FKT: Grace Long - Cardigan Mtn State Park Loop (NH) - 2020-07-22

Route variation
Standard route
Gender category
Finish date
Total time
4h 38m 25s

Cardigan is a mountain I hiked many summers as a kid, and this area holds a special place in my heart. Following the route of the original route athlete, there is an initial ascent of Rimrock and the Gilman, and then the trail drops down and connects with what is apparently an old logging road, winding its way through the woods to the AMC lodge. I filled my water bottle in a stream and then carelessly used the lodge’s outside water spigot, which I believe makes this a supported endeavor. Please correct me if that’s not accurate. After the lodge you follow the “back 80” trail by marsh lands where there was plenty of moose sign. After climbing again to get to firescrew, the next section between there and cardigan is one of the most beautiful sections of hike I’ve ever seen. The entire area is full of juicy wild blueberries and there are 360 views. Once you hit the cardigan firetower, it’s a quick descent back to the car parking area. The entire solo trip fueled with spring energy gels. Perfectly cool and overcast day, looked threatening for rain but only barely sprinkled briefly.