NEClimbs - information for New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont rock and ice climbers
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October 16, 2003

Hi Folks,

So what about those Red Sox hey? Oops, wrong report... <grin> So, moving right along, and back on topic - the one good thing that's come out of this whole bolting thing, is that it's gotten people talking. Climbers who rarely converse, are calling back in forth discussing the pros and cons of the action. Ad-hoc meetings are taking place out in front of the climbing shops at 8 AM, on the road at the base of the cliffs, and in the bars at the end of the day. Two weeks later, it's still the main buzz in the community, and amazingly enough the tone is civil!

The Forum topic "Debolting Thin Air" in the Rock Climbing Section on NEClimbs has seen over 3300 views over the past 10 days. People whom I hardly expected to weigh-in on the topic have posted messages, both pro and con. That's a pretty amazing level of interest in something like this.

Bob Seymour, a Boston area climber from the 70's who used to climb a lot at Cathedral, was one of those hard-core type who also regularly soloed Thin Air for fun. Of course he knew Henry Barber, Joe Cote, et al. Now living in Tucson, he climbs much less but still has an interest in what goes on here. He passed along his take on the meeting and "debolting" issues through a mutual friend. With his permission we both thought it might be fun to include them in this week's Report.

" It's great to see the other old farts look a lot like me. Way back when -- when the Eastern Mountain Sports guides first placed a bolt on the Thin Air traverse to protect their clients I chopped it. That was the only bolt I've ever chopped. It was quickly replaced. I just ignored it after that. I always traversed below it anyway. The more things change the more they stay the same."

One of the other routes where a newly added bolt was targeted as "offending" was addressed last weekend. A bolt had been added on the first pitch of Bill Lowther's classic, Lost Souls. Last Saturday I was surprised to see the person who had put in the bolt, taking it out. It would have been an entirely different thing for someone else to have gone over and chopped it, and this bodes well for community spirit.

The topic, the fury and the angst over this issue will likely dissipate over the winter. That said, it will most likely come back a bit in the Spring when people get out there and do Thin Air again. If we're lucky it won't initiate a new spate of chopping and drilling. What I hope will continue is the discussion that has begun. I truly believe that we are not all that far apart on most issues. Many of the things that divide us can actually bring us together if we participate in the process of open dialog.


Third Annual Kickin' Access Benefit:
The Third Annual Kickin' Access to benefit the Access Fund will be on Saturday, October 18 at 7:30 p.m. at Primo's Cafe on Main Street, North Conway.

This year's event features the premiere of Kurt Smith's video, "Friction Addiction - Black Hills Gold". This video features daring runouts and highball first ascents from the sharp end of South Dakota's Black Hills. Also features historical insights from John Gill and climbing footage of John "The Verm" Sherman (and others) testing their mettle on South Dakota Granite.

Join the party with Kurt Smith spinning records and win some cool gear donated by sponsors. Admission is free, but you will be asked to make a donation, or better yet, join the Access Fund.

For more information, contact Craggers at 603.356.8877


We're All Winners:
We had the drawing for the NEClimbs and White Mountain Report raffle. No high-technology used here... An interested kiddo and an appropriate baseball cap is all that's needed.

So, here's the list of winners of this year's raffle

$20-34 category winner - Francis Callahan
$35-49 category winner - Michael Lohmiller
$50+ category winner - Brian Gollwitzer

Another BIG thanks goes out to everyone who participated in this year's fundraiser. The response in the last 5 days was great, and we actually ended up 105% over last year. We simply wouldn't be able to do NEClimbs and the White Mountain Report without YOUR help. We get the support we need to keep things going, you get the information you need, and a few of you even get some cool SWAG. What more can everyone ask for?

Accidental Times:
It's been a busy several days from the standpoint of accidents in the area. A climber had a problem on Lakeview on Canon and ended up spending the nite on the ledge below the Old Man. An MRS group went over on Saturday morning to help out. On Saturday a climber took a fall leading the last pitch of Recompense, breaking their wrist in several places, but managing a self rescue. On Tuesday a hiker fell about 80' on the headwall at Tuckerman's, getting seriously injured and requiring rescue and litter evacuation by an MRS team. Couple that with a 10-year old child missing near Lincoln and you have an extremely busy weekend for search and rescue personnel.

Winter Is Coming, But still...:
It's pretty darn clear that Fall is rapidly winding down and Winter is on the way. We've had snow in the higher elevations and hard freezes down here in the Valley. That said, in the sun on South facing crags the conditions are wonderful for rock climbing. Although we're past peak for foliage, everywhere you turn the views are still magnificent and there's something about the quality of the light and the smell in the air that makes a trip up a great bet for a fun time. Here's a couple of images taken last weekend...

Humphrey's Ledge
Brian Johnson on Inferno
Gyrocopter from the South Buttress



Mobile Version Of NEClimbs:
Up on one of the Mount Washington Valley's finest crags and want to know what that climb you're looking at is? Or maybe you're on your way up from Boston and want to check out the Ice Report for your upcoming weekend plans. Or more likely, you're at work just want to daydream about your next adventure. Well if you have a smart phone handy, you can get to NEClimbs from anywhere you have cell service. While it doesn't offer every single feature of the site and it's not an "app", in mobile form, it does do a whole lot and is very useful. Here is the live link to the mobile version of NEClimbs:

http://www.neclimbs.com/mobile

Check it out and if you have issues on your specific phone, please feel free to let me know.

NEClimbs & White Mountain Report On Facebook:
Join us and LIKE us on Facebook. I'll try and post some interesting pix every Thursday and the latest Ice Report in the season, tho certainly not the whole Report. Here's where you can check it out:

http://www.facebook.com/NEClimbs/

Have fun and climb safe,


Al Hospers
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire


The vias normales had perfect lines but new rock was the essence of climbing for us; throwing loose holds over the shoulder, feeling the exposed grains crush like sugar on footholes....
Paul Pritchard
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