Sunday, April 22, 2012

Pleasant Mountain April 14

The man on the top of the mountain did not fall there. ~ Chinese Proverb

After my first hike up Pleasant Mt via the Fire Warden's Trail, the following Saturday I decided to try the it again, this time on the Southwest Ridge Trail.  This proved to be an absolutely lovely trail.  After an initial short walk through woods, this trail follows a ridge which allows for a lot of great views while hiking.  Additionally, since there were no leaves out yet the views were beautiful for almost the entire hike along the ridge.

About half way up the Mountain the trail changed to an incredibly interesting environment of stone, boulders and rock face that was not only beautiful but also created the image in my mind of wandering through the the ruins of some ancient city.

After 1.7 miles of hiking we arrived at the Southwest Summit.

Once again, the views were beautiful.

From there we hiked an additional 1 mile across to the actual summit of Pleasant Mt.  This part of the hike was an unpleasant and unrewarding trail that was narrow and not easily hiked.  In order to reach the summit, you descend a few hundred feet and then ascend a few hundred feet in order to gain a final total of only 106 ft of elevation from your starting point a mile before.  The final part of this trail involved scrambling up (and then back down later) a rock face.

The Southwest Ridge Trail is a beautiful trail that I will hike again.  However next time I will stop at the Southwest Summit and not bother with the mile of trail that goes over to the actual summit.

The Southwest Ridge Trail is more strenuous than the Fire Warden's Trail but well worth the hike if you are up to it.  It is a very aesthetically pleasing hike.

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