Tuesday, January 31, 2017


After an approach through Dickey Notch, solid snowpack in the woods provided great bushwhacking conditions for a long ramble up the valley of Shattuck Brook, on the south side of Mt. Tecumseh, a remote area not often visited. After climbing up onto a ridge I visited four new (to me) view ledges north of Hogback Mountain.

The trail through Dickey Notch starts 0.1 mile up the trail towards Dickey Mountain.

Wild turkey tracks in Dickey Notch.

Beavers at work.

Beaver pond in Dickey Notch, overlooked by a rocky spur of Cone Mountain.

Looking south down the chain of beaver ponds.

Fine open hardwoods at the base of Cone Mountain.

Some old yellow blazes marked the way along the hardpacked trail.

From the north end of the Dickey Notch Trail, I headed off trail up the east side of the Shattuck Brook valley, climbing through hardwoods along the lower slopes of Dickey Mountain. Snow conditions here were rock-solid, ideal for easy snowshoe whacking.

I came upon what looked like an otter slide, heading downslope towards the brook.

A few areas were hobblebush-y, but the firm snow made passage much easier than in summer.

Fisher Mountain through the trees.

Birches and blue sky.

Looking back through the open forest.

Old hardwoods at 2350 ft.

Moose action.

Lonely Shattuck Brook, high in the valley.

Moose postholes.

Blowdowns and spruce traps - step gingerly!

A nice glade climbing towards the ridgecrest north of Hogback Mountain.

Mostly good woods continue.

A short side trip to the first ledge area north of Hogback rewarded with this view of the Sandwich Dome massif.

The snow-caked summit of Sandwich Dome. Jennings Peak below on the left.

Looking up the ridge to the SW peak of Green Mountain (L) and Foss Peak (R). The next ledge objective was visible under SW Green.

Dickey Mountain and distant horizons.

A peek at West Tecumseh.

The woods were a bit thicker on the flat crest north of the first ledges.

A cleaved boulder.

Impassable terrain ahead, time to retreat and try a flanking maneuver. I had to do this twice to get around .
ramparts of steep broken ledge.

Success! With a bit more climbing I reached the southwestern of three adjacent sets of snow-crusted ledges.

Looking down on Hogback Mountain.

A steep push up through clinging scrub lifted me to a higher ledge patch (elevation 2980 ft.) and another view over Hogback.

Mount Moosilauke was buried in a snow squall.

This is part of an expansive area of ledge and scrub, perhaps the result of a forest fire that burned the ridges south of Mount Tecumseh around 1820.

Sandwich Dome beyond the slope of Foss Peak, from east-facing ledges.

The head of the Shattuck Brook valley.

Looking down the Shattuck Brook valley to Welch and Dickey Mountains.

Zoom on Welch and Dickey.

The massive shoulder of Black Mountain, with Sachem Peak below.

The SW peak of Green, close by.

A ridgetop erratic.

Beam me up!

Heading back down the SW ledges.

Looking back at a steep pitch that got me around one of the ledge ramparts.

Looking up Shattuck Brook.

A golden glade on the return trip down the valley.

A drooping bracket fungus.

Sunset glow - one of the benefits of a late exit.

Where the otter began its slide.

Heading for home.

This area may be unfamiliar to many, here is the GPS track.

Zoomed in a bit more to show the ledgy areas.