Thursday, October 20, 2022

Liberty-Haystack Slide: 10/19/22

On a crisp, sunny day I paid a repeat visit to a slide in a hidden basin between Mt. Liberty and Little Haystack Mountain, on the west side of the Franconia Range. My first visit here was a snowshoe trek with Cath Goodwin in January, on a cold day with deep powder in the woods. I wanted to see this slide, which by my best guess fell during an October 1995 storm, in the snowless season.

From the first brook crossing on Falling Waters Trail, I headed southeast up a slope through hardwood forest with a mostly leafless canopy. The woods were wet from overnight run, and my boots took a bit of a soaking.

 There was still some bronze color in the understory.

After a while I reached the brook that drains the ravine in which the slide is located.

Reprising our winter route, I bushwhacked up the slope parallel to but above the brook, through mostly good woods.

These woods were open and dry.

A glimpse of the high ridge across the valley.

It's not really a bushwhack unless you encounter some nasty stuff.

After a tussle with some dense growth while descending a steep slope, I emerged at the base of the slide.

This is a gravel and rock rubble type of slide, with no exposed bedrock. Little plant life has taken hold on this part of the slide after 27 years.

Higher up, a nice view of the Kinsmans opens beyond a spine of gravel.

An unusual feature of this slide is that it splits into north and south forks on either side of the gravel spine. I ascended the north fork (on the right in this picture).

Looking down the south fork.

Side view.

Looking up to a southwestern spur of Little Haystack.

One of the largest boulders on the slide.

The widest swath of the slide offers a broad-spreading view of the Kinsmans, perhaps the best I've seen of them. I hung out here in the sun for quite a while.

Then I headed up to check out the short but steep upper part of the slide.

This part of the slide also has two tracks and a central spine.

Top o' the slide.


Up here the view expands to include Cannon Mountain on the right.

Closer look at the Kinsmans.

The three Cannon Balls.

Mt. Moosilauke in the distance, beyond Mt. Wolf.

Looking up the spine on the main part of the slide.

Heading down.

A solitary tamarack (larch).

One of many red rocks on the slide.

A good-sized brook flows downstream from the slide.

Back down through the open woods.

Beautiful sky today.

Random boulder.


Late afternoon in the hardwoods.


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