I was dragged up to Pittsburg for a week of fishing. YUCK! Well, OK, actually, I was freaking psyched to be going up to the Promised Land for a week of trout fishing, and hitting a bunch of the remote and/or smaller ponds for some good times. I had also planned out a number of possible hikes to check out some unclimbed peaks, because Pittsburg in general offers some of the finest whacking in the state. Throw in beer and some shooting (not together!) and you've got quite a week. And quite a week it was.
We stayed at Eagle's Nest thanks to a friend's friend owning the place. Awesome cabin. Nice big porch to shoot the bull, lots of bedspace, and a fully stocked kitchen. I had mixed feelings about the phone, TV and internet, but I utilized a couple of those myself. We got in Saturday, and were up early to hit Third Lake. Fish were biting, but they weren't hooking for me. That afternoon, I decided to head up Perry Stream Road and scope out the trail to Lower Perry Pond, a long walk in, but also close to Perry Ponds Peak, a NH200 peak. Man, was it nice having a short drive!
On Perry Stream Road, I caught a deer and her young one in a field. This doe was the largest I've ever personally seen, and she watched me, bolted, looked back and made sure the offspring was getting out of harm's way.
I don't drive terribly slow on logging roads when conditions warrant, and they warranted movement down low. Coming across a Vermont vehicle put-putting along made me groan. Was the guy seriously going to leave me stuck behind him for miles and miles? Finally, they pulled over, apparently confused trying to find a camp. Sheesh. I had my son-in-law's truck for this trip, though I had been most of the way up Perry Stream Road in the Elantra without an issue at all. Well, apparently the rains this year had done a number. The road got rougher. And rougher. This was to be no speedy trip. Big washouts, culverts sticking way up, I almost certainly (though I've done crazier things...) would've turned around in the car. And on this bouncefest, what comes along but 3 cars (not trucks) from Mass. One passenger looked either scared to death or pissed to the hilt. What the hell were they doing this far up? Again camps were probably the answer. I waved, no response. Figures. Have a lovely trip.
A bit before Perry Ponds road, I got a surprise. Tree down across the road. I brought my chainsaw, mainly for fear of a tree coming down on the way back, which is something I should be doing on any remote adventure. Now I was glad to have it to avoid backing up to find a place to park and add some more walking. A quick cut and drag, and back on my way.
Perry Stream Road was also interesting. Washed out and steeper, but I made it to the parking lot before the gate to find a nice little kiosk.
The road low was a muddy mess, and imagining carrying a float tube up, I knew I wasn't dragging the other guys up here. It'd take a determined soul to do this, especially early in the morning. There were some steepish spots as well. Not that I wouldn't drag my tube. Sure I will someday. Gimme a challenge! I spotted a possible trail to Wright Pond, but opted not to follow it. Near the pond, a couple spots of humor appeared.
Lower Perry Pond, though small and apparently shallow, did look inviting.
There was a rough trail following the shore which I gladly followed. Once I neared the far shore, it was apparent why it was there. I had forgot there's a single cabin on this pond. Yes, yes I was jealous.
No trail further, I looked towards the ridge and found cliffs. The map showed going north would provide no easy or fast way to gain it. Ummm, no. I'd have to backtrack. At a slope friendly place, I dived in, having a struggle to cross a brook heading to the pond. Good grief these woods are not pleasant. I've only had one bad experience in Pittsburg, and it was S. Deer Mtn. Wait a minute, S. Deer is on the same ridge, south of here. It's this cursed ridge!
I gained the ridge, finding mixed woods. I'd find a good stretch, it'd be short and back to moving slower due to blowdowns, thicker woods, whippy woods, blah. Upper Perry Pond was a mildly interesting diversion.
The rest of the way was pretty much the same. I found the summit (it's easy, really, just keep going up), and finally got the first bugs of the day, black flies, but even then they weren't that annoying. OK, let's get out. I planned a slightly more direct route out, going on the east side or Upper Perry Pond, and hoping for better woods, but I kept getting sucked to the right and still ended up more or less around the area I had come up. At least I missed the brook before I got back to the camp trail. Nondescript trip down, and the road wasn't so nerve racking on the way out (never is, is it). I couldn't wait to get to the good section as the mile markers slowly ticked away. Filled the guys in over a few cold ones.
The rest of the trip? Well, zeroed on Round , Boundary and Moose Ponds the next three days. Hits galore, I just couldn't set the hook for some damned reason, which I haven't had an issue with this rod before. Said screw it, I'll go to the 3 weight rod for yucks, tied on an emerging dragonfly versus the streamers and other goodies I had been trying. Also decided on floating line versus sinking tip, and bingo, that did the trick, much to my surprise. Sadly, a nice round 13” brookie got away from me while I was trying to untangle it. Went back to Third Lake the next day with similar success, including a nice Rainbow. Most delicious fish I ever had. Then the hammer came down, my best bud blew his brake lines on the way to East Inlet that afternoon, and he was not a happy camper after breaking a number of his gear on top of that. I decided to keep him company after guiding everyone else up to the inlet, and the next day stayed with him until his truck was fixed. We left the next day. While he wasn't happy with the fishing there (why, I'm still not sure, except for the breakage), I can't wait to go visiting and revisiting more of these great waters and hopefully get some more hiking in. Good times!