Last weekend I spent Saturday night on top of Mt Cabot in northern New Hampshire. It was a stormy night and I was glad to take refuge in Cabot Cabin, a fully enclosed house, near the mountain's summit.
Sleeping in this fully enclosed shelter brought back some pleasant memories of similar buildings on the Long Trail in Vermont. Unlike many of the open Lean-to's you find on the Appalachian Trail, these buildings come with creature comforts like windows, bunk bed platforms, and built-in seating areas for cooking and hanging out.
Cabot Cabin is actually quite luxurious even by Long Trail standards, in that the windows work, and the walls are insulated. I couldn't help but thinking about what a nice shelter this would be for climb up Mt Cabot in the winter.
Although I had the shelter all to myself, it sleeps at least 8. There is a back room and a front room. The back room was 2 windows and 4 sleeping platforms, which can hold 2 people each. While the front room is meant for eating and food preparation, there is some additional floorspace which could be used to jam in a few more people in a pinch.
The shelter is maintained by a troop of Boy Scouts from the near by town of Jefferson, New Hampshire, and is in pretty good shape. Despite some peeling paint, the interior is kept clean and the roof is sound. There used to be a stove in the cabin, but it has been removed to reduce the danger of fire, and all that remains is the stove pipe on the roof.
Originally built to house a Fire Warden who manned a now defunct fire tower on the summit of Cabot, the shelter is open to all for free on a first-come, first serve basis. Located about 0.3 miles from the summit of Cabot, it is conveniently located for hikers traversing the Kilkenny Ridge Trail from the South Pond or Mt. Starr King ends of the trail.
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