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You think it’s cold? March 24, 2013

Posted by Jenny in hiking, White Mountains, winter hiking.
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Summit of Mt. Madison

Summit of Mt. Madison.

I’m sure you feel the same way I do—you’re sick of winter. It’s March 24, I’m in North Carolina, and there’s snow in the forecast the next couple of days. Today a friend and I had planned to go up Bradley Fork looking for the F-15 jet engine. The prospect of a wet chilly day decided us against it. Well, I suppose we have nothing to complain about compared with the folks in the Midwest.

I thought I’d share some old photos of winter hikes. Perhaps by looking at them, you will feel warmer by comparison. All of them were taken in the White Mountains of northern New Hampshire.

Winter hiking can actually be fun. We had a nice sunny day for this climb of Mt. Washington. No wind, and temps were above zero—not something you take for granted there in winter.

Bob climbs the Lions Head Winter Route on Washington.

Bob climbs the Lions Head Winter Route on Washington.

Above Tuckerman Ravine.

Above Tuckerman Ravine.

I make my way up ice near the top of Washington.

I make my way up ice near the top of Washington.

Observation Deck on Washington. Bob is posturing, as usual.

Observation Deck on Washington. Bob is posturing, as usual.

Conditions on a climb we did of Adams were really cold and windy.

I look cold. It was about three degrees and windy.

I look cold. It was about three degrees and windy.

Looking from Adams to Madison.

Looking from Adams to Madison.

We had “snow goblins” along the trail on a climb of Mt. Eisenhower.

Adam hikes along Crawford Path toward Eisenhower.

Adam hikes along Crawford Path toward Eisenhower.

I looked cold on Eisenhower, too.

Adam and I approach Eisenhower summit.

Below Mt. Jefferson.

Below Mt. Jefferson.

Sometimes the trip was long hard work.

I'not sure the summit of Middle Carter was worth the effort.

I’m not sure the summit of Middle Carter was worth the effort.

Bob crosses Lonesome Lake on the way to North Kinsman.

Bob crosses Lonesome Lake on the way to North Kinsman.

Adam tackles upper slopes of Lafayette.

Adam tackles upper slopes of Lafayette.

Bob and Pete on Moriah.

Bob and Pete on Moriah.

Mike and Bob on the Tripyramids.

Mike and Bob on the upper Sabbaday Brook trail, approaching the Tripyramids.

Oh, I forgot. This last one isn’t in the Whites. This is East Kennebago in western Maine—a bushwhack peak. I’m holding a moose horn we found.

Stay warm, and maybe spring will arrive one of these days!

East Kennebago---a canister peak.

East Kennebago—a canister peak.

Bob finishes his winter 4’s—again March 15, 2009

Posted by Jenny in hiking, White Mountains.
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Victorious Bob on Mt. Eisenhower

Victorious Bob on Mt. Eisenhower

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!

Looking toward Mt. Washington from Eisenhower

Looking toward Mt. Washington from Eisenhower