Mt. Moosilauke via the Carriage Road

1.0 Overview

Mt Moosilauke (4802) is the closest and most accessible of the great 4000 footers of the region. The Carriage Road provides a classic ski route and a challenging ascent whether on skis or showshoes. This outing will take us from the Carriage Road trailhead at Breezy Point northward out of the Baker River Valley up onto the ridge leading to South Peak. From there, if the weather cooperates, we will continue on above treeline to the summit. The descent promises great backountry skiing, boarding, or snowshoeing.

2.0 Concept

2.1 Description

This outing is over wild, snowy terrain and requires snowshoes or skis for the ascent. Snowboards may be used for the descent of the upper portion of the trail.

We will begin at the Carriage Road trailhead at Breezy Point. From there the trail leads northward climbing out of the Baker River valley and onto the ridge leading to the South Peak. The trail beyond the South Peak is in alpine terrain, although sheltered by scrub spruces. About a quarter mile beyond the South Peak, the trail emerges completely above treeline and ascends to the summit. We will climb as high as weather permits.

The descent is one of the great classic backcountry ski routes of New England and requires at least intermediate-level skiing (or boarding) skills. Telemark skis and technique are useful, but many skiers use cross country, randonnee, or alpine equipment.

Total distance is 10 miles. Total time is about 8 hours.

Since this will be a fairly long day, we will start early. Sadly, there is no MacDonalds enroute....

2.2 Schedule of Events

Sun 24Mar02:
0700 -- Meet at OHP. Be on time!
0715 -- Roll
0830 -- Arrive Breezy Point (trailhead)
0845 -- Start Carriage Road
1200 -- Arrive South Summit. Decide whether to continue above treeline.
1300 -- Begin descent. Lunch probably about end of snowmobile trail (split rock).
1600 -- Arrive Breezy Point.
1615 -- Roll.
1730 -- Arrive Hanover.

2.3 Expected Conditions and Difficulty

The Carriage Road is a strenuous and challenging route, and continues above treeline. Ice axe and crampons are not required above treeline, although a climber without ski poles may find an ice axe useful in the wind. No technical climbing is involved, but intermdiate level skiing or boarding skills are necessary on the descent. Participants without these skills will be quite comfortable on showshoes or descending using skins.

Since we will be above treeline part of the trip, it is important to be prepared for severe weather, including the possibility (certainty, really) of wind, cold, and snow.

2.4 Special Requirements

This outing is open only to scouts and leaders with winter alpine experience.

3.0 Administration and Logistics

3.1 Announcement Date: 1 Feb 02

3.2 Roster Closing Date: 21 Mar 02

3.3 Costs

  • We may stop for dinner enroute.
  • WMNF day use passes are $3 per vehicle.

    3.4 Equipment

    3.4.1 Individual Equipment

  • Bring standard gear for above treeline winter climbing. See the equipment list for more information. Full wind gear including balaclava, face mask, wind pants, mitten shells, and parka are required.
  • Snowshoes or skis (with skins) are required.
  • Backup warm layer is required.
  • Lunch.

    3.4.2 Patrol Equipment


    3.4.3 Troop Equipment

  • Maps: Mt Kineo (7.5), Mt. Moosilauke (7.5)
  • First Aid Kit
  • Mountaineering emergency gear

    3.5 Transportation Plan

    Drop-off Point: Old Hospital Parking Lot (OHP)
    Drop-off Time: 7:00 AM
    Pickup Point: Scouts will be delivered home, unless otherwise notified
    Pickup Time: approx 6:00 PM

    4.0 Leadership

    4.1 Planning Committee

  • Russell

    4.2 Adult Leaders

  • SMIC: Yorke Brown
  • Dan Nelson
  • Bill Scavone

    Approved GCH 23Mar02

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