I'm firmly convinced that Waumbek, in the Abenaki language, means "Backup Hike". Seems like everyone who had hikes scheduled for Saturday ended up with us on Waumbek instead. We were with an AMC group that had planned a hike up Jefferson but the rain in the morning made that an unappealing option. Waumbek, entirely below treeline, nearby, and with few views, made a good choice.
We started up the trail around 9:00 from the nearly full parking lot. The rain was steady most of the way up, gradually diminishing by the summit of Starr King. We met another AMC group from the NH chapter along the way who had also planned a Jefferson, Clay, and Washington trip but had also retargeted. The trip from Starr King to Waumbek was quite pleasant, and at the summit the rain had pretty much stopped and there were slight signs of sun.
That didn't last very long. After eating our lunch and avoiding the pile of moose poop right next to the summit cairn it started raining again, quite hard. We booked back to Starr King and by then everyone was soaked so worrying about the weather really didn't matter much. On the way down things cleared up a bit, and it was partly sunny at the now overflowing trailhead. We headed back to the cabin and the rain started again, so no one had any illusions about our missed opportunity on Jefferson.I took approximately 5 pictures all day, nothing much to see and raining too hard to pull out my camera. But nearly everyone got a new 4000'er and we all had fun.
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