RATTLESNAKE MOUNTAIN: 4/24/15
With the higher summits once again in winter's grip, I headed south to Rumney for a snow-free late afternoon hike up this little ledgy, fire-scarred peak (1,594 ft.). It was a raw, grey, November-like day with temps in the mid-30s. The trail starts off Buffalo Road, where there is a small, rough parking area.
The lower section climbs gradually through a nice piney forest.
Bare ground hardwoods and a mossy, tumbling stream - welcome sights after a long cold winter.
The Rattlesnake trail is a good workout, ascending 1,000 ft. in 1.2 miles. For a trail description and more on Rattlesnake Mountain, click here.
In one section it follows a little hogback with drainages below on either side.
Despite the gloomy skies, it was a treat to enjoy snow-free hiking!
Just before the summit I went out to my favorite of the many ledge perches, a secluded vantage on the west side of the summit, reached by an overgrown side path
Especially neat is the view north to the various spurs of Carr Mountain. Whenever I look at this view, I think back to the memorable bushwhack I did with master 'whacker J.R. Stockwell in 2005, traversing the trailless six-mile ridge from Rattlesnake to the summit of Carr Mountain.
Looking up the Baker River valley to Smarts Mountain, Black Hill and Mt. Cube.
Peering east down the Baker valley to the hills of the Lakes Region.
The windmills on Tenney and Fletcher Mtns. are prominent across the valley.
Mount Cardigan off to the south.
Approaching the summit.
The summit ledges, looking northeast to Stinson Mountain. It was cold up there today!
A closer look at the Carr ridges, with the snow-crusted summit peering over in back.
Looking back across the summit with Mt. Cardigan in the distance.
A northeastern ledge viewpoint and Stinson Mountain.
The loop on the east side of the summit area is a fun ramble as it meanders around a wooded plateau.
On the way down I bushwhacked through open hardwoods along the nameless, attractive stream that parallels the lower part of the trail..
A short distance in from the trailhead I followed a well-used side path to this nice little cascade on the brook, a fine way to wrap up this nifty short (2.5 mi. round trip) hike.