Thursday, August 28, 2014

Iron Mtn & South Cliffs - A Beautiful Trailhead (Yes, Trailhead)

This was day four of our five day hiking vacation in the Whites.

Without further ado, I am going to show a few pictures of the beautiful views that exists at the trailhead.  Yes, these next three shots were taken from the trailhead, not some viewpoint or summit:

There you go.  I guess we could have ended the "hike" here and jumped back into the car satisfied with what we had seen.  LOL...

Today's hike was of Iron Mountain and more importantly the South Cliffs some .7 of a mile further along the Iron Mtn Trail.  It is the cliffs where we were treated to great views, even better than those at the trailhead.  To reach the trailhead you make a rather substaintial elevation change on the dirt road approach.  As best I recall, the drive on this well maintained dirt road climbs about 1,100 feet which is why the views at the trailhead are so good.  

Now on to some pictures taken during our climb.

There is a viewpoint not too far from the actual summit that has nice views.  This shot and the next one are from that viewpoint.

To help put things in perspective, the larger mountains on the right side of this photo are the Wildcat Ridge and further along Carter Dome.

At the summit of Iron Mountain there are remnants of a fire tower but there are no views.

To reach the best views on this hike you need to follow this designer trail sign.  I think they used Microsoft Publisher or maybe Adobe Illustrator to design this trail sign.  The sign says it is .5 of a mile to the South Cliffs but the White Mountain Guide has it as .7 and I would agree that it is at least that far.  An easy hike with a number of smaller ups and downs along the way.

We've reached the cliffs and the views are broad and certainly made this short hike worthwhile.

A little something I don't do often in my blog, a video of the view.

There is a lot of washout like that shown here on the trail up to Iron Mountain.  I often wonder when I see this type of condition whether it was caused by years of rain and erosion or was most of the damage from a few major storms (lke the damage done by Hurricane Irene in 2011).

More erosion.

If your are looking for a short hike with substantive rewards while in the Jackson, NH area this is one I would highly recommend.  It is only about 3.25 miles with 1,210' of elevation gain.


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