Ascent of Mount Isolation on 2014-08-30

Climber: Spencer Corcoran

Date:Saturday, August 30, 2014
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Mount Isolation
    Location:USA-New Hampshire
    Elevation:4003 ft / 1220 m

Ascent Trip Report

What a great weather day to bag #46 (and #3 for Ray)!

My partner-in-crime, Ray, and I set out on the Rocky Branch Trail at 8:15 AM. It had a gentle grade to start, and coincided with a ski trail in the early going, eventually diverging left at a fork. From here to just before the height-of-land, we had to hike about two miles up steady, switchback-ey terrain, which kicked our butts (up and down) when combined with the heat and humidity. We soon left the switchbacks and walked on an pleasant, almost flat section, then we entered the Presidential Range-Dry River Wilderness. After that, the trail climbed to the height-of-land, then descended 350 vertical feet over wet and mucky terrain to the Isolation Trail junction at the Rocky Branch.

From here, it was a mellow 2.6 miles to the Davis Path. There were five brook crossings total, including the one at the end of Rocky Branch, but they were all rock-hoppable. After the final crossing, the Isolation Trail climbed into the high woods, which was nice at times but riddled with blowdowns near the junction. Soon, we reached that junction, and it was an easy 0.9 mile to the summit.

The Davis Path was all PUD from there to the Isolation spur path, but the ridge walking was incredibly nice. After a moderate section, we got to the summit spur path, which made a short but very steep climb to the open summit. Arrival time: 12:15 PM.

We spent an hour on the top taking in the view, snacking, and chatting with fellow hikers and their canine friends. Ray was very surprised at how many people's 4K counts were in the 40s, and I told him that a lot of people are closing in, from what I read on hiking forums. After our long break and some photo ops, we went back down the way we came.

Only West Bond and Wildcat D left on my list!
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3803 ft / 1158 m
    Extra Gain:500 ft / 152 m
    Round-Trip Distance:14.5 mi / 23.3 km
    Route:Rocky Branch, Isolation, Davis Path, summit spur t
    Trailhead:Rocky Branch TH  1200 ft / 365 m
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Time:4 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Time:3 Hours 15 Minutes

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