FKT: Eli Burakian - Mt Moosilauke (NH) - 2021-06-06

Route variation
the moose
Gender category
Start date
Finish date
Total time
17h 32m 20s
GPS track(s)

Moosilauke is a very important mountain to me. I ran the Ravine Lodge for a few years, got engaged on the mountain, wrote and photographed a book about it and have met some of the most important people in my life there. I have hiked the mountain many times over the years, but this is the first time I've every done all the trails at once. It was fun to be on that mountain all day and I was happy that I finished feeling strong and healthy.

Although I will be submitting this as an FKT, this can go a lot faster. I was carrying 22 lbs at the start with about 10 lbs of useful gear, and another 12 just to add weight as this was a training effort for an upcoming project. I had to stop for an hour due to thunder and lightning and heavy rains, and my final descent down Glencliff Trail was wet and fairly treacherous. But I enjoyed myself immensely and look forward to hearing stories of other folks repeating this endeavor.

Before I could start, I had to park my car at Glencliff Trailhead, then bike 15 miles with 2000 feet of climbing to get to the Beaver Brook trailhead. (I'm not a biker, but it was a fun extra little part of the adventure.) At around 8am, I started up Beaver Brook, then went down the Ridge Trail to the Al Merrill loop, where I turned uphill and followed the loop to the Ravine Lodge. It was pretty hot, but I was in the shade most of the day.

From there I went up Gorge Brook and down the Benton Trail, which was much more enjoyable and in much better condition than I would have guessed. I only saw a few people and when I got down to Tunnel Brook, I ran down to the Benton trailhead, tapped the sign and ran back and followed Tunnel Brook trail back to Glencliff. Very few people on this side of the mountain, and a nice gentle meander along some beautiful beaver ponds.

As I passed by my car at the Glencliff trailhead, it started to rain, and then thunder, and then pour. Luckily, I knew the Great Bear cabin was nearby, and although not open, had a big covered porch with a picnic table and swinging chair, and I was able to eat, dry off by putting on my birthday suit, and wait out the storm. I spent about an hour there, and it was a nice little recharge. Back at it I took the Hurricane Trail over Hurricane Mountain and when I reached Carriage Road, I dropped my pack and ran down to Breezy Point and back. I hadn't seen anybody in hours and wouldn't see anybody else for the rest of the day and night.

From there I took Hurricane over to Gorge/Snapper, then took Snapper up to Carriage Road to South Peak (my favorite spot on the mountain), where I just barely caught the last bit of daylight. Back down I went and halfway down Carriage Road I had to put on my headlamp. I followed Carriage Road all the way down to Hurricane and took that back over to the Ridge Trail which I followed up to the summit, which at midnight was somehow clear yet still pelting sideways rain with 40mph winds. Finally, I took Carriage Road to Glencliff and down to the car. The top mile of Glencliff was very technical wet rock and it took me a while to get down.

A long, enjoyable day on the most important mountain in my life.