View of the Great Range from Phelps
Top of Phelps
Top of Tabletop
Indian Falls right above the herd path for Tabletop
Over Columbus Day weekend we hiked Tabletop and Phelps. It was another camping trip and it was a blast.....and very busy. Tabletop is usually very quiet people say but when we were there it was quite busy. We started at the ADK Loj and had to cross Marcy Brook. Usually stream crossings are not too bad but I always get nervous crossing streams because I'm afraid of slipping and falling. Marcy Brook was especially bad because it was not an easy crossing, we had to cross the brook once walk across and island then cross the other part, we have full packs, and I don't have long legs. We camped a mile from Marcy Brook at the Phelps Campsite. There were 13 tents including ours. We have never had to share a campsite with anyone so it was a new experience. When we got to the start of the Tabletop herd path we decided to finish climbing the hill we were on so we would be able to see Indian Falls. When we did Marcy we weren't sure how far Indian Falls were from the trail so we didn't stop for the views. Big mistake. It is only about 10 yards from the trail and it is beautiful. When we got back down to the start of Tabletop it was very muddy. Then it started to get steep. The steeps didn't last long because it was only half a mile to the top from the start of the trail. We had lunch on Tabletop then went back down to the start of the trail to Phelps. Phelps was just plain old steep. We had to gain 1,300 feet in one mile and we were tired. Also my Dad didn't bring the water sterilizer so we were VERY thirsty and were saving our water that we had. The top of Phelps was pretty cool. There were tons of little paths around the summit and it had a great view of the whole Great Range. When we got to the campsite we grabbed our water sterilizer and bushed whacked a way to Phelps Brook down from the campsite. Sadly our sterilizer was not working so we could only make up one liter of water. That was enough for us to share for the moment but not enough for us to drink from, cook with and wash our dishes with. When we got back to the campsite we boiled water so it would be sterilized and then made dinner. The hike out was longer than I thought. I thought we would be out around 10:30 but we made it out around 11:30. Even though it was only three miles we were tired and we had heavy packs.