Ascent to Mount Lafayette-5,000' on 2014-04-07

Climber: Megan Cheney

Others in Party:Megan Cheney -- Trip Report or GPS Track
Jaime Eagan
Date:Monday, April 7, 2014
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Point Reached:Mount Lafayette - 5,000'
    Location:USA-New Hampshire
    Elevation:5240 ft / 1597 m

Ascent Trip Report

Franconia Ridge, 7:30AM- 1:15PM
Megan, Jaime, Tess, KBizz

This was going to be a long one. The plan was to go up the steeper incline to Lafayette, cross the ridge passing through Mount Lincoln & Franconia, then descend down Haystack, 15 miles in total. We started off good, my pace- a little slower than I wanted but my calves were on fire and I couldn't help it. We made it to the AMC Greenleaf Hut (3 miles in) where we refueled and enjoyed a bit of pack off- slack off. There was a small group of guys there doing some repairs on the hut when we arrived. Once refreshed we continued on where we traveled up the slick, ice covered incline. We got close to the first summit (about 200') where we caught up to a group of older hikers, all with poles and micro spikes. They attempted to travel up the shear wall of ice to reach the peak. One man lost his footing (even with the spikes) and had a close call where he slid uncontrollably for a good 50' and almost off a small cliff. Needless to say they turned back, where Tess followed behind them scared for her life. KBizz (the only on with micro spikes on) yelled down to me to stay put because he didn't think we'd be able to continue. Jam, crazed to summit, decided to attempt a different way up (no spikes at all) poles in hand. In return the mountain retaliated sending him down a good 50-75'. With the snow being a 4-6’ deep, Jam clung on to the top of a spruce tree to stop him from going over the edge. Bizz helped him get back to the trail, and tried to coax him to let this one go. We made a safe ascent back to the AMC hut where some of the group changed into drier clothes. On the way back down the steep incline made it almost impossible to walk down without spikes on forcing us to "booty slide", leaving us battered and bruised. We made it back to the highway around 1 O’clock, and got ready to head home. We were all a bit discouraged about not summiting but felt confident that we made the right call. We all lived and still hiked a solid 8 miles. The Mountains gotta win sometimes a guess…
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:5240 ft / 1597 m
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Snow on Ground, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:5240 ft / 1597 m
    Start Trailhead:0 ft / 0 m
Descent Statistics

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