Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Bird Mountain (Birdseye)

July 1, 2011

My friend Deb had been wanting to do this hike with Kathi and me for awhile. It was a early morning hike starting at 6am. The weather was warm & muggy with some overcast.
Bird Mountain

Bird Mountain was the site of the now extinct Birdseye Mountain Ski area that had operated in the 1960's and was then later turned into a small campground in the early 1970's. There is still evidence of the old ski area on this mountain.

An old lift

The campground's pool

In 1998, an AVT club was formed and trails were cut to accommodate ATV's & snow mobiles. We took one of these trails to the summit. From the parking lot we walked towards the start of our ascent passing Castleton River wetlands passing a few small ponds along the way. 

Frog Pond
Once we passed the old site of the ski area the ascent begins. As the trail passes through a powerline it turns west and then meanders around to the south eventually heading east to reach the top. Surprisingly the trail was in excellent condition despite being an AVT trail. More of a road. An extremely steep road. that switchbacks in a few areas.

The trail up

It didn't take us too long to reach a junction at the top of the ridge This leads to 5 different lookouts. We choose to hit up a lower western lookout first. The terrain at the first lookout was muddy and the black flies were out in full force.

Black flies

Regardless of the little pests we still enjoyed the views to the west.

To the west
After a short break we headed back to the junction where we decided to check out the upper west and eastern views. The trail up was short but steep. Nonetheless the views were great from these two lookouts.
From the eastern lookout there are great views to the north and east as well as the valley below.

To the east

To the north
The valley below
After a short break at the lookouts and nibbling on a few wild blueberries we headed back down to the trailhead. Overall it was a great day covering a little over 4 miles and gaining 1460 feet of elevation. This was the first 4 miles of mine and Kathi's 1000 mile challenge

Happy Trails :~)

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