I was up by 6:15am, prepped all of my gear and packed up my car, and then ate breakfast at 7am. I was at the trailhead by 8am and started hiking by 8:15am.
The Brothers trail up to the summit of Big Slide goes over Brothers (2720′), Second Brother (~3600′), and Third Brother (3720′), progressively increasing elevation. The first mile or so was very steep, but after that, it evened out for the most part, making for a nice vigorous stroll through the woods.
The Brothers Trail intersects with the Slide Mountain Brook Trail, and I took the spur trail to the right to climb to the summit (4199′).
At the summit, the temperature with wind chill was 15 degrees, but I was shielded by trees for almost all of my hike, so the wind bothered me much less than yesterday’s hike. From the summit, I headed back to the trail intersection and then went right, to descent Slide Mountain Brook Trail to Johns Brook.
I really needed to use a privy ever since I left the parking area, but with 2 feet of snow on the frozen ground, there wasn’t much in the way of options. On my way back towards my car, after 6 miles of hiking, right when I turned onto Phelps Trail, I saw a sign for a lean-to and figured (correctly) that they would still have an open privy. They remove most other privies during the winter months for whatever reason. I was *beyond* thrilled to find the privy, and it made my hike back to the parking lot a lot more pleasant.