May 30, 2019 my daughter and I headed up the Champney Brook trail to summit Mount Chocoruah. Previously, I have climbed via the Piper trail many times as a child, the last climb being at around age 19. I then climbed via Piper about two years ago with my mom, but she got too tired and we did not submit that day.
I’m 53 years old now and barely remember the summit of Chocoruah, but I do remember that the Piper trail was steep towards the top. Not so with the Champney Brook trail. I found it to be milder overall and quite and easy climb until the summit. We really enjoyed the falls and talking as we went along.
We found the top not very well marked and quite foggy this day. The summit was cold and we had to stop and add layers. It was far more difficult maneuvering the ledges than I remember as a kid. We met a couple close to the summit and they were fearful of the last steep push up to the summit. I knew that I had climbed it many times before but just couldn’t quite remember how to get up the last piece. I decided to lead the way and figure this out and bingo……..not quite as hard as it looked there in the fog! We made it to the summit, took some photos and then ate our PB & Js back down on the lower ledges.
Generally, when you climb these mountains, the reward is an outstanding view. Unfortunately those views are weather dependent and Mother Nature just did not cooperate this day. My daughter had an amazing time however, and we made some memories on this hill.
One lesson we learned today was to pay attention to the trail. We missed an important intersection on the way back down, headed down the Piper trail and then had to climb back up. We also messed up at another juncture and crossed a river in the wrong place and almost became lost. We added quite a few miles to our trip, but overall it was another epic day of hiking and fun.