Justo8484 and I headed up to Tuckermans on Friday night, it was kind of last minute and I think we decided we were going for it on Wednesday night or Thursday morning as the weather looked a bit iffy. We left my place around 3 and got to Gorham NH around 1130. That included a stop in Northampton Mass for some beer and food at Progression brewing. The original plan was to camp but it was raining pretty good most of the day so I decided to book a cheap hotel room. We woke up around 7, had some breakfast and drove about 5 miles down the road to Pinkham Notch visitors center. The lot was not overly full and we were able to park in one of the closest lots. We got all of our gear together and started towards the visitors center, there is a pack scale at the visitors center so we took a quick stop there out of curiosity. Justo's pack weighed in at 57 lbs, and mine was around 44 lbs. Since Im a nice guy and knew my pack would be lighter I threw in a few extra beers just to make sure we would not run out.
The start of the hike was quite warm, Justo decided to start in hiking boots and I went for the ski boot option since my touring boots have a full rubber sole, hence why my pack was quite a bit lighter. It was very foggy, steamy and muddy and about a half mile in we made it to snow and that made the hiking quite a bit easier. We hiked to the second bridge on the Tuckermans trail and the put the skins on and skinned from there to Hojos cabin. We took a quick break at Hojos to put on actual ski pants and get ready for the variable weather we would hit in the bowl. Skis went back on our packs and we hiked from Hojos to the bottom of the bowl. Took a quick look around while having a snack and a beer and decided we were going to hit Right Gully for our first run.
The boot pack up Right was pretty uneventful, we took our time and got stuck behind a few people that left us pass as we cough up to them. We decided to put our skis on in a little different area than most of the people up there were, and I set a little boot pack at the top to get to where we wanted to go. A lot of people were behind us so I was kind of in a hurry to get my skis on and get moving before the hoards of people got up to the top as well. I pretty quickly jumped into my skis and started on my way down. I quickly realized that I never took my boots out of walk mode on my second turn and ended up doing a bit of yoga mid run and lost a ski, luckily someone stopped it with their snowboard or it would have been long gone and most likely hit someone at the bottom of the bowl or in lunch rocks. Got my ski back on and made it the rest of the way down, it was a good corn harvest snow and the fog kept it quite soft.
Another beer and a snack and we started up Left Gully, at the top we decided we were pretty cooked and didn't really want to do the boot pack a third time so we headed over to HIllmans Highway which leads back to Hojos cabin. From the top of the boot pack it is a rock scramble over to the top of Hillmans, luckily we were able to keep another group in our sights on the way over and it even happened that they were going to the same place. Threw the skis on again, put my boots in ski mode and we started skiing, this was by far the run of the day. By this point the sun had burned off a lot of the fog and it was amazing corn snow and a long steep sustained run to the bottom.
Another beer and some more food and we started to make our way out on the Sherburne trail, we could ski about half way down, then we had to jump over on to the Tuckermans trail and hike out from there. Overall it was about a 7 hour day, 7.5 miles and about 4k in vert. Such a great day and I cant wait to do it again. Back at the truck we had more beer, then got on the road towards Killington to meet up with Jeff on Sunday. Amazing weekend and a great end to the season.