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Old 09-10-2019, 09:25 PM   #1
rbi99
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Grace Peak along Boquet from 73

I am hiking in from 73 on Monday next week and spending three days exploring the area. Plan on tenting at the 3 1/2 mile mark. While I know the Boquet is a river, I was assuming there would be plenty of water at the camp site. Decided I better ask. No question is too dumb they say!!! While I am at it, how are the deer flies and mosquitoes now?
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Old 09-10-2019, 09:41 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbi99 View Post
I am hiking in from 73 on Monday next week and spending three days exploring the area. Plan on tenting at the 3 1/2 mile mark. While I know the Boquet is a river, I was assuming there would be plenty of water at the camp site. Decided I better ask. No question is too dumb they say!!! While I am at it, how are the deer flies and mosquitoes now?
I forgot the deet last weekend and got bit up pretty good by the mosquitoes. Luckily it was cool enough so I was mostly covered except for my head, neck and hands. No other bugs to speak of. It made for a very quick visit to the thunderbox, I'll tell you that much. Only came home with three mosquito bites on my ass so I'll call it a win.
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Old 09-10-2019, 09:47 PM   #3
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You'll have water...boil or filter.
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Old 09-11-2019, 07:33 AM   #4
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You will find this thread interesting.
https://www.adkhighpeaks.com/forums/...et-forks-trail
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Old 09-11-2019, 03:37 PM   #5
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Bugs are (unfortunately) still out but generally aren't bad. They've been worst in the late afternoon, by evening typically the temperature has dropped enough that they disappear for the rest of the evening.

By camping at the 3.5 mile mark do you mean camping at the last designated tent site? This is a large (but nice) site capable of accommodating several groups. Likely it has grown to its current size due to being the last designated site on the herd path- and accordingly it's not uncommon for multiple groups to end up there on the weekends.

There's 2 designated sites further north (located on the South Fork just after the herd path crosses from the North to the South Fork) that get less use. If it looks like the weekend might be nice, I'd probably consider picking one of these sites instead to avoid any possibility of crowds.

The stream is generally reliable up until where the herd path leaves to start the climb up to the base of the slide. You shouldn't have any difficulty getting water at least until this point.

Note also that the herd path becomes a little bit less well defined above the last designated tent site. To the experienced backcountry navigator it's not hard to follow, but there's a few spots that will probably require a moments careful consideration before continuing onward.

The slide climb is nice and generally not super difficult- although there's about 10-15 feet of "just barely technical" rock scrambling right at the end. It's the sort of situation where there's plenty of hand and foot holds and if you keep your wits about you, wear good hiking shoes with decent grip, maintain 3 points of contact, etc., your odds of falling are slim- but any fall would hurt, a lot. I'd generally recommend going up the slide and returning via the herd path. If the weather looks bad (rain), I might consider avoiding the slide entirely.

The herd path does continue around the slide, swinging south to join the South Dix/Grace herd path just north of the col. Note that the Boquet herd path is usually brushed in where it joins the main herd path along the ridge, an act perpetuated by well-intentioned yet ultimately clueless hikers.
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Old 09-11-2019, 06:37 PM   #6
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The site I plan on camping at drops down to the left of the trail and is situated right next to the river. My wife and I hiked into there a few years ago, but I didn't go any further then that. Plan on hiking in on Monday or Tuesday, depending on the weather. Only climbing one day and am trying to hit it when the weather is best.
I very much appreciate all of this incredibly helpful info.
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Old 09-11-2019, 07:01 PM   #7
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OK, yeah, I think that's one of the 2 sites I mention as being before the last site.

If you're going mid-week, you might consider staying at the last site to put you closer to the slide. Like I said, despite being a big site it is nice.

There is also a really nice designated site on the spur herd path that leaves the main route and continues west along the North Fork of the Boquet. The site is located in close proximity to a very scenic waterfall. The site gets moderate use- less than you'd think, though, due to it not being on the direct route to Grace.
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Old 09-12-2019, 12:25 PM   #8
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I know the usual starting point going to Grace from 73 is up the 100' hill, then crossing the river about a 1/2 mile in. Being 68 I want to try covering as many bases as I can. The other starting point is to go back over the bridge and hike in from there, eliminating the river crossing. Since it gets much less use I'm sure it is at least a little difficult to follow. If I were to determine that the risk to me of spraining an ankle crossing the river is too high (not saying I think it will be, but want to know as many options as I can), just how difficult is it going in from the other entrance?

Secondly, if I do the slide but again determine those last few 100' are little too steep for my blood, is it easy at that point to hook up with the so called herd path running along the side of it? Wondering about over growth and such blocking the way over to it.
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Old 09-12-2019, 01:05 PM   #9
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The path that sticks to the west side and avoids the 1st river crossing is moderately challenging to follow.

Conversely, if you follow the main path on the east side of the river, it's much more obvious- but the river crossing itself can be a little difficult to locate due to several factors. There's numerous short spur trails that branch off to access the river, and there is a continuation of the path on the east side of the river, heading south of the crossing (which will eventually take you to a designated tent site high up on a gravel bluff overlooking the river, and from there to Rhododendron Pond).

Navigationally, I think sticking to the main route (and doing the 1st crossing rather than avoiding it) is easier. But in any case, even if you look for the alternate route avoiding the 1st crossing and miss it, it's not a hard or long bushwhack through generally open woods.

BTW, even if you skip the 1st crossing, there's still a number of river crossings further in (at least 3 that I can think of off hand, and my vague memory wants to say that there's a few more beyond the final designated tent site). None are nearly so challenging as the 1st, but in high water conditions you can still expect to get your feet wet at some of the others.

The herd path to the slide (from what I recall) then follows the slide for a short distance before it branches off to the south. So if you were to wait until the last 100 feet or so of the slide to bail, your options are to either eat a bunch of spruce and fir as you bushwhack around the slide through incredibly thick forest, or descend back down nearly to the base of the slide and pick up the herd path there.

IMO, the last pitch really isn't that bad- I mostly just felt that it was worth mentioning so that you were prepared for a little bit of hand over hand climbing at the very end. But psychologically for some folks it can be a huge obstacle. It's definitely something to take seriously but with the right gear (good shoes especially) and safety-minded attitude, it's not particularly challenging.
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Old 09-12-2019, 01:33 PM   #10
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FWIW, my recollection is that the 1st crossing to the more established trail required a substantial "leap of faith". We followed the description in this post and didn't have an issue finding the crossing.

Apparently the crossing at Shoebox Falls is easier but the trail to that point is less established.

Last edited by AvalanchePass; 09-12-2019 at 02:50 PM..
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Old 09-13-2019, 05:40 PM   #11
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Decided I am coming up on Monday, then hiking in on Tuesday. Even though I am coming up from Cleveland and that will take 9-10 hours, if I leave early enough I will have plenty of time to check out both starts to the trail and decide which side of the river I want to hike in from. That will still leave me enough time to get back to Art Devlin's and watch my Browns play a depleted Jets team. Dinner at the Asian Buffet in Saranac has to be the best dinner deal around.
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