In 2011 I celebrated my birthday with Jaehee and a small group of friends with a hike of Franconia Ridge. This year I chose to create a tradition by doing another birthday hike. I am only a quarter of the way to completing all 48 of New Hampshire’s 4,000ers, so I set my sights on Mount Tripyramid in the White Mountains. Tripyramid has three peaks (duh), but only the North and Middle qualify as 4,000ers. South meets the absolute altitude requirement, but not the relative; it stands less than 200′ above the adjoining col.
I followed the tradition route up Livermore Road and then continued on the Tripyramid Trail loop clockwise up Avalanche Brook, over North, Middle and South peaks and then down Slide Brook. Livermore Road is a pleasant hike, but nothing too noteworthy. The lower sections of the loop are likewise nothing more than pleasant trails passing through the woods. The upper section of the loop, however, is as good as it gets. The slide going up to North Peak basically requires hands and feet at all times. It is extremely steep exposed granite. Care must be taken not to slip, as it would easily result in serious injury. In rain it is all but impassable, and in winter it requires technical mountaineering skills. Above the exposed area I entered back into the trees–the summits are all below treeline. Snow had dusted the treetops, but hadn’t made it to the mossy ground. The result was a spellbinding, mystical landscape that more than made up for the lackluster Livermore Road. The recent high winds from Hurricane Sandy had thrown down numerous trees on the summits, which only added to the otherworldly scenery. I absolutely could not have wished for a more beautiful hike.