Friday, July 10, 2009

Mt. Chorcorua 7/5

A friend and I hiked Mt. Chorcorua in the southern portion of the White Mountains of New Hampshire back on 7/5. The weather was cooperative and we had a great day to hike one of the most climbed summits of the White Mountains. We chose to hike the Champney Falls Trail, from the Kancamagus Highway, for 3.2 miles which then joins the Piper trail 0.6 miles from the summit. This was 7.6 mile round trip with an elevation gain of about 2250 feet.

Champney Falls Brook along the "loop trail" on the way to the summit.
By White Mountain standards this would be considered a moderate hike, but seemed more rigorous than the recent Mt. Greylock hike we had taken.
Approaching the Chorcorua Summit

We saw only a few other hikers on the way up, but once we reached the Piper Trail, were a few other trails merged, we saw several more. Several had dogs with them, and most appeared to be well behaved and under control. Once on the summit it was easy to see why its so heavily hiked, as the views were very impressive, the Lakes Region of NH to the south, White Mountain peaks to nearly all around, the Pleasant Mountain Range to the east (in Maine) and many nearby Lakes. Despite being a clear day, not too surprisingly, the higher Presidential peaks were surrounded by heavy cloud cover.

Easy to see why this is such a popular hike, this was the view to the west.

This "Goldie" was a bundle of energy bolting every which way, it must have covered 20 miles during its round trip. This dog was with a very intersting family, all the girls and mother wore skirts with pants underneath, one of the girls had polka dot shirt, plaid pants and striped shirt.

I birded by ear and bird song was limited on the way up, beginning at 10:30AM. What I found odd was missing Blackpoll Warbler on the way up and only hearing 1 Swainson's Thrush, each of these species were much more vocal on the way down in the afternoon.
The bird list:
Species....Number reported
Turkey Vulture....1
Blue-headed Vireo....1
Red-eyed Vireo....5
Blue Jay....3
Winter Wren....8
Golden-crowned Kinglet....2
Swainson's Thrush....8
Hermit Thrush....2
Black-throated Blue Warbler....8
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle)...5
Black-throated Green Warbler....6
Blackburnian Warbler....1
Blackpoll Warbler....5
Black-and-white Warbler....1
American Redstart....1
White-throated Sparrow....3
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored)....5
Purple Finch.....2

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