Hillsborough County Highpoint Trip Report

Pack Monadnock

Date: March 10, 2005
Author: Roy Schweiker

I'm not sure how many times I've climbed this one as I've done trail work on the Wapack Trail and also used to go up after work with the company walking club but this time I used a new trail and made it a twofer.

Part of the lower parking lot was plowed and I met two utility workers who had been to the summit by snowmobile and encountered drifts. I had expected to snowshoe up the road but, finding that the Marion Davis Trail had snowshoe tracks, went up that way instead. This is a good trail for snowshoeing, except for a few annoying descents on the way up, and reaches the summit at 1.4 miles. The fire tower has a new cab and will supposedly be staffed this summer if the state budget is approved.

Take the path to Boston Viewing Area where I could just make out skyscrapers in the haze, see sign for Spruce Knoll Spur and take it. This is marked with Nature Conservancy plastic markers and hadn't been broken but no trouble downhill. Find P/T marked stone in a col which is Peterborough/Temple town line, trail splits just beyond. Take a left which angles around summit ridge, then follows ridge back to junction.

I had expected to go down the road but things were going well so I went down the Wapack Trail instead. This had deep posthole tracks to mark the route but was easy with snowshoes. The cliffs over the parking lot face southwest and had little snow with some ice and bare spots so I took off my snowshoes to go down past them.

When I got home, I verified that the spruce knoll was the highest point in the town of Temple, so anyone doing the trail has 2 NH town highpoints as Pack Monadnock is the highpoint of Peterborough. That leaves you only 232 to go. For EMC types, you once could get a certificate for just visiting all 234 towns, there are also less than two dozen unincorporated places which are optional.

The park map is on-line as a PDF document. but doesn't show the Spruce Knoll Spur.

Cheapskates or those who want 1,000-foot gain should note the Raymond Trail from the west.