Monday, August 5, 2013

Fisk Hill - Fisk Hill slope - Wilton High Point

Fisk Hill and General Miller flood control reservoir
STATE:New Hampshire
TOWN: Wilton
DESTINATION: Fisk Hill
ELEVATION: 1230 feet
SUMMIT COORDINATES: N42 48.660, W71 49.062
SLOPE HIGH POINT COORDINATES: N42 48.762, W71 48.972
TRAIL: bushwhack
DISTANCE: 2.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN: 430 feet
HIKING TIME: 1 hour 15 minutes
SEASON: Summer
DATE: August 3, 2013
WEATHER: 75 degrees, sunny, clear

PARKING: From route 101 in Wilton turn left onto Temple Road. At 1.2 miles you'll reach the Temple town line and the road name changes to General Miller Highway. Continue 0.25 miles to the Souhegan River Flood Control Site 25B and gravel parking area on the left side of the road.

USGS QUAD: Greenville Quad

MAP: (Fisk Hill)

The red line represents the ascent and blue line represents descent

DESCRIPTION:

From parking at the Souhegan River Flood Control Site hop the gate and head in a easterly direction across the open fields. Follow the perimeter of the pond past the dam and across the large field reaching the woods boundary at 0.4 miles. Skirt the perimeter of the marshy area through a forest of Mountain Laurel mixed with ferns reaching open woods after approximately 0.1 miles. Continue south following the path of least resistance to the highest point in Wilton at GPS coordinates N42 48.762, W71 48.972. The town highpoint is along the northeast slope of Fisk hill and is not marked or easily identifiable. The rock wall appears to be the town boundary and I followed it a few hundred feet looking for some sort of witness mark however found nothing. The woods get thicker as you continue southwest crossing several overgrown skidder paths to the summit. The summit is a round dome approximately 200 feet in diameter that is filled with small pine trees and thorny blackberry bushes. The highest point is not easily identified and not marked. After circling the area a few times the closest summit reference I found was a 18" diameter tree stump with a small stone cairn on top.


TRAIL DISTANCES:

HIKING DISTANCES
DESTINATION
DISTANCE TOTAL DIST.
Parking - Entrance to woods 0.4 miles 0.4 miles
Entrance to woods - Wilton High Point0.6 miles1.0 miles
Wilton High Point - Fisk Hill0.15 miles1.15 miles

HIKING TIMES:

HIKING TIMES
DESTINATION
TIME TOTAL TIME
Parking - Entrance to woods 10 minutes 10 minutes
Entrance to woods - Wilton High Point20 minutes30 minutes
Wilton High Point - Fisk Hill15 minutes45 minutes
Fisk Hill - Parking30 minutes1 hour 15 minutes

NOTES / COMMENTS:

Parking at the Souhegan Watershed area isn't the shortest route to the Fisk Hill summit however the longer hike avoids any private property concerns and takes you through an interesting watershed area known as the General James Miller Dam. There is a plaque monument at coordinates N42 49.293, W71 49.240 which provides statistics on the 3450 acre drainage area capable of storing almost 200,000 cubic yards of flood. It was built under the Watershed Protection Act and Flood Prevention act in 1971. It certainly felt like, if the Souhegan River were to ever flood Wilton would be one of the safest towns in the area.

Both the Wilton highpoint and Fisk Hill summit weren't obvious locations and I was hoping for some sort of flagging or paint swatch marking each location. I was disappointed after finding nothing and needed to double check my mapping skills to confirm I had plotted an accurate location.



Parking and gate marking the trailhead                                           General Miller plaque and Souhegan reservoir

 A rock wall at the Wilton town highpoint

A small cairn marking the Fisk Hill summit

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