Sam, Max and I went up to New Hampshire and climbed Mount Osceola and East Osceola today; great fun, good company.
I set out at about 8:15a and grabbed Max at about 8:30a. From Max's, we proceeded into the city and picked Sam up from Chi Phi at 9:00a. From here we made the arduous trek deep into New Hampshire, grabbed some food and supplies in Waterville Valley. We then proceeded onwards and got to the parking area at about 12:30p. From the parking area, we began our storming of the Osceolas. A majority of the early part of Osceola is rather rocky and somewhat steep. Eventually, the rocky bits calm down a little and then it's just steep. Since we were storming the mountain--not too actively, just because we're all in our early twenties and in decent shape--we made really good time and weren't too concerned with the steepness or the rockiness (it's more fun that way). Up at the top of Osceola are two old fire tower foundations, one at the top of Osceola's big cliff at the summit thing and one a little earlier. At the earlier fire tower foundation there is a side path to the west that leads to a great outlook to the Northwest. After taking a diversion to the aforementioned outlook we made our way to Osceola's big cliff at the summit thing, which happens to be a big cliff at the summit. The big cliff is pretty spectacular, especially if you've got a mild fear of heights, and allows for a great view off to the Northeast and East. Since we'd already planned to hit up East Osceola before stopping for the sandwichs that we'd purchased in Waterville Valley, we only stopped for a short while. After Osceola summit, there is a steep and rocky descent for a bit, which is then followed by a really steep, rock descent for another little bit. It then proceeds to smooth out and start to rise to East Osceola summit. East Osceola summit, is rather unimpressive and mostly covered in trees. It still being rather early, we decided to head back to Osceola summit before eating. The really steep, rock descent became a really steep, rock ascent in reverse and was quite a lot of fun. Having made our way back to Osceola summit, we ate, sat around for a while and then proceeded down. Incidentally, pickles taste really good when you're electrolyte depleted from exerting yourself. We made it back to the car at 5:00p, giving us a 4:30 hike time in comparison with the AMC guidebook estimate of 6:40, which I found quite impressive. I was still feeling pretty good about myself when we got back to the car, as though I could have kept going for a bit longer. We then proceeded back to I93 and headed south. We, of course, stopped at the Burger King in Ashland, NH, as is customary for hiking in the White Mountains (as far as I'm concerned), for dinner. A nice greasy, salty burger with salty fries is like ambrosia when you've been exerting yourself strenuously for a large part of the day. It was at the Burger King that I realized I was quite fatigued, apparently going all fast like is tiring and it just had a bit of a lag so as not to let me feel it while hiking. From there we returned Sam to Chi Phi and I returned Max to his home. Osceola's got some nice views and the path between it and East Osceola is pretty fun.
Well, that's four four-thousand-footers down and forty-four to go.