Submitted By Michael Virdone
The Mountains & Stats
People On The Trip
Arrived at Upper Works parking area at around 8:30 and were on the trail by 9. The thought of "racing" the thunderstorms to the leantos didn't sound very fun, but we didn't have much of a choice. At first it was a balmy summer eve, we made good time across the bridges, when the temperature began to drop. At the second bridge we began to see cloud to cloud lightning, which increased the pace and decreased the breaks. The lightning became more and more frequent and then the thunder began. We were still hiking rain free until 1-1.5 miles from flowed lands the rain finally began. We took a break to put our rain gear on and then continued.
Finally we reached the Calamity leantos, in the first leanto there were 8 people packed in, they offered us some space to come in and dry out, but obviously we couldn't sleep there. At the second leanto (the dirt floored one) there were 4 people, nicely spaced out, they just shot us a dirty look that told us to keep moving. We decided to head down flowed lands away from lake colden to get the best chance of getting a leanto. When we got to the oppalescent leanto it was 3 people with a dog, We asked if we could stay and they said it was "full". After a little while longer we reached the last leanto on that side of flowed lands and fortunately it was empty. I understand that leantos are first come first served, However it's pretty rude to leave a group hiking in a thunderstorm because you are too selfish to move over. There's always room for one more is my saying when it comes to leantos, especially when the weather is crappy.
(enough whining about the leantos)...
Saturday morning we were greeted to beautiful weather. We were on the trail by 7:30 and back to the calamity leantos by 8:00. We dropped our overnight packs at the leanto and carried our daypacks over to herbert brook. At the crossing of herbert brook we refilled our water and began the climb. The first 100 feet of trail had me concerned that this was going to be a difficult trip (because of the amount of spruce clogging the trail) but shortly after it opened up into a nice forrest along herbert brook. It was a nice level trail up until we ran into the flume. The climb up from there onto the slide was very enjoyable although I did underestimate the slipperyness of the algae a few times. After the trail left the slide it began a more steady climb. At one point the trail forked (left crossed the brook, right went around a downed tree) we opted for left, which took us around the left bank of the flooded area. From there the climb to the summit was pretty steep with a few scrambling sections.
Eventually we reached the summit and took a break for lunch. I had been passed by another hiker around the beaver pond who was also working on his 46, we had lunch with him at the summit. Definitely take the time to poke around the summit for the views, there is a small herd path that leads behind the summit disc, it leads to some great views. We also enjoyed looking up Iriquous at the people enjoying their summit there. Eventually we climbed down though some of the steeper sections took longer than anticipated.
The hike out from flowed lands was quite the trudge, my ankle was beginning to bother me since I rolled it a few times during the trip. Despite feeling slow we made great time out. Once we returned to the car we jumped in the river by the trailhead to cool off a bit and then we were headed back home. Unfortunately I haven't found an awesome diner between Newcomb and Utica so we just opted to pig out at the Stewarts in long lake.
All in all a very good hike, one of the more enjoyable "trail-less" peaks i've done.
The Good and The Bad
The views from Marshall were pretty good
douchebags in leantos who won't move over to let people come in out of the rain
|uneventful, a good dinner at stewarts since threre is no good diners on the drive home. We took 365 from Verona all the way to 28.|