Ascent of Mount Watatic on 2009-10-18

Climber: Yu-Pu Wang

Others in Party:4 others
Date:Sunday, October 18, 2009
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Mount Watatic
    Elevation:1831 ft / 558 m

Ascent Trip Report

This was originally planned as a foliage trip.

It was raining most of the way to the trailhead, turning to wet snow a few minutes past Fitchburg. (38°F at Fitchburg)

The temperature was 33°F at the trailhead. It was a moderately steep hike on wet grounds, with no scrambling required. The trail was marked with yellow blazes. Snow started accumulating about 2/3 of the way, but far from deep enough to hinder normal hiking. There was a wooden shelter close to the summit, where the trail turned right (eastward). After the shelter the trail flattened out as we reached the ridge line.

Immediately before the summit one trail forked to the left, looking like a 4WD-navigable road (or even a paved road?), with a blaze on the ground saying "(arrow) NH" .

When we reached the summit, spending about 1.5 hr, it was about 30°F, snowing in a moderate rate and very windy, creating near whiteout conditions. Everything was covered with an inch or so of wet snow. There was a cairn and several concrete platforms on the summit, one of which was engraved "1939."

We stayed on the summit for only about 5 minutes and quickly descended the mountain, for fear that snow accumulation might hinder our way down, as the snow was getting heavier and we did not bring any snow gears. We finally saw the first (and only) climber besides us, taking a rest on his way up.

It took about an hour to return to the trailhead. Some snow just started accumulating around there. Snow changed back to rain as we drove close to Fitchburg, and later changing back to snow again (but did not accumulate) in Boston.

This was the first snow in Boston for the winter 2009-10.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:588 ft / 179 m
    Round-Trip Distance:2.2 mi / 3.5 km
    Route:Wapack trail
    Trailhead:Wapack trailhead on MA Rte 119  1243 ft / 378 m
    Quality:3 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Snow on Ground
    Nights Spent:0 nights away from roads
    Weather:Snowing, Cold, Very Windy, Low Clouds
wet snow
Ascent Statistics
    Time:0 Days 1 Hours 30 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time:0 Days 1 Hours 0 Minutes

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