Franconia Notch – Cannon Mountain

I had a lovely drive up. It just kept getting prettier and prettier. New York was nice but the best part was Route 7 over the mountain into Vermont. The border is right at the top and it opens up into a giant sweeping valley. The valley was bright red and orange with low clouds hanging out on the ridgeline and the perfect dramatic light. It looks like a giant spilled a bag of Skittles. I regret not stopping for a photo.

I wish it was a little brighter when I arrived. Google took me in from the north side of Franconia notch and this area is just gorgeous. There’s bright yellow trees and then the cliffs get steep enough that they turn into rock face. It was dark by the time I set up my hammock.

Saturday morning saw a hike up Cannon Mountain via the Cannon-Lonesome Loop. This hike really humbled me because I learned the hard way New Hampshire does not do switchbacks on the trail. This trail ended up with probably around 1000 feet of almost rock scramble. It didn’t help that I made a wrong turn and got to do some extra scrambling. Cannon Mountain was my first and only 4000 footer in New Hampshire.

Prior to the steep sections is Lonesome Lake. It is a lovely marshy lake with an AMC mountain hut. Some of my favorite photos of the area was taken on the way down after the fog and clouds cleared out. I hiked to the top of that mountain.

ISO 100 | f/8 | 1/200 | 16mmISO 100 | f/8 | 1/200 | 16mm

ISO 100 | f/8 | 1/200 | 16mm

I didn’t end up with the great stunning views the trail guide promised – the mountain top was in a cloud. That was disappointing, but I am really glad I did this hike first and didn’t start with the Franconia Ridge Trail. I ended up having a toe rub together and couldn’t walk too much on Sunday.

ISO 400 | f/8 | 1/400 | 35mmISO 400 | f/8 | 1/400 | 35mm

ISO 400 | f/8 | 1/400 | 35mm

After I hiked back down I was absolutely gassed. The hike down was almost as difficult and I couldn’t have done it without the trekking poles I borrowed. I definitely overpacked gear. I didn’t need my fleece camera filters.

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