Andrew Brook From the Top Down, Sat., 10 July

by Craig Sanborn

We made it a leisurely day, thus a relaxed day. At 0900 we five met at the Mt Sunapee ski area. At 1000 we were the first ones riding the chairlift uphill on our comp tickets (hanks to the Resort). By 1115 we arrived at White Ledges above Lake Solitude for a half hour break. At noon we rebuilt the sign cairn at Jack and June Junction (memo: new post this season). We wandered downhill to where the Andrew Brook Trail crosses a seasonal stream. We added some stones to the cross-drain there, then dug out the channel until the water found an outlet and began to flow. By now, it being 1330, two volunteers left for the down-bound chair to attend family events that afternoon.

The remaining three carried on downhill in a streambed, sorry, I mean the trail. On the next flat we frogged our way past the remains of bog bridges from 1983, over some ledges, to the channel we dug about 2007. Once we sawed and pulled some blowdowns out of it, the water level dropped fast.

By now it was 1400, so we went back uphill and spent 45 minutes digging a new ditch at the one place in the gully where there might be slope enough to carry off the water. We cut through many small roots, dug a trench across the trail at a 45 degree angle, filled it with the largest rocks from nearby, and chinked between them with mud and roots. More fine-tuning needed, but the trail below started to dry when the water from above found its way into the new ditch and its slope carried the water away from the trail to percolate down into the soil.

At 1445 we started the hike back uphill to the summit, where we arrived at 1615. The ride down the chair was as beautiful as ever, and the cold drinks were most refreshing.