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Trip 3 to Mount Lafayette 5260’ 4/24/02

8 Miles 3600’ Elevation gain

Kevin, Judy and Emma

That’s right, Mount Lafayette again. The trail was still packed with snow which made it rise above the surrounding melting snow because it was packed and froze harder. Like on the Kinsmans last spring the trail was like walking along an icy ridge and trying not to slip off into the soft snow where you would sink in up to your thigh., esssentially “postholing”. The difference today was the temperatures were in the sixties! I was climbing mount Lafayette in the snow wearing shorts and a t-shirt! Of course I carried warmer clothes as I was sure we would need them at higher elevations, but the most I put on was a polortec sweater. We had originally planned to stop at the Greenleaf Hut, but even though Jude was having some trouble, when we were sitting there on the deck of Greenleaf looking at the summit, she felt she could make another mile and wanted to go on. About three quarters of the way into that mile she wished she had not gone on, but with the iron will I’ve become accustomed to when she wants a summit, she drove herself up the rest of the way. Happy that she did, too, for the views were excellent. On this trip she had worn a new set of “ice cleats”, but they still weren’t crampons, and although they had points they were still inferior to crampons. Although they worked out OK on this trip, on a later trip she would pull them off in frustration, as they just would never stay on right no matter what we did to tighten them down. If you’re going to do this, crampons is the only way to go. I can’t remember if we had trekking poles yet on this hike but they certainly help by letting you keep your balance going up and holding back your headlong hurtles coming down. I won’t hike without one now. We got back down to the parking lot without incident and it was still as warm as when we started. It had really been an excellent day to climb. We had the mountain to ourselves for the most part, and it was excellent clear views on a warm day. We were both glad we had done it, and besides, it was still on Emma’s list.
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