4000 Footer Club

Mt Tecumseh
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Elevation:    4003 Feet
Summited:   October 6, 2011
Distance:     5.0 Miles
Difficulty:     Moderate
Views:          Good
Route:          Mount Tecumseh Trail → Tecumseh Summit → Mount Tecumseh Trail

Today we started off with a couple of new hikers, welcoming a wife and friend of one of the croo. I was interested in seeing how hiking with them would turn out. Since there would be five of us instead of four, we decided to take two cars. This gave me time to converse with my friend one on one as our car was just the two of us. Time was flying by until I spiced things up and silence came upon the vehicle for the next 30 minutes, but before we knew it the exit for Waterville Valley was approaching. Not being a skier, I was surprised at how quickly we got there. Seeing that the hill was still bare, the road and parking lot were vacant of people. This was the latest Iíve ever hiked, so I prepared for extreme cold even though the weather at the base was in the 60ís. I also had a surprise in store for the group for when we reached the summit. It was a beautiful morning and the colors of fall were all around us. The trail started from the top of the parking lot. An immediate creek crossing is followed by hiking along Tecumseh Brook for a quarter mile or so before crossing it. The next mile or so was spent hiking along red maple leaves that totally covered the ground. At 1.1 miles the trail descends and crosses the Tecumseh Brook for the second time and so begins over a mile of crazy rock stairs. Shortly after the stairs begin a short trail goes off to the left leading to one of the ski trails where there is a fantastic view of the ski valley below. I suggest resting here as the next mile will include climbing rock stairs that donít stop until youíre almost at the summit. At 2.2 miles the Sosman trail enters from the left. I think it was the old route to the summit before they relocated it order to stay off the ski trails. Shortly after the trails merge, they split circumnavigating the summit of Tecumseh. Bear right to stay on the Tecumseh Trail. The summit is about a quarter mile ahead on the left. The wind was much stronger here, so we decided to descend down to a small opening where we enjoyed lunch. Afterwards, I broke out the surprise, a bottle of Schramsberg Reserve sparkling wine and five plastic flutes for all to enjoy. Youíd be surprised how well it goes with PB&J. The summit views are through the trees of Osceola and Tripyramid. After we all enjoyed a few glasses, we headed down as the wind was quickly turning out sweat into ice water. So down the stairs we went and enjoyed a second stop on the ski slopes and back to the parking lot. All in all, a good hike for an October day.