It was a bluebird day, just around freezing, so we had to get outside for a hike. Starting after lunch has the benefit of being the warmest part of the day, and the added benefit of everyone else having already packed the trail down with snowshoes that morning, so we left the car in just spikes.
The snow bridge over Hedgehog Brook was still intact, which was my main concern with the Hedgehog Brook Trail, but at least we would have known right away if it was going to be a problem. The trail from there meanders slowly upwards next to the brook for half its length, only getting steeper towards the top. We passed a couple of groups coming down in snowshoes and thanked them for packing the trail.
The trail got very steep as we approached the Long Trail, and deep too, with the blazes just sticking out of the snow. From there, we had to duck to avoid tree branches to the face since we were so much higher than the ground.
After 2 miles on the Hedgehog Brook Trail, it’s only another .6 mile to the top of Burnt Rock Mountain at 3168′. I’d been here once before on my LT section hike, but while that time there were tons of people on the summit, this time there were none. We stopped at the first amazing view for a bit before continuing to the summit.
There were excellent views in all directions, including a completely frozen over Lake Champlain. It just froze completely yesterday for the first time in four years.
It was so sunny and calm at the summit that we were able to stand there in mid layers for at least half an hour without getting cold. But since we’d started the hike late, we knew we shouldn’t stay too long, and headed back down after some water and chocolate.
There was some good glissading coming down the Long Trail and the top of the Hedgehog Brook Trail, and then it was a fairly quick hike back out to the car.
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