Date: November 11, 2014
Distance: 2.41 miles roundtrip
Elevation Gain: 489 feet
Our Hiking Time: 2 hours, 23 minutes round trip
Trail Blaze: Yellow Rectangles
When I resigned from my inner-city high school teaching job in June, I also left behind my position as advisor to the Outdoor Adventures Club. It was not easy for me, but I was elated when Kendra told me she was eager to take the reins and applied for the job. She was officially hired last week – so naturally we had our first hike this past Tuesday!
When Kendra asked me for ideas for the first trip, I suggested hiking West Rattlesnake Mountain in Holderness, NH. The club has done this hike before, but what keeps us coming back is the incredible bang for the buck – an easy one-mile hike up the Old Bridle Path Trail leads to incredible views of Squam Lake below.
On last year’s hike, I took Addie, who was three at the time, and Kate, who was just shy of eight weeks old. Kendra stayed home with Evan. This year, Kendra organized the entire trip and rode on the bus with the students and Addie, while I drove up with the twins. It was kind of awesome – no handing out gear or counting and recounting to make sure we had everyone. Although I did miss sleeping on the bus… there’s nothing like a post-hike nap on the ride home.
We met the bus at the parking lot. I arrived early so I could get the twins ready to go. There’s a bit of prep work when we take them hiking – pre-hike diaper changes, pulling on fleece jackets and hats, making sure the pack is loaded with extra diapers, clothes, sippy cups, and snacks. The weather was unseasonably warm for November – almost 50 degrees. I ended up hiking in shorts and a t-shirt!
Because we had 48 students ready to hike, we split into several smaller groups and staggered our start times as we headed up the trail. I carried Evan up, and Addie hiked with me, while Kendra carried Kate and led a different group. Addie and I had a blast – she found lots of “fairy homes,” and practically skipped up the trail.
Of course, as soon as we hit the summit, she ditched us and had lunch with the kids. I think she was enticed by their pumpkin spice oreos – and I can’t really blame her. They were pretty amazing.
Addie hung with the high school kids until Kendra’s group made it up the trail. As soon as she realized her friend Eva was in that group, she came running over to us and they set off to explore the summit. Meanwhile, Evan and Kate had a blast playing in – and eating – the rocks and dirt.
After about 30 minutes of eating and enjoying the view, we snapped a group picture and headed back down the trail. Addie, Kate and I hiked with Eva and her mom Nan (our friend and fellow teacher). It was awesome to catch up – I miss seeing my old work friends every day.
By the time we got to the parking lot, the kids were just loading onto the bus. Never one to miss an opportunity to ride on a school bus with the big kids, Addie went with Kendra and I drove home to the sound of snoring twins.
Directions to the trailhead:
GPS Coordinates: 43.790428,-71.549076
From I-93N: Take exit 24 for US-3/NH-25 towardAshland/Holderness. Turn right onto NH-25 E/US-3 S/Daniel Webster Hwy/Main St. Continue to follow NH-25 E/
From I-93S: Take exit 25 toward Plymouth State University/