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Katahdin

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Katahdin

Postby NW » Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:55 pm

Just looking for opinions on a couple of Katahdin trails. I have never been there before but am going down in August and have more or less decided on going up the Helon-Taylor and down the Cathedral or vice versa. Any experiences with these trails as to which is better to go up/down etc. Thanks.
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Postby nartreb » Mon Aug 02, 2010 2:14 pm

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Re: Katahdin

Postby desainme » Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:22 pm

NW wrote:Just looking for opinions on a couple of Katahdin trails. I have never been there before but am going down in August and have more or less decided on going up the Helon-Taylor and down the Cathedral or vice versa. Any experiences with these trails as to which is better to go up/down etc. Thanks.


IMHO the reverse is better. up Cathedral and down HT.
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Postby NW » Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:38 pm

Thanks for the link and opinion. I was initially thinking up Cathedral down HT but one woman I know said she thought going down the Cathedral would be easier then down the HT. But she might have thought it would be better to do the longer part first then make the descent abit faster, which of course is a good idea to. I just wondered about how the Cathedral was for descent.
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Postby NW » Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:53 pm

Also does anyone know how far it is from the Chimney Pond campground to the Abol one? One site seemed to suggest it was less then half a mile but a map I saw made it look like it was 5 miles on the trail, which really didn't make to much sense from other things I've read.
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Postby nartreb » Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:20 pm

A few miles and some 5000 feet of elevation gain, unless you're confused about which campgrounds you're talking about:

http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=45.90411,-68 ... ahdin%20ME
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Postby NW » Mon Aug 02, 2010 9:40 pm

Haha yea I think I got momentarily confused between the distance between Chimney Pond and Roaring Brook and Chimney Pond and Abol. Thanks
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Postby chocodove » Mon Aug 02, 2010 9:53 pm

NW wrote:Haha yea I think I got momentarily confused between the distance between Chimney Pond and Roaring Brook and Chimney Pond and Abol. Thanks


Even Chimney Pond to Roaring Brook is still over 2 miles if I recall correctly. Pick up the AMC map and book. It's really indispensible for any trip there.
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Re: Katahdin

Postby rasgoat » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:24 pm

NW wrote:Just looking for opinions on a couple of Katahdin trails. I have never been there before but am going down in August and have more or less decided on going up the Helon-Taylor and down the Cathedral or vice versa. Any experiences with these trails as to which is better to go up/down etc. Thanks.




vice versa. My favorite loop. Don't go down the Cathederal unless you think downclimbing is more fun than up climbing.
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Postby tioga » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:40 pm

I went down Cathedral a few years ago. You can see my trip report about it here:
http://www.summitpost.org/trip-report/4 ... -Sons.html
(note that I am not looking for votes but linking it just for informational purposes)

I don't think it was too bad but you are going down a lot and will have to use hands, knees, elbows, and butt to make it down. If you have bad knees, I wouldn't do it.
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Postby John Duffield » Mon Aug 02, 2010 11:45 pm

tioga wrote:I went down Cathedral a few years ago. You can see my trip report about it here:
http://www.summitpost.org/trip-report/4 ... -Sons.html
(note that I am not looking for votes but linking it just for informational purposes)

I don't think it was too bad but you are going down a lot and will have to use hands, knees, elbows, and butt to make it down. If you have bad knees, I wouldn't do it.


+ 1

We took 3 15 yo boys down it. Was their idea since it was shorter. Lots of Butt sliding on slabby rock. Not sure I would do any of this mountain with bad knees. A crappy pair of shorts on the outside would be good if you want to do this. It's a once in a life type thing.
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Postby NW » Tue Aug 03, 2010 1:03 pm

I really wanted to do the Cathedral trail and Helon Taylor trail but as it turned out the only campground near a trail head I could get was Abol. So now it looks like up Helon Taylor down Abol. I reserved quite early but was surprised by how fast the popular campgrounds fill up. I guess probably a fair amount of people drive over to make reservations. I had to do mine through the mail. Sounds like there's a fair amount of bugs from the other posts. No worries for me there, growing up here and especially around my grandparents place it's amazing that I wasn't fully devoured by horseflies, blackflies, midgets, dogflies, or misquitos. At least I am fully prepared in that way! I read that on some trails there's water sources, what's the opinion on just carrying all the water you need versus carrying most, along with a small purifier (barely weighs anything) to top up what you've used when you get to the water granted the water is always there. I think that carrying the purifier would reduce weight overall because I wouldn't have to carry the whole days water at any one time. Opinions?
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Postby chocodove » Tue Aug 03, 2010 2:00 pm

NW wrote:I really wanted to do the Cathedral trail and Helon Taylor trail but as it turned out the only campground near a trail head I could get was Abol. So now it looks like up Helon Taylor down Abol. I reserved quite early but was surprised by how fast the popular campgrounds fill up. I guess probably a fair amount of people drive over to make reservations. I had to do mine through the mail. Sounds like there's a fair amount of bugs from the other posts. No worries for me there, growing up here and especially around my grandparents place it's amazing that I wasn't fully devoured by horseflies, blackflies, midgets, dogflies, or misquitos. At least I am fully prepared in that way! I read that on some trails there's water sources, what's the opinion on just carrying all the water you need versus carrying most, along with a small purifier (barely weighs anything) to top up what you've used when you get to the water granted the water is always there. I think that carrying the purifier would reduce weight overall because I wouldn't have to carry the whole days water at any one time. Opinions?


If you go up Helon, the last water source is pretty low and you would have quite a ways to go with most of the actual "climbing" ahead of you. I am not sure about Abol as I have never been on that side of the mountain. You do know if you go up Helon you will have to spot a car at Abol, yes? They are on completely opposite sides of the mountain. We carried over 100oz per person on a hot day for a trip up Helon and down the Saddle and we both had a little left over at the end. Your mileage may vary based on how much water you drink, obviously. Baxter recommends having at least 64oz for any trip in the park, but my opinion is you will probably be happier with more for an August trip.
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Postby kakakiw » Tue Aug 03, 2010 2:42 pm

Did you reserve a parking space for your car at Roaring Brook?
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Postby John Duffield » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:06 pm

We were camped at Abol last time, a couple of years ago. If I had it to do all over again, I'd shoot straight out of the campground up the back. Lots of downed wood below treeline but it avoids that entire hassle at Roaring Brook.
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