Monday, May 18, 2015

Noonmark Mountain

The Great Range
One of my favorite game to play while in the Adirondacks is "name that mountain."  It is generally played on a summit, but any open view will do.  Generally I suck.  A few mountains have distinct characteristics but aside from the obvious ones (whiteface & giant) I'm clueless.  This weekend I played my best round while on top of Noonmark and for once could name close to 10 of the closest mountains.

It had been 8 months since I hiked my last new high peak, 7 months since I've hiked in the Adirondacks and 6 days since I hiked a mountain.  Jen suggested that we climb Noonmark and I was eager to join.  I've always heard great things about the hike and the view, but lets be real, I was obsessed with peak bagging the high peaks.

The hike is 5 miles round trip, so we didn't leave Albany until 9am. It was a quick drive up, Jen and I hadn't seen each other in a few months so we had a lot to catch up.  The AMR parking lot was full since half of it was closed so we parked near the Roaring Brook trail for Giant.  We set off on the trail around 10:40 with a few people signed in ahead of us.  The trail was very dry for this time of year, due to the slow thaw and lack of rain for the past few weeks, not that I minded. The climb was steep but meandered enough that I wasn't huffing too much.  I already felt loads better than last weekends hike.  Within the first hour we reached a few lookout points, all with great views.  It was overcast for most of the day, but clear enough to see for miles.

Ausable Club & Valley 


Giant of the Valley

We reached the summit a bit past noon and enjoyed our lunch with a summit full of Canadians.  Most everyone around us were speaking in French.  (which reminds me to ask my friend for his audio french lessons)  In fact everyone we met was likely Canadian.  except I assume the dude we met in crocs was American.

Dix Mountain 



The summit is wide open and massive. We wandered around to the different points and played "name that mountain" before heading back down.  No Adirondack hike is complete without the Adirondack butt slide so Jen and I did oblige as we made our descent.

We were back at the car around 3pm and made a quick stop at Chapel Pond before driving back south.  Noonmark is a great hike, it is easy to get  to, moderately challenging with amazing views. As always it felt great to be back in my favorite park in the world.

Chapel Pond


Distance:
5.6 RT (from parking lot)

Elevation:
3556

Time:
4 hours and change  including lunch

Gear:
Dueter Backpack, hydroflask waterbottles (40oz)  Hydrapack,  Asolo boots, EMS pants, and EMS ski socks

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