We decided on Mt. Tecumseh. An easy two hour drive from Cambridge, a half day hike, but still a 4000' to check off the list, it was the perfect option.
We arrived to the trail head around noon. A few other groups had started just before us and a few had just returned to their cars. The beginning of the hike was peaceful with birds chirping and the sound of the river rushing nearby. It was an easy-moderate grade until about 3/4 of a mile in, where patches of snow and ice appeared. Still very manageable, we continued on and came to a river crossing, a gentle downward slope and up the other side. Despite it being a gentle slope, it was covered in ice making navigating tricky. Discussion of calling it quits came up, but I was still very determined. We took a break at a viewpoint onto the ski trail and then continued to make our way.
We continued on until we simply could not go any farther. It was too slick and there was no way around it. We watched a few people zoom up past us and a couple coming down- all with the use of their micro spikes. As soon as the ice started on the trail Alex and I became instantly mad at ourselves for carelessly leaving them hanging on the gear wall at home. We also felt a little, well, stupid really, for not thinking twice about what the conditions might be on the trail in April.
And so, we admitted defeat and retreated. However, not wanting to go down what we just came up we made our way through the dense woods about 100' to the ski trail, only to find it covered in snow. It was soft enough in some parts and so we continued on for a bit until we found a perfect spot to hang the hammock, enjoy lunch, a beer and a power nap.
We returned to the car via hiking down a ski trail and then ended the day at a nearby picnic area on the river.
Despite our failure to summit Mt. Tecumseh, we did not fail to have an amazing day. Sunny spring weather, spending time outdoors and a fun adventure. At least we learned something very valuable from this trip and we will [hopefully] never forget the micro-spikes again! Mt. Tecumseh we will be back for you soon!