Morgan-Percival, May 6, 2006Preview
Mt. Morgan Trail to the summit of Mt. Morgan (2220' - 1500' gain) - a moderate hike with lake and mountain
views. We will do a loop over to Mt. Percival (2212') with slight ledge climbing required on the
last 0.1 miles up Mt. Percival. The entire loop is just under 4.5 miles.
The Mt. Morgan Trail starts as overgrown woods road at far end of parking lot. At 0.1 miles, a 0.4-mile connector leaves right to circle around to Mt. Percival Trail while the main trail continues to ascend on an old road with occasional bypass of eroded or wet sections. This becomes a trail ascending to an intersection with Crawford-Ridgepole Trail at 1.7 miles. To the left, the Crawford-Ridgepole heads toward Mt. Webster, while we will take the right toward Mt. Morgan. At 1.9 miles, another intersection is reached with a side path left.
This second intersection path runs left along a cliff base to a series of 3 ladders, with the step from the second to the third being particularly exciting (but you can take a path to the right to avoid doing the ladders if you choose). From the ladders you pass through a cave and climb up and around another cliff to a viewpoint of Squam and Winnipesaukee.
The Mt. Morgan and Crawford-Ridgepole Trails go right and climb more steeply to a split that we will take at 2.0 miles where the Crawford-Ridgepole leads right .8 miles to Mt. Percival Trail. We will enjoy lunch and scenery atop Mt. Percival. Then we will descend from Mt. Percival via the Mt. Percival Trail until we meet the connector tail back to Mt. Morgan Trail where we started.
NEXT HIKE: May 6, Morgan-Percival
HIKE LEADER: Diane King
CARPOOLS: 9:00 LL Bean's off Exit 14, Concord NH OR 9:15 Puffin Stop at the corner of Routes 109 & 16, Wakefield NH
TRAILHEAD: 10:00 From the North I-93 Exit 24 onto US Rte 3 S about 4.6 miles to Holderness. Turn left on NH Route 113 and continue about 5.6 miles to trailhead on left. If you miss the Morgan trailhead parking lot, you will end up at the Percival trailhead on the left 1/8 mile down the road but we are starting instead from the Morgan trailhead not the (Morgan) Percival trailhead. On a nice day the parking lot will likely be full when we get there, so plan to park on the side of the road.
The Morgan - Percival hike was what you would call a fun hike, here is Diane's report:
Seventeen people and 3 furry friends plus numerous black flies departed Morgan Trailhead parking lot near 10:30 am. The trail was relatively dry and we had gradual gain for about a mile and a half before reaching our split to the ladders. Most folks braved the ladders but a few of us went around with the dogs to the top. We had a nice view of Squam Lake and its many islands and lunched at Morgan summit. The black flies enjoyed our company a bit more than we did theirs.
Then we headed over to Percival less than a mile away through a pretty wooded and rocky section. Along the way we met up with another of our group who had missed us at the parking lot and summit. At the Percival Summit we had even more room to loll about and enjoy the view and chit chat and inspect the cliff area overlooking the "unseen" caves. We headed down the trail and quickly came across another split where you could head straight down to the parking area or over to the caves. Half the group inspected he cave area and a few crawled through and found to the left the trail leading back up to the Percival Summit. There was some confusion at this point since few of us knew the cave area but Donna expertly maneuvered those in the cave back to the summit trail. Donna Rocks and Girls do too!!!!!
Dennis located the stranded hikers and everyone headed back down. We arrived back to the parking lot at varying intervals with a few cuts and bruises, the hallmark of a "really good" hike. Our concierge, Jeff, directed us to an ice cream restaurant a few miles down the road. We got there a little after 3:30 and the sign on the window said they didn't open until 4:00 pm. It is hard to keep ice cream deprived hikers waiting and the majority split for home. Our concierge reports they waited and found the Brown Sundaes, Kahlua and Bailey's ice cream. (I didn't know there was a bar in the area?) If we knew the pickings were going to be that good, we probably all would have waited!
A big welcome to the several new people who joined us today and added to the excitement of the day; we hope to see you again soon.
>> Editors note: Donna gets the "gold star award" for having the ingenuity to collect ice from the cave and deliver it to the hiker who had a bump on the head from a fall. Good thinking Donna!
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