Salty's Black Crescent Mtn north peak Trip Reports


Hiking Dates


Date Climbed: 11/12/2011

Distance: 6.4 miles

Low Elevation: 1824 feet
High Elevation: 3278 feet
Elevation Gain: 1657 feet
Elevation Loss: 1657 feet

Start Location: Bog Dam Loop Rd.
Finish Location: Bog Dam Loop Rd.
Route: Logging road to clearing, whack to logging road, up logging clearings to N. Black Crescent. Along ridge to S. Black Crescent, back on ridge cutting around N. peak, down logging road, whack to old road to Bog Dam Loop Rd,, north on road

Weather: Cold, overcast
Companions: NewHampshire


With Joe and Greg off doing something else, it was time for Brian and I to do peaks they had already done, and the Black Crescents sounded like a fine choice. Heavily logged on the north side, good roads and views promised for an easy and pleasant approach. Sort of. I punched in the coordinates of the road we were to start from and my GPS (nicknamed The Bitch) said we could get there via Ingersol Road. Hmmm, that would eliminate going all the way around through Berlin, but I'd never heard of anyone doing this approach. We discussed, and decided to go for it. No guts, no gifts (there ain't no glory in this).

We arrived at the 115/2 junction and made the turn onto the road. It was a good dirt road to begin with, and getting a little rougher as the first couple of miles ticked off. Unfortunately, the snow started picking up on the road, as did the drainage ditches, so my anxiety level started picking up, especially when I had to slow way down for the ditches, and then was slipping trying to get up a hill after one of them. Ugh. We made it in to the Pond of Safety trail, where the road going forward had deep flooded ruts. No way I was risking getting stuck, and it probably only got worse. Looking back, it's probably just as well, it'd be my luck that there would be a gate on Bog Dam Loop road preventing people from going this way, ha ha.

Soooo, back down the road, and through Berlin, where the Bitch took me up to another interesting route, dead ending at a gate, with what suspiciously looked like a Bayroot road number sign. Dammit! Up to York Pond Road and finally to Bog Dam Loop where we wanted to be. We met a hunter there and had a pleasant chat, informing us his buddies were on the opposite side of the road where we were going. The road was a bit mucky, but pleasant, and we came to a field giving early views of the Weeks range.

We came to the next field, and my memory told me the road continued from the right side of it. We saw a trace of a road, which turned into lots of young growth. In reality, the road was on the left side of the field. Having enough of this, we turned left into sapling woods, which nicely turned into wide open woods after a short bit. This went on for a while as we headed up towards another logging road. I could see the far of logging where we were supposed to be off to my left. I think we took the better choice.

After what seemed to be too long, we hit the road, and were a ways off to the right of the ridge I wanted to take up, which also had a road nearly to the top of the north summit. But Brian spied a clear cut to the right, and so I went with the flow and off we went. This worked out pretty well.

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That flow thing works well, don't it? It was a bit steep, but the views got better as we got to the ridge, including some goodies up north despite the clouds.

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The clear cut lasted up to the ridge top, and we came to the road I had wanted to come up, which looked like a decent enough way, too. Now we had views east.

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Sadly, I could see the flipping turbines up on Kelsey now, too. Argh. We could see higher ground in the woods, and after a very short trip, found the summit, in wide open woods.

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Well, that was certainly nice. Now to wait for the other shoe to drop. We headed off to the south peak once I got my bearing from the map (90 degrees off of where I thought it would be), and I got a little nervous at seeing a lot of fir branches, but every time we came up to it, it was easily skirted. It was a fast, and open walk over to the summit, complete with National Forest boundary markers and an old can of paint nearby.

We decided to skip climbing back up the north summit despite the good woods, and slabbed around to the west, trying not to drop too far, which would take us a bit away from the clear cuts. This was not the brightest decision, as the woods got a bit thicker, and full of blowdowns on the steep slope. Sigh. We picked our way through it, having to make up elevation from time to time. After some time, we popped out on a cut heading down, then found the road heading back to where we were but opted for a shortest route to Bog Dam Loop Road. The woods were great, and other than avoiding brook beds, had an easy time of it. We found a woods road leading in the right direction, which took us to the road, coming out 1 mile from the car. We could see another vehicle by ours, and then I notices leaves covering my car. It was Greg. We chatted it up, a Forest Service officer stopped and talked for a while, and then we called it a very, very good day.