hut and monroe

Monroe (5384')

2003 August 24

This was a great hike that we were able to do with little time. We left Melrose, MA at 10:30 am, had lunch in Lincoln, and were on the trail by 13:45. Round trip to the summit of Monroe is only 7.2 miles, but the first mile is flat which makes the next 2.5 miles very steep. The change in pitch is abrupt and occurs immediately after the enchanting Gem Pool. The trail itself is varied with some great views and features like the dam the Gorge along the way. Also, the bugs are finally dead which improved the comfort level considerably.

dam gem_pool the_gorge_1 the_gorge_2

The Lakes of the Clouds hut appears suddenly after reaching the scrub just below treeline. Visibility was excellent and we could see Camel's Hump in Vermont, but it was very windy and cold. Mount Washington had a record low of 24 deg. that day and our thermometer showed temps in the low 40's. Gusts on the summit of Monroe I estimated at 60 MPH. Wrapped up like gore-tex mummies, the weather did little to deter us.

cog_railway.jpg elleing_on_monroe2 shawn_on_monroe monroe_view.jpg

The Hut was full and people were still looking to book a $68 bunk (which includes a $10 breakfast and $20 dinner). Even the "dungeon's" $8 cots were completely occupied. We stopped for lunch and enjoyed the incredible view from the dining area, hiked Monroe, then stopped in one more time on the way back for a $1 bottomless hot chocolate.

We finished in 5 hours and 28 minutes. Not a bad pace considering how ill we both felt that day and how much the wind blew us around above treeline.

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