Focus: Northern Hardwoods Forest birds and wildflowers
Season: Available June - July
Hike: 3 mile round-trip; Difficulty: Intermediate
Time: 4 hours
Size: 3-9 persons
Miller State Park hosts Pack Monadnock (2290'). This trip is birding focused and may not reach the summit if the birding is good. This trip follows the Marion Davis Trail, which begins near the park entrance. The park itself lends itself to a wide variety of outdoor activities, including camping, hiking, and mountain biking. We of course will use it for birding. Pack Monadnock is the highest peak in the region and its summit has a fire tower. On clear days with good visibility, the 360 degree views offer sights of Boston, MA, the Green Mountains of Vermont, and the high peaks in NH's White Mountains..
Directions and Parking: Drive NH RTE. 101 to the top of Temple Mountain. Watch for sign "Miller State Park". Turn into a slight and short incline that gets you into the parking lot. There is a required 'donation' per parked car. As you look up the mountain, the Marion Davis Trailhead will be on your right.
Trail Conditions: This trail can be very muddy, and significant lengths of the trail follow or cross water. One should plan to get one's shoes wet and/or soiled with mud. Slipping is a potential hazard on this trail. One or more hiking poles would be a good assist on the trail. The trail is not exceptionally steep, although there are some steeply pitched sections near the top.
What to Expect: The focus of this trip is to find Spring migratory birds, and even some breeding birds as many of the residents and early migrants are already hatching young. We will spend time searching through the erupting canopy for good views and we will practice our bird song ID skills. Summiting is neither an expectation nor a goal for this trip.
What to Bring: Map (I will provide a map on the tour), camera, binoculars, field guides, appropriate footwear and clothing for the conditions, drinking water, sunscreen.