Sunday, August 03, 2008

Thunderstorms at Monadnock.

Yesterday we set out on a family hike, destination: the summit of Mount Monadnock. It is located in New Hampshire, about an hour and a half's drive from Boston, and according to wikipedia is the 2nd-most summitted mountain in the world behind Mount Fuji in Japan. Monadnock rises about 2000 feet above the surrounding landscape and a variety of accessible (albeit rocky) trails head towards the top.

When we started our ascent it was still relatively sunny with only some mild cloud cover. It was about noon.

The climbing is not too technically difficult (at least, I was able to do it with Sophie attached to my front and a backpack to my back, and perhaps more impressively Claire was able to do it in her current 24 weeks' pregnant state).

Still, it was a fairly steep ascent, and we took lots of breaks as we headed up.
Unfortunately, as we got within about 30 minutes of the top, we started hearing thunder off in the distance and the sky grew dark. We pressed on a little while longer, but soon we received word that the park rangers had closed off the summit for fear of impending bad weather. Not wanting tomorrow's Boston Globe headline to read, "Stupid Man Bringing Pregnant Wife and 1-Year-Old Daughter To Summit Mount Monadnock Is Struck By Lightning", we decided the better part of valor would be to turn back.

Had we made it to the summit--we will next time--this is the view we could have seen...
And it's a good thing that we turned back when we did, because about 30 minutes before reaching the parking lot there was a veritable downpour which caused us to get completely DRENCHED. Sophie took things in stride and actually thought it was really fun, but definitely appreciated being dried off in the car upon our return.


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