Upper Range Trip
Submitted By Michael Virdone
The Mountains & Stats
People On The Trip
8/6: We managed to get one of a few remaining spots at the garden again, same hike in except this time we managed to find a good campsite.|
8/7: We were up ~6, out of camp by 6:30. We hiked to JBL where we filled water and enjoyed breakfast on the porch. From there we started the grind that is getting to Haystack. We hiked past all the landmarks that show you're making progress to Haystack (Bushnell falls, slant rock, shoreys, range trail jct, etc...). We climbed and climbed and climbed before finally getting to the top of the bump before little haystack. We enjoyed the views before descending into the col.
The climb up little haystack was fun and as we got to the top we were blasted with wind (a little deja vu from our failed attempt this past winter). We continued our climb until we reached the spot where we got turned back previously. Luckily we were able to continue to the summit. We sat on the summit for a while soaking up the great views and relaxing a bit.
After a while we climbed back down to the junction before descending on our way to Basin. We passed the snowbird campsite and were impressed how well the stream was running with how dry the area has been for the past few weeks. The climb up Basin was grueling as always and seemed to take forever but eventually we reached the summit and took another well deserved break. The scrambles on the way up Basin were a nice way to break up the climb.
On the summit we relaxed and talked with some people that had hiked in from JBL. The views were spectacular as always and we had a hard time leaving but we needed to finish our hike. The descent of Basin was a little tricky but soon we were at the Saddleback "cliffs". I honestly think the cliffs get a bad rap from the hiking community. Overall there are much worse climbing moves on a lot of the trails in the 46 but just because these are more exposed it tends to bother people more. The other thing is people are comfortable grabbing a 1" tree and putting all their weight on it, but I found the rock holds to be a lot more stable than a lot of the other things i've had to use to climb other places.
At the summit of Saddleback we relaxed knowing it was all downhill from here. We made our way down to the Saddleback/Gothics col before heading down the orebed trail. Luckily it has been so dry so all the slabs & ladders (the new version of chutes and ladders for hikers) were easily navigated. When we got to the slide crossing at the bottom we knew we were home free and we went on cruise control.
We hiked to the bottom of the orebed, down to the southside trail, before going back to our campsite before packing and doing the slog back out to the car. On the drive home we got Pizza at Little Italy (Tupper Lake, Right off 3, across from Wilson Farms), I have to say, this was the best Pizza I've had since moving off Long Island.
The past two weekends were very exciting and rewarding. After focusing so much on NH over the past few months it was really nice to get back to the ADKs and visit some peaks we haven't done in a while.
The Good and The Bad
|Up 8, down 3, pizza in Saranac|