Ascent of Blue Mountain-Northampton County High Point on 2011-12-31

Climber: Eli Wolfhagen

Others in Party:Brian Waldman
Priya Palekar-Singh
Date:Saturday, December 31, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Blue Mountain-Northampton County High Point
    Elevation:1695 ft / 516 m

Ascent Trip Report

I decided to lead a few friends out on the Appalachian Trail for a small hike while others primped and preened before the New Year's Eve celebrations.

We got a little bit later start than I had wanted, so when we go to the trailhead which was about half an hour from our Poconos abode I hurriedly set off with Brian and Priya. There were a few other cars in the parking lot but we did not end up seeing anyone on the trail but 6 deer and 2 hawks.

The bulk of the 980' elevation gain come out of the gate. Unfortunately at around the 1,300' mark I realized that I had left the keys in the car, so gave Brian and Priya a nice break while I jogged all the way back down to the trailhead. After huffing all the way back up to Brian and Priya, gulping down some water and stretching the calves out a bit, we set on the rest of our way up to the county highpoint.

The highpoint itself was overly underwhelming. The old topographical map shows that there should have been a lookout on top, but all we found were a handful of radio towers and an odd shaped bluish dome about 6 feet high. On the way back down we decided to take the service road and then paved road back to our car. There were two relatively easy gates that we could walk around or through, but the last gate (or first gate if you are ascending) took the form of a ten foot high chain link fence. Thankfully it was possible to skirt the fence in a perhaps one-foot wide path that was overgrown with brambles. I couple of skin pricks later we were back at the car and heading back for some champagne and carrying on.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1155 ft / 351 m
    Total Elevation Loss:1155 ft / 351 m
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail
    Weather:Cool, Calm, Clear
partly cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:1095 ft / 333 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 715 ft / 218 m; Extra: 380 ft / 115m
    Loss on way in:380 ft / 115 m
    Route:Appalachian Trail
    Start Trailhead:AT Trailhead  980 ft / 298 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:775 ft / 236 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 715 ft / 218 m; Extra: 60 ft / 18m
    Gain on way out:60 ft / 18 m
    Route:Appalachian Trail
    End Trailhead:AT Trailhead  980 ft / 298 m

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