I had the opportunity to take two friends on a hike. While they’ve hiked in the past, it had been quite a while since either one had hiked a hike in NH. I wanted to choose a summit that was high on reward, while low on effort, and preferably not too far from where we were staying. Mt Cardigan fit the bill perfectly.
We were on vacation, so we all slept in, and as a result we got to the trailhead around 12:30. The lot was full, and we needed to park on the road. However, some people were already done for the day, so we were able to get a spot not too far from the lot.
Somehow in my excitement to get our hike started, I led us up something that was not the trail. Not shown on any map. I’m guessing it may have been a logging road? Or a forestry road? No matter, by the time I noticed, we were almost at a point that reconnected with the regular trail, West Ridge Trail.
What happens when you go hiking with your friends who do motorsports?
The hike wasn’t too long, mostly a pleasant trail. There were some steep bits, but nothing too bad. Then the wide open top with incredible views.
It was somewhere near the summit that Jess earned her trail name, Pollyanna. She’s always optimistic. She always sees the positive side of whatever circumstance she’s in. Windy at the summit? At least she’s in fresh air. Tiring hike? She’s doing something good for her body. At a point when a lot of people might complain, she always sees the bright side, and hiking was no different.
There’s a firetower on the top of Cardigan, which also means this hike counted for the Firetowers patch!
Lots of mushrooms later, we made it back down to the trailhead.
Extra bonus, we made it to Vulgar Brewing, which means this hike counted for THREE patches: 52 WAV, Firetowers, and Brew and View.
- Distance: 3 miles
- Elevation gain: 1,138 feet
- Total Time: 3 hours, 35 minutes
- Moving Time: 2 hours, 38 minutes