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Mount Monadnock

While I am waiting to head back to the Long Trail this week, I decided to make a quick trip up Monadnock. Funny how I find this peak in my backyard and yet I only seem to hike it when things are not quite right. It's been a tough adjustment since I left the Long Trail last week and I needed this beautiful day on the summit... It will get me back on trail. So, I took the Dublin Trail up for some fun this time around. It's only about 2.1miles from car to summit but it's got a ton of different terrain. I've always said that if a person can't get up North to hike, just try Monadnock... It's got it all on one mountain. 

Dublin Trail, starts out really mellow crossing the access road and into the hard wood forest. I have my small "Seek the Peak" pack today as my larger one is packed and ready to leave for the LT. It feels great to have such a light load on my back. Two one liter bottles of water should be good even though it's humid out today. I should also say that I am hiking solo... In that I have had to leave Isis at home. There are no dogs allowed on Monadnock. She's home resting up. I'll still have to walk her after this too. There is also no water down low so, make sure you have enough from beginning to end. 

I hit a series of scrambles before breaking tree line, which is characteristic of the upper trails on Monadnock. It's fun to hike these and I can feel the breeze starting to kick up. It was great to run into the 3 gentleman that I shared camp with my last night on the Monadnock Sunapee Greenway. Nice to rest for a bit and catch up. They were finishing the trail today and just needed to get back to the car. Once you break tree line, the trail to the summit is very quick over slabs and large boulders. The summit itself is very busy and also windy. The wind feels great after such a humid climb but I did eventually take out my extra layer while I was sitting. A very nice gentleman took my summit picture too... Seems like forever ago that I had one of those taken. After this, I began my descent of the trail and stopped on the lower ledges for some water, food, and a chance to sit in quiet and enjoy the day. I love seeing people at the summit and most are in great spirits. I also love my quiet time to sit and think.

It's just a beautiful day up top. The breeze makes the temp's bearable and I'm enjoying sitting in the sun watching the crows play on the thermals up in the breeze. Things feel right again, even with this small success. I'll be heading back to the LT to pick up a little after I left off. I'll be heading over Mt Mansfield by the end of the week to set myself up now for a 2017 finish. I spent a lot of time this hike getting my head in the game where I was completely out of the game last week. I wanted to give up when it was really hot and humid and I was working hard. But I didn't. I got over the wall of quit and made it... 3165ft never felt so good after the rocky path to get here. The descent of the trail went very quick and I felt confident on the downs. I had the pleasure of watching a four year old girl begin her hiking career on this trail today. She was owning that trail too! I don't care how big or how small the mountain, you always walk out feeling like you are walking off the space shuttle on the return from a space mission. It is always an accomplishment to hike a mountain.

Such a confidence booster right in my backyard and Dublin Trail is by far my favorite for a variety of obstacles. Ready and focused for Mt. Mansfield and another 23.3 mile section of the Long Trail. Once step at a time, I will arrive at the border and it will be a very sweet End to End victory when it does happen. 

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