White Mountains Winter Outing - 2/18/2012
President’s day weekend is not what most people would consider the best time for a two night hiking trip to New Hampshire’s White Mountains. While a day hike in 26 inches of snow might be considered a fun adventure by a small minority, sleeping in an unheated cabin with the thermometer reading 10o F is not a tempting prospect to most sane individuals. That said, the folks who joined the Rhode Island Chapter of the Sierra Club for their inaugural winter outing to the White Mountains didn’t want it any other way.
Early on Saturday, February 18, the group left Providence for Franconia Notch, NH, then snowshoed up to Lonesome Lake Hut (elevation 2760 ft), an AMC shelter with idyllic frozen lake views. The main hut was equipped with a fully functional kitchen and a set of climbing rock rings which provided great entertainment for everyone staying at the hut. Perhaps most entertaining was the impromptu pull-up contest that happened; the hands down winner of which was a small girl no older than 9. The hut also had a caretaker on staff who lit a nice warm fire in the wood burning stove each evening. The sleeping cabins were located separately and were unheated, so suitable equipment was necessary.
Hiking conditions were mostly good for snowshoes, though there were a few slippery spots. As a result, the outings participants trekked their way up to two peaks and one observation point, averaging 4200 ft (North Kinsman, South Kinsman, Greenleaf Hut). Said Coy Pemberton, one of the participants, "The snowy scenery and epic views more than made up for the cold nights and freezing mornings."
Sierra Club Rhode Island