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Undercast in Franconia Notch

Franconia Ridge w/ undercast

When we crested Kinsman Ridge, the first thing we saw was Franconia Ridge floating above a billowy cloud of undercast. Also called a cloud inversion, undercast occurs when a cold layer of air is trapped in a canyon or mountain pass and topped with a layer of warm air, which …

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Backpacking a Gentian Pond Loop

Gentian Pond in Autumn

Gentian Pond is in the Mahoosuc Range, one of the hardest sections of the Appalachian Trail. I hiked a one night loop up to the AT shelter there, visiting two big waterfalls called Giant Falls and Dryad Falls on the way. My friend Ken and I had stopped by this …

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Backpacking a Speckled Mountain – Haystack Notch Loop

View of Mt Washington from Speckled Mountain summit.

Most of my backpacking trips this year have turned into guidebook chapters for Backpacking the White Mountain 4000 footers, instead of personal trip reports. But my latest backpacking trip through the Caribou-Speckled Wilderness doesn’t have what it takes to be a guidebook chapter. While scenic and wild, the route passes through …

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