When you decide to climb a mountain, the next thing you have to decide is what trail you are going to take! I am leaving this up to Geoff. He was in charge of researching Mt. Katahdin, and we all came down unscathed, (if you can call the bruises on my knees unscathed), so I am confident in his choice here too.
Mt. Greylock has 13 trails to choose from. Geoff took a look at the various trails and the winner is, The Cheshire Harbor Trail. The average time to climb from base to summit and down is listed at 6.6 miles. The elevation gain is 2,100 feet and the climb is rated moderate to strenuous. Ok – any trail has to be easier than the Mt. Katahdin climb that took 6 hours up and 6 hours down, right?
Mount Greylock is quite unique when you take a closer look at it’s geology. There are red spruce forest that date back more than 150 years on the lower slopes and at about 2,600 feet, the only sub-alpine forest in Massachusetts and southern New England. This boreal or spruce-fur forest is normally associated with Canada, not New England.
Ecologists have compared the transition in forest vegetation zones from base to summit as if walking from Pennsylvania to northern Maine in one day. What a beautiful way to spend the day, passing through what equals four climate zones. Where else on earth can one pass through four climate zones during a one day hike up a mountain?
When we started Parker’s Climb, I had no idea that I would experience such beauty by climbing a mountain. It was not even part of the consideration in the choice to climb a mountain as our fundraiser. i just wanted to raise awareness for a PD. I just wanted to help fund a cure for PD. I never considered the beauty we would experience on our journey. So this is a blessing, a prize to be savored along the way.
Endurance is not just the ability to bear a hard thing, but to turn it into glory.