Wednesday: I met up with Drew in Campton, NH at 9am. We rode together to the base of the Waterville Valley Ski Area. We laced up our boots and headed out on the sleet crusted trail and climbd 2.5 miles to the 4,003′ summit of Mount Tecumseh. Aside from two other hikers who headed out ahead of us, we saw no one else on our journey to the top. The summit was encased in a blanket of clouds. We stood, chilled, in a sea of freezing fog. We then walked over to the ski area as the temps slowly rose to near 40 degrees. The wind was biting but not bitter. We enjoyed a wonderful walk down the ski slopes, even sitting to glissade a few times, to the base of the mountain. Drew gave me an early Christmas Gift, a custom made walking stick he made. I hope to give these same sticks to the finishers of the 200 Mile run in 2008.
From there I headed to Nashua where Sarah met me at my sister’s house. I really enjoyed playing video games with my nephews and showing them who is STILL the best. 😉 Its always nice to have some family time. My sister likes to keep the house cold at night, and as Sarah stole the blankets, I shivered for most of the night, getting little sleep.
Thursday: We woke up early Thursday to head to nashua South High School. St. Joseph’s Hospital was holding its 3rd Annual Thanksgiving Day 5K Trail Run. The run took participants through the soft trails of Mines Falls Park. My nephews Kenny and Tmmy both ran in the kids 400 Meter Dash. Kenny (10) came in 4th Overall and 2 Male. My brother in law Mike (VT100 Crew) ran in the 5K and finished with a new PR time of 23:15! I ran with Sarah, who was participating in her first 5K race EVER. She had never even run this far before and she was determined to finish. With a time of 34:19, she did just that. A real thrill to run in the back of the pack with her and help her succeed at her latest goal.
We showered up and I headed to my mothers for a quick hello and to pick up some things. Then it was off to Sarah’s families house for Thanksgiving Day. I enjoyed the usual quirkiness of her family, huddled around the days football games. The meal had all the fixings and desert was just as delicious. I ate WAY too much, but theres no better way to celebrate another year of activity. We played cards, Shanghai, and then off to bed. Sarah and I slept on the living room floor… another night of little or no sleep.
Friday: Woke up early and went to the old landscaping company to help rake leaves for 7 hours. Made some extra cash, headed home for a shower, then went back to EMS to work another 6 hours there. Long day.
Saturday: Pete met me at home and we drove to Gorham, NH where we began our hike for the day. We hiked Mount Adams in the Northern Presidentials. The 5,774 foot peak is New Hampshire’s 2nd highest. We walked on snow from beginning to end. Ice was the name of the game on the Valley Way trail. Above the hut we picked our way slowly through the rock field to the summit as we negotiated a few snow drifts and rime ice (see photo above) latching onto everything. The summit temperature was 5 degrees with a windchill of 30 Below on the top. We looked like moon men all bundled up, wearing goggles to protect our faces from frost bite. Despite the sub-arctic cold, it was a picture perfect day up high and another great day for hiking. Blue skies and fair weather clouds, blowing snow and snotcicles… 9.8 miles total with over 9,000′ of elevation change.