Two-Day Hike Around Ethan Pond Loop,
including Mt Tom, Mt Field, and Mt Willey
Fred Knight
2012 July 7-8
Fred's Home


Panoramic 210-degree view from Mt Tom. Mt Field at right; Mt Washington at left center.
Click once to get full field; click again to get higher resolution and pan across image.
Vista

Panoramic 150-degree view from Mt Willey
Click once to get full field; click again to get higher resolution and pan across image.
Vista Note: Constructed with Steve Smith's method in Photoshop: Photoshop>File>Automate>PhotoMerge... Auto, Blend, Vignette Removal, Geometric Distortion Correction.


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I took a moderate 2-day hike, starting and ending at the Crawford Notch AMC Highland Center, around the loop of the Avalon-Willey Range-Ethan Pond-A-to-Z Trails. See AMC trip planner here. I stayed at Ethan Pond Campsite #5. All ideal weather conditions with temperatures in the 50s and 60s, no rain, and breeze. The night was particularly warm, as I never zipped up my bag and had the rain fly off to get more breee through the tent.

On the first day I did the three peaks, stopping to enjoy the view from Mt Willey and enjoying a Ramen noodle lunch before tackling the steep descent (1700' in 0.9 miles) to the Ethan Pond Trail. I reached the campsite at 4:30, found open platforms, chose the farthest, ate dinner, surveyed the pond (but didn't swim), paid my fee ($8), and went to sleep by 7pm.

The second day started by breaking camp swiftly in order to head for breakfast at Thoreau Falls. I stayed there for an hour; see pics. Then I headed for Zealand Hut, where I got some water. The trek back up to the Mt Tom spur trail was more than I expected. I made it there by 11:15, had my last egg-potato-bacon wrap, and headed back down the Avalon Trail to the car. Just after I started on the last leg, a sprinter passed me. He was out of sight in a couple minutes. Most of the other people I passed (some of them twice, once on each day) were closer to my pace.

I was on the AT along Ethan Pond Trail, which is beautifully groomed with bridges. Lots of streams in the flat area. No trouble finding water; used my platypus only. Very few bugs, but I did get a few black fly bites (but nothing like a month ago).

No gear problems. In fact, I used everything except first aid. The new velcro sewn on my pack straps solved their slippage. Food was fine: 2 Ramen noodles, 4 wraps, nuts, and cheese.

Summary: 2 days, ~20 miles, 5600' elevation gain

--Fred (aka tarpman)


previous next Fred's Home 20 images
Mt Field
Mt Field
One pile of rocks
Eating lunch on Mt WIlley
Eating lunch on Mt WIlley
Looking out at vista; cooked Ramen
Going for campsite
Going for campsite
Joins AT here.
Ethan Pond site #5
Ethan Pond site #5
flat, nice cooking area, few bugs, warm night
Ethan Pond just after sunrise
Ethan Pond just after sunrise
On my way to breakfast
Ethan Pond at 0535
Ethan Pond at 0535
Gorgeous morning
Nearing breakfast site
Nearing breakfast site
Thoreau Falls ahead
bridge across stream leading to Thoreau Falls
bridge across stream leading to Thoreau Falls
Looks fairly new
Thoreau Falls
Thoreau Falls
breakfast above
Above Thoreau Falls
Above Thoreau Falls
while heating water for breakfast
Spent an hour above Thoreau Falls
Spent an hour above Thoreau Falls
water flowing by
Granite restaurant
Granite restaurant
breakfast pool
breakfast pool
Above Thoreau Falls
Above Thoreau Falls
Shadowy pool
Shadowy pool
sun was poking into stream
Looking out over Thoreau Falls
Looking out over Thoreau Falls
such a pretty spot-~ 8 miles from the nearest trailhead
Continuing on the Ethan Pond Trail
Continuing on the Ethan Pond Trail
With Zealand Hut in the distance.
Zealand Pond
Zealand Pond
on the A-Z Trail, heading toward Mt Tom again
All the water streams had teh iron tint
All the water streams had teh iron tint
Trail in cloudy time
Trail in cloudy time
Camera seems to do much better in low-contrast scenes