Day 2 of our vacation still held questionable weather. I made the decision not to head for Katahdin, but to head for other peaks on the NE 111 and New England Hundred Highest... North and South Brother and Mount Coe. Fort Mountain was a distant question mark.
The weather was the same as the day before, fog, drizzle and generally overcast. We weren't going to cancel any hiking plans, but the Katahdin hike was going to be saved for good weather!
We started from the park tote road on the Marston Trail, which was just a few miles south of Nesowadnehunk Campground; our base for the weekend.
|Our starting point|
The trail was in decent shape until we reached the unnamed pond about halfway to North Brother. From there until the final pitch to North Brother we were hiking on a trail filled with 6-12 inches of water. It was like hiking in a roaring stream in some places. Our feet were quickly soaked.
|Unnamed pond, and the beginning of the wet trail|
We saw one hiker on this trail. He was on his way down and he warned us about the wet conditions.
|Junction with the trail to Mount Coe|
When we finally reached the final pitch, we were back on a dry trail to the summit.
|The summit is in sight|
Views were pretty much obscured by the clouds. We could make out the summit cone we were on, and that was it.
I made the decision not to do the bushwhack to Fort Mountain. It was just not worth it with the conditions we had. We returned to the upper junction to the Mount Coe trail and headed that way to do a loop hike. The trail continued to me under water. When we reached the spur trail to South Brother, Leesa told me to go ahead and take the spur to the summit and then I could catch up to her as she continued straight towards Mount Coe.
|The spur trail sign for South Brother|
I reached South Brother in about 10 minutes. Visibility had gotten worse and I could only see a hundred feet or so. I returned to the trail and continued on the catch Leesa.
The trail suddenly became remarkably nice between the South Brother spur, and Mount Coe. This is a relatively new trail, having been cut in the late 1980's. When I reached the summit of Mount Coe, Leesa had just sat down for some food.
We left Mount Coe to continue our loop. We hadn't heard about the Mount Coe slide, but soon came to an impressive slide that Leesa was a little tentative about climbing down. I helped her make her way and we slowly negotiated any wet spots on the rock.
|One more looking down|
The remainder of the trail was generally nice. We were glad we made the loop and didn't have to hike back down the underwater trail. All in all we had a nice time in spite of the fact that our feet and boots were soaked.
Hike Distance: ~10 miles
Hike Time: 8.25 hours, including stops
Total Vertical Gain: 3600'