Crawford, Stairs, Resolution Mtns. Hike
Hiking/Walk DATE: 05/19/2012 - 05/19/2012
Trip/Event Location: Bartlett, NH
Max # People: 15
Trip Guiding / Event Fee: No, I will not be asking participants for money
Difficulty Level: Strenuous
Fun, exercise and great views from THREE summits!
At 3,119 ft., Mt. Crawford is not even a four thousand footer, but its location makes it a wonderful vantage point from which to view the White...
Mt. Crawford is reached by the Davis Path, one of the oldest hiking trails in the White Mountains. The trail was completed by Nathaniel Davis in 1845 as a bridle a path to the summit of Mt. Washington. The trail fell to disuse in the 1850's and was brought back as a footpath in 1910 by the AMC.
To make this historic and rewarding hike, drive about 6 miles west from Bartlett on US 302. Watch for a stone house known as Notchland Inn on the left above a railroad crossing for old US 302, now bypassed. A short distance beyond this, you'll see the Davis Path sign on the right. Turn right into the large parking area. We'll be driving a blue Toyota FJ Cruiser.
It was a sunny day with temperatures near 80. It was a good day to hike up these three peaks.
Arriving at an almost empty Davis Path parking lot, we set foot up the trail. The Davis Path initially follows a dirt road that residents park along as they don't have a vehicular bridge to their homes on the other side of the Saco River. They walk on foot across the Bemis Bridge, which the Davis Path shares. The river was flowing. After passing the homes we crossed a stream on a log bridge and then the climbing began.
While the flats provide a nice warm up, the trail steepens up suddenly but never steeply and continues at a relentless pace until reaching the ledgy areas below Mt. Crawford spur path. It truly is like a 4,000 footer climb, you start at 1000 feet and climb to near 3,000 feet in 2.2 miles, with the rest of the climb to the summit on the 0.3-mile spur trail. The views from the Mt. Crawford summit ledges were tremendous.
After enjoying the views and a snack for a bit, we headed back to the Davis Path. Carlos went back to his car while the rest of us soldiered on to Stairs Mountain.
Stretches of the Davis Path between Mt. Crawford's spur trail and the Resolution shelter junction [shelter is no longer there] were awesome ~ good footing, neat terrain, and excellent views. Not long after the shelter junction, we were at the Stairs Col junction, and then on our way up the steep ascent to the Stairs Mountain spur path junction.
The views from the top of the Giant Stairs were tremendous. While it doesn't seem like you're on a stairway, the vista looks at points ranging from Cranmore Mountain to the east to the numerous Pemi peaks to the south and west.
Jon and I recalled we spent the night up here last time. It an ideal spot for a vision quest. We were able to fit about three tents up here. Our tent was near the ledges overlook. We spent a beautiful evening watching the sunset and the next morning watching the sunrise!
We took some pictures and had lunch before heading back on the Davis Path hiking highway to the Mount Parker Trail.
We hung a left at the Mount Parker Trail and the first ledge on this trail has wonderful views.
The we went for the Mt. Resolution summit upper ledges. We got off the trail inadvertently and climbed up the actual summit [or very close to it]. We returned back to the trail and took a break around this cube shaped boulder on the upper ledges. The views were well worth it, great lookouts to the North, East and Stairs Mountain.
After that, we u-turned back to the first ledge and returned to the Davis Path.
Overall we saw very few people the entire day. We hiked back to the cars with a peaceful state of mind.
It was a great day out. It's hard to beat sunny skies and temperatures near 80! These 3 peaks are well deserving of their place on the 52-with-a-view list.
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What Members Are Saying About This Trip/Event
- Thanks Mike & Jon for a really fun hike- the weather could not have been better- hope to see everyone on another hike this summer!! - Bobcat
- It was a TRIFECTA day with a hike over 3 peaks with a passionate, persevarant & perfect group resulting in a happy, harmonious & heavenly outcome. - JDNnh
- Even with those unusually warm early spring days, I couldn't really embrace the season until yesterday finally I was out there in the nature with nice group of people. Jon & Mike, thank you so much again for leading another memorable hike and thank you every one for great company. The moment of happiness was right there with us!! - liketodo
- Thanks Mike & Jon for leading a great hike on a perfect day. Never thought the views could be this spectacular. The delicious dinner hit the spot after a long day and the camaraderie afterwards was superb. GO makes it possible! - wildcat
- Thank you Mike and Jon, it was a GREAT trip. The sunburn tells how nice the weather was. It was fun meeting everyone who came. SUMMER IS HERE! - WalkaboutBrian