What a view from Jackson. The snow blown trees was so (if you'll pardon the pun) cool! The original idea was to do a traverse, heading north on the Webster Cliff Tr to Mt Webster, over to Mt Jackson, and down to the Highland Center where Pauline would be waiting for me. Then we would share some hot chocolate. However, after talking to the folks in the Highland Center, I decided to just do the Webster Jackson loop. Too many blow downs, and I wasn't sure about the sheer cliffs that you had to scramble up along the Webster Cliff Tr.
So instead I hiked up the to Elephant Head -- a short 0.2mi spur trail -- with Pauline and enjoyed the view before continuing south on the Webster-Jackson Tr, while she returned north to hike around the lake, and back to the Highland Center.
The route to Jackson was a fairly steady grade, and I kept a good pace, even passing a number of people my age and younger. The last few hundred feet to the top was a little sketch, as there was nothing but exposed rock face and ice over the rock. Once at the top of Jackson, I looked over at Washington, but it was shrouded in clouds. A couple Grey Jays were flying around and landed on the top of a couple trees waiting for a handout. Pretty birds. Glancing over to Washington before heading to west to Mt Webster, I saw the clouds had moved and I could clearly see the weather towers. One more look at the view of Crawford Notch and I was on my way to Webster.
I didn’t get very far before I came upon a sheer drop I had to butt slide down. Then some blow down trees, only about 6 of them clustered. The rest of the way was smooth sailing, and I arrived back at the Highland Center about 5.5 hours later. Hugs and hot chocolate Pauline ensued. Weather was Partly cloudy, 42F. Fantastic weather. Hands did get a little cold at the top, along the way from Jackson to Webster. Windbreaker and Patagonia Capilene was an awesome combination again. Just the Capilene till I got to Jackson, then put on my windbreaker.
Brought: Day pack, go bag, winter puffy, fleece, LL Bean long sleeve. Wore Patagonia Capilene, EMS pants, winter hiking boots (my feet were comfortable since the corn is now gone), windbreaker. Didn't use the windbreaker till close to the top, then wore it the rest of the way up, and all the way down. EMS beanie. got chilly, but was warmed up when I put the windbreaker's hood up. Native Shades were awesome. Didn't fog up unless I stopped moving or put my hood up. Didn't reduce light in the woods much at all; hardly noticeable.
Wish I brought: Winter caps on the treking poles.