Monday, October 31, 2016

Black Cap Mountain

Today, I hiked the Black Cap Mountain trail in the Green Hills Preserve. The last few days have been rainy. This fairly short hike seemed a safe bet.

The trailhead is located on the south side of Hurricane Mountain Rd, in Conway, NH. Hurricane Mountain Rd is reportedly not maintained in the winter. It's gated at some point in November, but I couldn't figure out when. It looks like you have to check with the forest service to find out if it's open, so do that if there's any doubt in your mind.

The hike is about 1.1 miles from the trailhead to the top of the mountain, with 650 ft of elevation change. There's a map of the trail, but you really don't need it. It's very well marked.

Conditions were good, although the trail was wetter than I expected. Mud and standing water could be found in places, but nothing that a good pair of hiking boots couldn't withstand.

Parts of the trail are slabby... and it probably would be less fun, and more slippery, in the rain.

slab along the trail
It took me about 30 minutes to reach the top. You can see Mt. Washington far off in the distance from here. There's snow up there right now.
View from the top of Black Cap Mountain. Mt Washington, in the distance, is covered in snow.
There's a memorial stone at the top. It reads "The Green Hills - Preserved by the Nature Conservancy  - through the generosity of - Anna B. Stearns - as a memorial to her mother and father - 1990". Thanks Anna!
The Green Hills with thanks to Anna B. Stearns
You can also see Whitehorse Ledge and Cathedral from the summit of Black Cap.
Whitehorse Ledge and Cathedral in the distance as viewed from Black Cap Mountain

I met a couple from Ontario at the top and chatted a short while. The hike down was nearly as easy as the hike up, with the whole trip taking about 1 hour. Nice day!