club or organization will take responsibility for maintaining them therefore they are shown on few maps. The mile from the cabin to the 3000 Ft ridge was brutally steep. Winter conditions also made for a slower pace. The col between summits was covered with evidence of active moose.







Monday, November 16, 2009

Bread Loaf and Wilson

STATE: Vermont
DESTINATION: Bread Loaf / Mt. Wilson
ELEVATION: 3835 Ft / 3790 Ft
TRAIL: Skyline trail - Long Trail
DISTANCE: 9.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN: 1865 Ft
HIKING TIME: 3.5 Hours
SEASON: Late Fall
DATE: 11/15/09
WEATHER: 55 degrees, overcast
MAP: (Bread Loaf) (Wilson)

DESCRIPTION: Skyline trail was damp but in pristine condition after yesterdays rains. Encountered a couple muddy spots and the river crossings were swollen but nothing a hop, skip and jump couldn't fix. A very gradual incline through a open hardwood forest as the woods transitioned to spruce views remained open making for an enjoyable hike. LT was full of puddles and the section from Bread Loaf to the Emily Proctor Shelter was an ankle deep stream.
TRAIL DISTANCES:
Skyline trail - Long Trail = 2.5 Mi
Long Trail - Bread Loaf Summit = 1.0 Mi
Bread Loaf Summit - Emily Procter Shelter = 0.75 Mi
Emily Procter Shelter - Wilson Summit = 0.35 Mi
HIKING TIMES:
Trail Head - 8:15 AM
Skyline Tr / LT junction - 9:15 AM
Bread Loaf Summit - 9:40 AM
Emily Procter Shelter - 10:00 AM
Mt. Wilson Summit - 10:10 AM
Emily Procter Shelter - 10:20 AM
Bread Loaf Summit - 10:35 AM
LT / Skyline Trail junction - 11:00 AM
Trail head - 11:40 AM

NOTES / COMMENTS: I carried winter gear but probably could have hiked in shorts and a T-shirt (slight exaggeration). Encountered zero snow or ice. The trails were almost completely wooded with a few outlooks along the way. The sum briefly peeked through the clouds as I traversed the summit ridge and started to mist on descent. A great hike.