Thursday, January 12, 2012

Thursday Things: New Hiking List: The Terrifying Twenty-Five

It's Thursday, which means it's time to report our progress on 101 Things in 202 Thursdays.

We're happy to report that we can now mark as complete number 35, "play every board and card game in the house," and number 46, "create our own hiking list name it, and create an appropriate patch."

Playing every board and card game was both fun and tedious.  It was nice to revisit games we hadn't played in a while, but, unfortunately, the girls aren't ready to let go of anything.  Arg.  I'd REALLY like to declutter the game cabinet...

Now, number 46, our new hiking list:  The Terrifying Twenty-Five


We will turn Alex's design into a patch.

Many thanks to all the folks at VFTT for their advice and suggestions!

This list includes slides, rock scrambles and boulder caves that can be found along maintained trails within the White Mountains of New Hampshire.

No one but us may want to do this list, but that's okay...our primary objective is to do the kinds of hikes we like best.

Sage came up with the name -- The Terrifying Twenty-Five (she wanted to make it seem especially grandiose, hence the word "terrifying").

Alex drew the design for the patch.

I went through Daniell and Smith's White Mountain Guide, 28th Edition and, based on the trail descriptions and the input of the girls, came up with a list of trails.  I then asked the community at Views From the Top (VFTT) to post their advice.

Since there is no one definite measure of what constitutes frightening, extremely difficult, or very interesting, I created two sections of this list.  The first section consists of required trails, ones that most agreed were especially tricky, scrambly, and/or just plain fun.  The second section consists of elective trails, trails that some found frightening but others found tame.  One can choose any five trails from that section, based on what the individual hiker wishes to experience (ladders, a wee bit of scrambling, boulders, etc.)  On Monday I hope to post a short description of each trail; I'll take the descriptions from Daniell and Smith's White Mountain Guide (and credit the authors accordingly).

Required trails:

Baldface Circle Trail (southern portion, from South Baldface Shelter to the summit of South Baldface)
Caps Ridge Trail
Castle Ravine Trail
Castle Trail
Chemin des Dames
Eagle Cliff Trail (to viewpoint)
Flume Slide Trail
Great Gulf Trail
Great Gully Trail
Huntington Ravine Trail
Ice Gulch Path
Madison Gulf Trail
Mount Percival Trail (boulder cave route)
North Slide, N. Tripyramid
Six Husbands Trail
South Slide, S. Tripyramid
Sphinx Trail
Subway (King Ravine Trail)
Table Rock Trail (from eastern trailhead, to ledge)
Zeacliff Trail (note: I might replace this with Percy Peaks Trail)

In addition to the twenty required trails, one must hike any five of the following:

Airline Trail
Algonquin Trail
Beaver Brook Trail
Brook Trail
Blueberry Ledge Trail
Desolation Trail
Devil's Hopyard
Goodrich Rock Trail
Hi-Cannon Trail
Osseo Trail
Percy Peaks Trail (note: I might replace this with Zeacliff Trail)
Piper Trail
Walden Trail
Wildcat Ridge Trail from route 16 to E peak
Willey Range (ladder section up Mt. Willey)

If anyone besides us has any interest in doing this list, here are our rules:

Get to the trailhead however you like.
Given the nature of the trails, no special winter patch will ever be created.
Must hike the entire trail on your own two feet.

Above all -- hike at your own risk.  We are not liable for any injuries or accidents.  These are tough trails and should not be attempted by the inexperienced or the cavalier. 

If you take on this list, then let us know when you finish and we'll send you a patch.  Please note if the number of finishers/applicants ends up being more than we expected, then we may have to start charging for the patch (just expenses, no profits).

Your application should be sent via email to:

Type the following in the body of your email (I will not open attachments):
Your name, mailing address, names of the trails and the date you hiked each. Comments and links to trip reports would be nice, but they're not required. You're on the honor system.  Karma will eventually get you if you lie.

See you out there!


Marcy said...

Awesome concept and design! Love it! I've only hiked the Flume Slide Trail from your list, but it was rainy and slippery and I was inexperienced, so I think I get extra credit for that. We hiked the Mahoosic Notch, which was pretty tough, and a peak in there somewhere had some scrambling that scared me silly. I think it's awesome that you'll be giving patches for your hiking challenge.

Anonymous said...

Followed the discussion on VFTT. I think you should have a start date of Jan 1 2012. That way peple are hiking these trails with the list in mind as opposed to having hiked them years ago.

Anonymous said...

That's awesome. Good for you! I would like to earn your patch, but you won’t find me on some of these trails. Being afraid of heights, but love hiking I can definitely relate to these trails being terrifying.

I made the mistake hiking up Huntington Ravine Trail and was stuck in the same place for about an hour before I got the nerve to get going again.

Going down the Beaver Brook Trail was very tough and since it was wet and slippery it made for a really scary situation for me.

My black lab wouldn't go down the Blueberry Ledge Trail, we had to turn around and hike back down the way we came- Dicey's Mill trail (which made for a very long hike after doing Whiteface and Passaconaway).

I have always disliked going down the steep Willey Range trail and I hated that ladder.

What about the routes of Tuckerman Ravine (Left Gully?), Hillman’s Highway and/or the Boot Spur trail?

Cumulus said...

Too bad you didn't post this to Rocks. I would have nominated the Kinsman Ridge Trail between the intersections with Lonesome Lake Trail and Hi-Cannon Trail, just for that one spot. If you've hiked it, especially in the winter, you probably know which spot I mean.

I've only hiked a few of these trails, but Flume Slide Trail is one of the three toughest trails I've been on, and the only one of the three in New Hampshire. (The other two are the Long Trail between the Needle and the Forehead on Mansfield, and the trail in the Dacks which ascends Saddleback from the Basin side.)

Patricia Ellis Herr, Alexandra Herr, and Sage Herr said...

Cumulus, others have recently suggested adding that section of Kinsman...I'll add it to the elective section.

Marcy and Anonymous (2), thanks for the kudos. Anonymous, if anyone else strongly suggests Tuckermans, Boot Spur, Hillman's etc. then I may add them later. So far, no one else has mentioned them. I've been on Tuck's -- it's steep, but not particularly frightening, so IMO I don't think it should qualify.

Anonymous (1) -- I'll allow past hikes to qualify. If someone's done them, then they've done them.

Anonymous said...

Wondering if one needs to ascend AND descend the trail? TY

Patricia Ellis Herr, Alexandra Herr, and Sage Herr said...

Hi there,

You may ascend OR descend, no need to do both. Indeed, on some of these trails (Huntington Ravine, for example), it is strongly recommended you do NOT descend -- far too dangerous, and you might cause a problem for those trying to come up.

FYI, there is a Facebook Page for the T25. Conversation is slow right now, since it's winter and most of these trails are best traveled after the snow and ice have melted. Here's the link if you're interested --