#37 Mt. Hale 4054 ft.
Trails: Hale Brook Trail -> Lend a Hand Trail -> Zealand Falls Trail
Total Miles: 8.7 Miles
Elevation: 2,300 ft.
A day hike with a time crunch. Brendan was up again for the weekend and had a train to catch so we could only get one peak done. We decided to do Mt. Hale since we missed it when we did our Zealand/Bond overnight. And if we were going slow we could just head back down, or if we had time we could (and did) the loop over to Zealand falls.
This trail was actually a nice easy climb up to the top. We went through beautiful woods. The top was a completed wooded summit. There were no views. There was a random rock pile and what looked like an old foundation. We stayed up and used the rock pile as a wind break for our first snack break of the day.
Since we were decently ahead of schedule we went on to do the loop to Zealand Pond. This brought us down the other side of the mountain and towards Zealand Falls Hut. Unfortunately as we were hiking a trail running came up behind us and passed through. Worse thing was that Deakin was up ahead and was terrified of this half naked trail runner surprising him. Deak took off down the trail and it took us a good 10 minutes to find him, then another 10 minutes for me to calm him down enough to put him back on the leash. That’s what I get for thinking I have a real dog, when in reality I have a little boy dog. Idiot.
The rest of the way to Zealand falls and the hut was uneventful after that. The hut was a nice place to take another snack break and get our energy back for the last few miles.
It was another great day on the trail. After Zealand falls hut we actually passed an older woman who was very nice and we chatted about peak bagging. She said it took her 18 years to get all 48 done. I told my mom later down the trail that now we have a time goal to do them all. 18 years? I think we can beat that!