Bob finishes his winter 4’s—again March 15, 2009Posted by Jenny in hiking, White Mountains.
Tags: 4000 Footers, AMC, Mt. Eisenhower, White Mountains, winter hiking
On January 5, 2008, Bob and I reached the summit of Mt. Monroe. Hurray!—or so we said to ourselves at the time. That was the 48th and final 4000 footer that we had climbed in winter, which is strictly defined by the AMC Four Thousand Footer Committee as the period between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. It wasn’t until last fall that we got around to sending in the paperwork in which you list each climb with the date and a few comments.
But we got back a regretful response saying that Bob’s climb of Eisenhower, which had occurred on December 21, 1997, did not qualify, since the solstice did not occur until 3:07 p.m. that day, and we had completed our hike by then. Well, at least it’s nice to know that these things are taken seriously! (I had already climbed Eisenhower in winter back in the pre-Bob era of my life.)
So all through this winter, I kept saying to Bob, “Hey, maybe we ought to go climb Eisenhower,” and then either the weather would be bad, or he would want to going XC skiing instead, or something…we planned it for President’s Day weekend, but he was recovering from a bad cold and I was getting the first twinges and sneezes that showed that the cold was soon to be mine.
So it all came down to this weekend. The weather had to be decent…and it was! We went up the Crawford Path past Mt. Pierce, and on to Eisenhower. A beautiful sunny day, temps probably in the upper teens up on the ridge, winds in the 40 mph range. We used face protection when heading into the wind, but much of the time we enjoyed the reflected warmth off the bright sunny snow. Above treeline the conditions were a combination of thin snow and ice, and crampons were the weapon of choice. Back into the realm of the mountain gods!