When I hiked Hale a few weeks back I took notice of how you could bike most of the trail between Zealand Hut and the road. I though it would make a fun trip to bike back up to the hut and then hike to Zealand Mountain. I spread the word amongst a few of my friends, and came up with a couple other interested parties. My friend Eric, who I ski with a lot in the winter (hes the very good skier in my videos), and Tony, a younger kid that had come with me to hike the osceolas last year, and has been becoming more outdoorsy ever since.
We had to hike our bikes only about 1/2 of a mile of the 2.3 miles to the hut. We left our bikes at the bottom of the falls area, and headed straight up the actual falls to the jct of the Twinway Trail.
A Short clip of Tony biking:
Climbing the Falls to by pass the Hut. (I was in a very anti-AMC Mood and still am)
Twinway Trail up to Zealand:
Twinway between the falls and the ridge was steeper than the Topo map made it look, and this is the first time I’ve been with fit people that pushed me on steeps since my injury.
I was definetley feeling it, and feeling less like a machine than i did before the injury. I’ve got to get back to where I was. Once on the ridge I felt better, and it was about another 1/2 mile to the summit. There is a short spur trail to the summit from twinway.
From the summit there is no view, but about a 1/2 mile before the summit on the ridge there is a little cliff with a nice view. On the way back there was a Cow Moose just about 10 feet off of the side of the trail near the cliff that we didn’t notice until she scurried off through the Bushes. Eric was the only one who got a good look at her, and we didn’t get any pics. We tried to follow her but she elluded us. It started to rain while we were still up on the ridge, and a few bolts of lightning struck, but it never got too scary. The hike back down to the falls was very slick, it seems that the higher than usual humidity and rainfall we’ve been getting this year is making the moss, and algae on the rocks grow more than usual making them very green and very slippery.
After getting back to our bikes we ran into a ranger who we greeted, and he said nothing about our bikes. he seemed like he was amused to see us on bikes. Which was a relief because I wasn’t sure of the legallity of the bikes. We had to walk the bikes much less on the way down, and we made a special effort to be careful and courteous to all hikers giving them full right of way. Thats why I got pretty annoyed with an AMC yahoo that was carrying stuff up to the hut that tried to make an issue of us having bikes. I reminded him that despite what he thought, he didn’t have any authority, and that in fact about a 1/2 mile behind us was a ranger that did have authority and he seemed fine with us being on bikes. The ride down was fun there were some great sections that were technically difficult. When we got back to the car the GPS odometer read exactly 11 miles round trip.