On Sunday morning, we consulted our maps over coffee before deciding to head to Monadnock State Park in Jaffrey, New Hampshire. It started to rain on our way there, so we stopped at a CVS and bought some ponchos. (We had sadly left left our Shower Attack Sports ponchos, purchased on our trip through Laos during the rainy season in 2008, at home. Those things just scream class.) Our new ponchos seemed to work as magic charms – after we purchased them, the rain stopped!
Our plan was to hike up Mount Monadnock, a 3,165 foot mountain. We had packed in a hurry and weren’t particularly prepared for hiking: I had sneakers but only sundresses, Marc had pants but no sneakers, and neither of us had a backpack. We weren’t terribly concerned; we imagined the hike would be long, but not too difficult.
As it turned out, we completely underestimated the hike. Some parts were really challenging, and there were a number of places that I needed to use my hands to scramble up the rocks. The return climb took us a little over four hours, and we were completely exhausted by the time we reached the bottom. That said, it was amazing! The clouds were really low, and, at one point, we crossed into them. We could see them swirling around us; it was so incredible. There wasn’t much of a view from the top because of the clouds, but there were a few places to rest along the way that afforded nice views. Unfortunately, I didn’t have my cell phone to take pictures. I only tried to carry a bottle of water, and even that got away from me!
We were pretty wiped out after our climb, so we spent the remainder of the evening driving around New Hampshire looking for covered bridges and Vermont looking for waterfalls. Our plan was to stay that evening in Vermont, but we couldn’t find anywhere to stay or anywhere serving food past 9:00 p.m., so we headed back into New Hampshire. We found a room in Lebanon, New Hampshire and stopped for dinner at the Seven Barrels Brewery. The brewery was one of the only things open at that time, but it was so good! Of course, it didn’t hurt that there were $4.00 glasses of wine.
Coming up: We go Vermonting!