I'm sure some of the worst plans are conceived over beers with friends at the local watering hole. But there we were in the pub at Team Granite's home base, Highland Mountain Bike Park. It was post-ride at Wednesduro, and we were trying to figure out which peak to tackle next as part of Projectnortheast's #bikethewhites
series. Then someone said it, "Why don't we ride the biggest and baddest mountain in the east?" All ears perked up as if we had all had it on our minds recently. Mind you, we have tackled many a local summit with our bikes on our backs, but this one, this one was different. "The home of the world's worst weather." Mt. Washington.
The seed was planted, legal trails were examined, elevation profiles were studied, and the higher summits' forecast was carefully looked over. The day and the route were picked. The weather forecast would hold true through the next week for beautiful clear skies and no wind; a very rare occurrence.
Before venturing out into any backcountry ride in the White Mountain National Forest I always ensure that whatever we are trying to do is 100% legal. While I've been met with some criticism online, all of our on trail encounters have been nothing but positive. Most other trail users will ask questions/make comments like "Bikes? Here? Well, that's a first!" or "Are you going all the way to the top?" From people cheering us on as we respectfully descend by, seemingly surprised to see us again, to the WMNF ranger asking to take our picture at the top of Tuckerman's Ravine. I'm still kicking myself for not asking to take a selfie with her.
With frequent breaks to enjoy the scenery in pristine mountain weather, the hike up the western slope would take us close to 5 hours to reach the summit. After downing more calories at the summit than planned, we started our descent. At nearly 4 o'clock we wanted to ride a loop around the mountain, but our older wiser selves would make the right decision to turn back and leave some on the table for another day. The descent would prove to be a challenging technical game of pinball off rocks of every different size and shape and slick-as-snot, off-camber log waterbars. Being a Thursday, though the only souls we ran into during our descent were a local photographer and friend we knew heading up for sunset photos. We had the whole trail to ourselves, another rarity in the area. Left: The terrain is big and hard especially with a bike on your back Right: Riding along tuckermans ravine towards lions head
As we descended down the light was fading and by the time we reached our vehicles it was almost pitch black. Beers were enjoyed as we sat on the asphalt in a circle reminiscing about what we had just accomplished. A small contingent of Team Granite just tackled the biggest peak in the east. @Projectnortheast
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