Peaks 31 and 32 Done! Mount Flume and Liberty Loop

Flume Liberty Loop with a little extra

Did the Flume Liberty Loop on the 12th of September, it was a long hike, with one of the steepest sections I have ever hiked up. The slide is no joke! As you can see we had a little extra due to a funny story I will mention a little later, but the splits show just how steep the section is!

1,342 ft in a mile!

As you can see mile 5 was a brutal hike, 1,342 feet in a single mile, it was basically straight up, it is hard to see in the below picture but I assure you this is steep!

There was about 1.2 miles of this, crawling over bald rock faces, I put my trekking poles away because I needed my hands to haul my butt up the face. It was rough but fun, just please for the love of god don’t go down this direction! We saw a few people coming down but most went other directions. I can’t imagine going down this way. Also if it is wet do not attempt this trail (unless you know what you are doing).

Coming up to Mount Flume, I forgot that the Saturday after 9/11 volunteers bring flags up the 48 4000 footers all over New Hampshire. 

Flume and Liberty with the flag flying on top!

Top of Flume with Trish and the flag.

We walked over to Liberty and had a beautiful view of Franconia notch.

A little panorama immediately coming off of Liberty. 

Looking back at Liberty from the Franconia Ridge Trail, it was a great as you can see if you look at the map we took a little side trail with a funny story. There was a guy standing leaning against the sign, and from the smell of things he had recently passed gas and it smelled horrible, so we said Hi and quickly walked passed him. Low and behold that was our turn, so we added 1.5-2 miles to our hike but it was mostly flat. Actually it turning up hill was how I realized we were on the wrong trail. The trail toward the end felt like it was going to go on forever. Luckily it did not and it end, I ended up getting home around 8:30 pm. One thing I found interesting is the amount of people that were out in the woods without any idea where they were going. They went out in the woods without a map or a phone or any sort of information. I must have been asked the direction to the parking lot half a dozen times. It was really pretty shocking, always have your phone and a paper map with you. Please try to learn how to use the paper map while you have your phone so you can learn how to do it in case your phone dies at one point. Just keep in mind you move slower than you think you do.

Mount Isolation

Mount Isolation

Mount Isolation is a killer of a hike, my buddy Jay and I set off on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. I knew it was going to be a long one and I warned him that by the end he would be miserable, that turned out to be true.

Start of the day

Started the day feeling pretty good, we hiked up the first few miles and things started flattening out. I was getting excited, if the terrain is like this we would be closer to 8 hours instead of the 10 that I feared.

Tough Muddy Area

It is hard to see here but the terrain in the flatish part of the mountain was 2-3 miles of hoping from rock to rock hoping that you don’t fall off and step into an ankle deep puddle. This was a tough hike, it wasn’t the hardest or the most technical but miles and miles of bouncing from rock to rock is hard on the feet.

tons of river crossings

There were tons of river crossings as well, I want to say 5-6 in each direction, luckily the first week of September the water was at a low. We didn’t have to take off the boots once. 

finally made it to the top

The top of the Mountain was gorgeous and we had beautiful weather!

 We had a Grey Jay follow us on our mountain adventure.

The view from Mount Isolation on the Eastern side of the mountain.

Mount Washington off in the distance

You can see the weather station on the top of Mount Washinton

Mount Isolation Geo Survey

Our Grey Jay friend eyeing the PB&J that Jay thankfully remembered!

Laying down for the picture of me at the summit, it was a very hard hike.

Jay taking a picture of the Geo Marker. I was a very hard hike, quite long, I would highly recommend going later in the season when things are drier. The river is at an all time low right now. Even with that it was muddy, I can’t imagine hiking this in the spring. The hike just really long and sneakily technical since you are doing a lot of water crossings and a lot of rock hopping to avoid mud. It took us 9ish hours of moving time and 9 hours 37 mins of total time so we didn’t have a lot of down time on this hike. There is plenty of water available and I should have brought a filter with me and taken a one water bottle instead of bringing 4 liters (8.8lbs).

The view from Mount Isolation is beautiful, a great view of Mount Washington, Jackson, and Eisenhower. I would love to hike it again, just make sure it is dry and you prepare for a long day!