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Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

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Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby Wendellator » Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:05 pm

I am on a tight schedule and trying to figure out if it is possible to summit Mt Washington in 1 day or should I go to the Daks instead and do haystack. Here is my itinerary, leave Baltimore and arrive in NJ-Pertamboy at noon on Fri then drive to either place. I believe it's 8 hours to Washington and 5 to Daks.The problem lies in that, I need to be back in NJ by 7am on Sunday to go back to Baltimore. I figured about 30-45 min per mile depending on weather conditions.After getting some beta from (Nartreb)(Thanks )I was looking at the Ammonoosuc ravine route.I am not sure of the exact mileage.
Now for the Daks i have some beta from(Autoxfil)(Thanks),I am looking at Haystack from the garden.and maybe Saddleback.
Any insight to either place would greatly be appreciated.
Thanks.
Wen
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby Bark Eater » Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:42 pm

I think the timing for either is awfully tight considering it's winter. Winds on Mt. Washington were over 100 mph on Saturday. Get a day like that, you do 16 hours of driving for nothing. Consider there are some nice winter climbs in the Catskills, only 2 hours north of NYC.
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby MattGreene » Mon Feb 27, 2012 4:35 pm

You've definitely got an ambitious timeline, but good on you if you can make it work. I can't comment on Washington in winter, but I know the Daks pretty well. Haystack will be a fairly long approach, something like 18 miles round trip from the Garden. Basin and Saddleback wouldn't add much on to that distance. All reports say that the Daks got a lot of snow over the past few days, and are likely to get more this week. There's a good chance nobody will head up to Haystack before you get there. The trail markers may also be covered in snow. So, it's tough to say. If a group has been up recently, Haystack could be an easy hike. On the other hand, you might find yourself swimming in unconsolidated powder wondering where the trail went to. With such a tight timeline, I'd suggest you check out the conditions link on the Views from the Top website, and stick to a mountain that someone's been up recently. For example, I saw that a bunch of people did Gothics and Armstrong last weekend. In any case, have fun and let us know how it turns out!
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby triyoda » Sat Mar 03, 2012 2:20 am

Based on recent reports for Haystack, ice axe and an crampons are highly advised if not necessary. Basin also has some Class 3 when coming from the Haystack side. Just need to take care here as it is reported to be a little icy. Good route, which I am planning for next weekend, but just be aware it is a little more than just a hike in current conditions. With the right gear and experience, not a problem.
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby PackLightPaul » Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:26 pm

Haystack for sure.
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby rasgoat » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:44 am

First, Washington is waaaaay easier in a day than Haystack or any of the Dacks peaks surrounding it given the conditions for Washington are acceptable. Second, If you do plan on hiking Haystack in a day in winter, you best be in amazing shape. I say pick something easier with the timeline you have. Trying this trip seems to me a setup for failure with soo much effort in so little time. The Catskills are a great option. Perhaps something in the Indian Head area or Blackhead Range.
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby Autoxfil » Thu Mar 08, 2012 6:16 pm

rasgoat wrote:Second, If you do plan on hiking Haystack in a day in winter, you best be in amazing shape.


Aren't most climbers in "amazing" shape, relatively speaking? Haystack in a day is kinda long, but it's only 18 miles, most of which are pretty flat. As long as the trails are broken out you'd have to move pretty flippin' slow to take more than 12 hours on that hike. I am far from the fittest guy out there, but I hike quickly, pack light, don't make BS stops, and I'd probably take about 8 hours to do Haystack in these conditions. Someone in truly "amazing shape" could bang it out in under 6 hours, easy.
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby rasgoat » Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:43 am

So we can assume that most hikers/climbers are automatically in great shape always? Relative to who? a couch potato who couldn't even make it to the Johns Brook lodge? Ok, Amazing may be a strong word but as far as I'm concerned, Haystack in a day is more difficult than it looks like on a map, in summer. Also winter may or may not slow down travel. If there is deep snow and no broken trail, it would be a very long mission. Although the beginning is flat, the ending has a bunch of ups and downs. 8 hours huh? I think you are in amazing shape and probably one of the fastest hikers out there. I truly wonder if you have ever been stuck up there in the dead of winter in hip deep powder?
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Re: Mt.Washington..or Haystack,Short weekend

Postby MoapaPk » Mon Mar 12, 2012 4:01 am

I recall doing Basin the winter (1972) with unbroken trail for just the part above Slant Rock. It was extremely exhausting; deep soft snow. I was in good shape back then (17 yo). Maybe we carried too much, had heavy old-style gear, or whatever, but it didn't seem like an easy trip.
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