Sunday, July 22, 2012

Panting Panther and Ouchy Couchy

 Top of Couchsachraga
 View off of Panther
 Santanoni Lean-to
Top of Panther

Yesterday we hiked Couchsachraga and Panther. We had also hoped to grab Santanoni but sometimes things just don't work out. We started at 5:30 on Saturday morning with full packs in hopes of grabbing a campsite to pitch a tent. We headed up the trail with Biji from a forum my Dad is apart of. The road was about 1.5 miles I would say and then another 3.5 miles up the trail to the campsite. Once you hit the trail we were on a steady upwards climb but it wasn't all that bad. We past the start of the herd path up to Time Square and kept going for about .3 miles to the lean-to. All the legal and illegal campsites around there were occupied by tents already so we settled for the lean-to. We dropped our packs turned around and headed for the herd path. The beginning of the herd path around Bradley Pond was confusing we searched for the path for about a half hour before finally finding it. The key is when you see the cairn by the pond go straight and around to the left right over the beaver dam. We continued up a very rugged herd path along Panther Brook. Once we reached Harold Square we made a right onto Panther. The climb to Panther was very short and not to hard. Once you got to the top there were great views. We had our lunch and headed down over to Couchy. It took about 2 hours to get over there. It was rugged, muddy, slick, and steep in some spots. The bog in the col between the ridge and Couchy was passable but I suspect if it hadn't been as dry as it had been it would've been worse. It took about an hour and 45 minutes to get back to the ridge where we decided it was too much to go onto Santanoni. Down we went again on the rugged Panther Brook herd path. We got back to the lean-to about 8. It was a long long day and we were exhausted. After the trip I actually find that I like lean-to's better than sleeping in a tent. In the morning we packed up and left around 8 and headed down back to the car. We ended our trip at 10:40 with sights set on Santanoni in the fall.
-ADK Gurl

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