Skip to main content

The Bonds on a Presidentially Bluebird Day and West Bond Makes #47


The Bond's for Winter... Solo. An interesting undertaking to say the least. I woke up a little after midnight and was on the road by 1am. First car in Lincoln Woods a little after 3am. Lil' Nugget does not know what to think at this point. I get us both ready and we hit the trail... The long flat Lincoln Woods, Wilderness Boundary, and Bond Cliff trail. I think it helped that all I had was my headlamp for light. This narrows the focus and helps me not focus on where I need to be or what the trail is like coming up. I'm focused on the here and now plus, I have plenty of day light for 23 miles... The woods are not without their noises and on more than a few occasions, I make louder noises just in case. the Lincoln Woods Trail to the Wilderness Boundary is flat and easy to travel with just microspikes. Everything is well packed at this point. The water crossing is somewhat solid and able to be passed over an ice bridge but move quick as it creeks under feet. Continuing we head out to meet up with the Bond Cliff trail at about 6am. After a break, Lil' Nugget and I start climbing. The trails are in the best shape they have ever been in. Rocks and roots are covered just enough. Again, microspikes only. The snowshoes are still at home. I hiked up to Daylight. 




All water crossings leading up to the steps are open and flowing. Cross with care on icy rocks as the ice bridges are unstable to support weight. As we continue, I am content to hike and not race to sunrise on the cliff as I wanted. We break tree line at the steps and as I turn around, perspective smacks me in the face. Suddenly everything is small compared to where I am standing and I smile. The wind has picked up and as we make our way to Bond Cliff, I am pretty sure that this is the best I've seen The Bonds yet. There is ice on the rocks and the snow is crusty... Not deep. Easy to travel. We break at the cliff but do not stay too long.




We start to take the ridge to Mount Bond and the wind dies out in places. The sun is very warm and I can't help but keep scanning the horizons. Peaks everywhere and blue blue skies. It's a perfect day. The trail has been blown around a bit but it's easy to follow. We begin ascending Mount Bond and it's easy with all the rocks filled in. The snow is a little soft from the sun and I'm sure it will be softer when we return. It takes no time to summit Mount Bond. From here, you can see everything and it's not even the center of the Whites. But Mount Bond is truly my happy place. Today, I can see the surrounding peaks and then some. The most important peak is about a mile away. West Bond. My number 47.




Working our way from Bond to West Bond I remain conscious of every down trail as those will soon be energy sucking up trails for our return. There are pockets of cold in the shade and the trail is kind of mushy in the sun too. A real mix bag of conditions up here and still a perfect day. We begin to ascend West Bond and I'm fighting the emotions... Odd because it's #47 but I get it. This has been a long time coming. I can only imagine the basket case that will be #48. Lil' Nugget and I crest the summit of West Bond. It's small and well filled in with the snow. The snow is consolidated so, I settle and set up for pictures. The sun is so bright that I'm not even sure what I am shooting. I let Lil' Nugget tell me when it's time to go due to wind and cold. I could stay there until the sun goes down but that won't help us. We begin the painstaking descent back to the flats of the Wilderness Boundary and Lincoln Woods trail. But not before I take in every bit of my surroundings. This area is pure magic.







It's one of those days where it's hard to leave the area above tree line. Even though I know that I'm on borrowed energy, I want to stay up there forever. We scoot back down the steps and begin the long walk back. Thankfully, the descent seems to pass by but I do note that the snow is softer and balling in my microspikes. Water is a bit more open too since it's been warm today. What a strange winter... Best to get all the BIG peaks we can while the weather is good. Lil' Nugget and I waste no time to get back to the junction of the boundary and the Bond Cliff trail. Then we begin the long painful walk back to the car on the flat straight railroad beds... My feet and legs are so tired and the 23 miles is not over yet. The long flat trails just seem to drag on and I can't look up or it psyches me out. The sun is going down and I still have not run into a single soul today. How lucky was I to have the Bonds to myself?? Top visit for sure. I toss myself into auto pilot and just go. Lil' Nugget also wants to get back to the car as she is not stopping at all either. I do see two hikers in front of us but they are far ahead. Either they were on Flume or Owl's Head today. I count down the land marks as we walk.... Bridge to no where, Black Pond, Osseo trail, outlook, Easel, Bridge and we are back at the parking lot. Ready to get home. I talk briefly with the Owl's Head hikers who are impressed with my solo effort. I share my love of the Owl and wish them a safe ride home. I change and head for coffee... My usual reward at the end of a hike. 23 miles and a head full of memories and perspective. Life is good is all I can say. No matter what happens. I have a place that I can come to that makes it all seem better. I swear that today, I took a walk with my Grandfather when I was up there and I was glad for the company and the comfort.


So now there is just one Winter peak remaining.... Mt. Adams. For Kate. 

Popular posts from this blog

Franconia Falls

This morning, I had my sights set on Mt. Waumbek. I figured it would be a good one as I continue to get my legs under me from being sick last month and I had not visited it in a long time. I parked at the winter lot since the residents on the road leading to the trail head love to tow cars that park on the side of the road (believe me, do not tempt fate). Secure my snowshoes to my pack and got Isis all ready. In-spite of colder than cold temps, I really wanted to summit. As I walked up the road, I felt the tightness in my ankle and hoped that it would go away and loosen up and maybe I'd stop sucking wind too. I kept going up the trail and got to the well for a reluctant Pup picture. The trail itself is good and packed. I did not wear microspikes and had no need for snowshoes. I was hopeful that I might use them later in the day. Waumbek starts out with not a great deal of elevation gain but today, it was just enough to make me question... Things in my joints have not been quite r…

Mount Willard

All I wanted to do this week was climb to the top of a mountain. Any mountain at this point as I have been dealing with something that keeps me down. I had been thinking of Mount Willard... 2,865Ft and a 1.6mile trail. Small compared to what I usually hike. But small enough I might be able to summit.

It's a Saturday and I left my house a little after 8am. So much later than I usually leave to hike. But this is not a long hike at all so, after a cup of coffee and making myself one for the road, I loaded the car and headed for The Whites. I knew it would be crowded today since it is Saturday and as I thought, I'm parking on 302... Both the Depot, and the Highland Center are packed. It's .1 to the junction after the cross of the tracks and then we head up the Mt. Willard trail. So far, the trail itself is uncrowded but I assumed that everyone was already up there. Isis on the other hand was busy smelling markers for every dog that has hiked before her. 

The trail is super pa…

Mount Moosilauke

So, I lasted all of 2 weeks off the trails from when I left VT. This weekend, I got tired of waiting for that all day soaking rain (that we need) and hiked Moosilauke via Glencliff. A new trail for me and another small section of the AT. It's a 7.8 mile day today, round trip. It's HUMID and as my history would tell, I do not do well in humidity. But the other thing I am known for is my stubbornness. I'm no quitter. I may stumble but I am not known for quitting.


Glenciff trail starts off easy enough. I walked down from the parking area and entered the woods which quickly transitioned to a field of milkweed. It looked as though some people had chosen to camp here as some areas were tramped down. The trail continues into the woods and over a small well flowing stream. I can feel the humidity in the air and start to take it slow. Even the tree cover is not helping today. Isis and I continue and start to climb but there are very few large rocks to deal with so, the trail is a …