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Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Heublein Tower/Talcott Mountain, Simsbury - CT Best Hikes


This weekend, the calendar will mark the start of November and the (almost) end of the year. 2020 has been a good year but it's been a hard year. It's been hard to plan, hard to travel, hard to see the people you love. We have embraced seeing people outside and in a socially distanced way from outdoor movie nights to a walk in the woods. Adam and I had plans to stop at a store in West Harford, Connecticut and while we were in the area, Adam wanted to spend some time with a friend. We decided the best way to safely spend some time together was on a hike and when in the West Hartford area in the fall, hike up to Heublein Tower.

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Wittenberg Mountain - Phoenicia - Catskills, New York


Adam and I have been trying to balance our love for the outdoors with our need to finish this damn house. If you are new to KW, we bought a complete fixer-upper in May and have spent the last 6 months taking down walls and rebuilding them back up. In all honesty, it was well-timed with the virus and everyone being homebound but it has also been a strain on my love of the outdoors and long weekends in the mountains.

We made a fair compromise with the trails and our renovation when we decided Saturday would be spent in the Catskills (close enough for a day trip, far enough to be in mountains) and work on the house Sunday (Garage/Basement cleanout day!)  We left early on Saturday morning armed with coffee and packed sandwiches, excited to spend the day in the Catskills, and enjoy a new hike on new trails.  I did some quick research online looking for a medium level hike between 4 and 10 miles with some decent elevation gain (and a view!) and stumbled on Wittenberg and Cornell Mountain.  

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

This not That (Littleton and Route 116) - Fall in New Hampshire


One of my favorite topics on Katie Wanders is a "this not that" sort of series.  It basically takes some of your popular spots and trips and gives you a much better less-crowded alternative. This post is featuring two of these things because when you hit a spot in one of its peak seasons, you need to learn to adjust. 

Monday, October 5, 2020

Mt. Major Hike - Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire


If you need to know anything about me, it's that I am a planner.  I love to plan trips, weekends, hikes, my day, you name it.  Going into the weekend, I had a list of 48ers I wanted to tackle but instead, we altered plans.  The only glitch was Adam also had a list of things he wanted to do.  The new unplanned plan for the weekend was Adam had a day to pick what to do, and I would pick the second day.  The only issue with my shot at compromise was my day was the second one which involved some very sore legs after Adam's day and a 4.5-hour drive back home.  


1) All hiking aside, this was my first time staying at a bed and breakfast and I really wanted to try the breakfast (10/10, excellent decision).  
2) Staying for scheduled breakfast meant missing an early start at any of the trailheads - necessary for a parking spot during a fall hiking weekend in the Whites.  
3) On top of our later start, our legs were sore from hiking the Franconia Ridge so another big hike was also off the table.  
4) Judging by an attempted drive through Lincoln, I knew the smaller/shorter hikes would be mobbed 

And so, we totally changed our plans and decided to pack up after breakfast and start heading south. 

I typed in "Best Hikes in New Hampshire" and started reading through the list of hikes outside of the Whites.  I quickly came across a name I had never heard, "Mt. Major".  This hike took you up to a peak overlooking Lake Winnipesaukee and at a 3.5-mile hike gaining about 1,100 feet of elevation, this wouldn't kill our sore legs.  This hike also offered lovely views at the cost of just a short detour from our ride home - it all looked promising.  And so, we pulled up to the trailhead to see about 200 cars lining the road and sighed as we realized you can't really escape the crowds of New Hampshire during leaf-peeping season.