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Every year there are milestones in our
lives. Some are ones you do, like sending that crack you've been
working on, riding that hill you've always wanted to get up,
or marrying the person of your dreams. Others are ones that happen
to you, like getting a year older or noticing that you actually
do weigh 10 pounds more than you did in college.
We've just recently gone through three of our annual milestones.
One was the first time of the season that we grill and eat out
on the deck. That took place on Tuesday and was definitely early
this year. Usually we shovel the snow off the deck on Easter Sunday
to have tea out there, but this year there was none to shovel.
Tuesday was actually 85 degrees at 6 pm so how could we resist?
It felt more like July, than mid-April.
The second was seeing the guys out working in
the Schartner Strawberry field on West Side Road. Once they are
out there working I can almost taste the fresh strawberries that
we start getting in late June. That and the sweet-corn from the
Lucy Farms stand are two of the really special things of summer
The other, not nearly as nice unfortunately, was the first tick.
I went climbing on Cathedral Ledge on Tuesday and found one on
my belly that evening. YUCK! I checked the dog over & found
2 on him as well. I've spoken with friends who have been out at
places like Woodchuck lately and they have said that there were
lots of ticks as well as mosquitoes out there. Unless we get a
cold snap to kill off the first crop, it looks like it's going
to be an early season for the bugs. Hopefully the black flies will
hold off just a bit longer. Time to throw the bug dope into the
packs. I've put the Instant Bug report up on NEClimbs so you can
check it for yourself.
Pins Once Again:
I was very disappointed to hear that someone had stolen two sets
of pins from Upper Refuse a few weeks ago - the ones at the belay
for Black Lung, and the ones at the very top below the trees.
Then I went ballistic when I found out on top of that, the pin
in the corner on the first pitch of Fun House was also gone.
Worse than the ones on Upper Refuse, that one had been broken
off, leaving the stub in the crack! It's hard to figure what
someone is thinking about when they do something like this. Theft,
ethical statements, whatever... Any way you cut it, it's a really
asinine thing to do.
Thanks to an unnamed source who actually knows the perpetrator,
I was actually able to get back three of the 6 pins that had been
removed. Two were still usable as they were newly replaced last
year after a similar episode took place. I went over to IMCS and
spoke with Brad about it and picked up an assortment of pins to
use to replace them. The local MRS helps out with the cost of the
hardware. Tuesday morning friend and local climber Dave Lottman
and I met and went out to deal with the vandalism.
I was unable to get the body of the old pin on Fun House out of
the crack, but I did place a new one directly below it, so the
clip will be identical. The belay on Black Lung took some fiddling
to replace as I didn't have an exact replacement for one of the
original angles. Fortunately I was able to replace all 3 of the
pins on the belay at the top, tho not in quite exactly the same
holes. In general I think that things are OK. I totally wailed
on the pins with the hammer so I feel good about them. There is
a smallpicture of the Fun House pin on the Home page, but here
are a couple more:
All that said... Someone pointed out to me that by placing these
pins and acknowledging that I did it, I potentially leave myself
open for liability if someone has a problem with them. SHEESH!!!!
OK, given the litigious nature of this society, I feel compelled
to do the following:
CLIMBING IS A DANGEROUS SPORT THAT YOU DO OF YOUR OWN FREE WILL.
I MAKE ABSOLUTELY NO GUARANTEES AS TO THE QUALITY OF ANY OF THE
FIXED PROTECTION DESCRIBED ABOVE. IF YOU CHOOSE TO MAKE USE OF
THESE PINS OR ANCHORS YOU DO SO TOTALLY AT YOUR OWN RISK. YOU ARE
ALWAYS STRONGLY URGED TO BACK UP ALL FIXED PROTECTION AND ANCHORS.
There, now that's out of the way & I feel better. <wry
N e w E n g l a n d B o u l d e r i n
Tim Kemple's HOT new guidebook
The long-awaited guidebook for bouldering
in New England is finally out. This is the only comprehensive
bouldering guide covering New England's best areas. Written
by renowned climber and action photographer Tim Kemple, New
England Bouldering has the ALL the beta on all the problems
at Lincoln Woods, Pawtuckaway and Blair Woods, Hammond Pond,
Rumney, Smugglers' Notch, Western Mass, and McKenzie Pond.
Collaborator Pete Ward illuminates each area with insightful
and humorous historical sections and scores of Tim's killer
action photographs will pump you up to get out and climb!
Here's some excerpts from an interview
with Tim we did recently about the book and what's he's been
NEC - So how long have you been working
on this guide?
TK - I had a head start because I had already
done a Pawtuckaway Bouldering guide. So it was quick to update
that with Blair Woods and other new problems. All told it
took 2 months of me dragging my feet and 6 months of Dave
(Pegg the publisher) kicking me in the butt every morning
NEC - Have you done or attempted all these
TK - I think this might be a rarity, but
I have done all but a handful of problems in the guide and
attempted them all.
New England Bouldering is NOW
AVAILABLE. If you
want to be the first to get yours CLICK
HERE. You can see
lots more pictures, a sample from the book and read the full
interview with Tim. Remember, if you purchase the book through
us you support the White Mountain Report and NEClimbs.com,
and believe me - we sincerely appreciate your support.
I finally saw this movie last Friday. If you haven't seen it already, I strongly
urge you to do so. It is hands down the best climbing film I have ever seen.
It doesn't get a lot more real than this.
The weather up here has been absolutely amazing for the past 10
days. The weather pundits have been saying rain & storm & cold
fronts and the like. All I can say is that if you have been listening
to them & not coming North to climb, you've been missing out!
In fact I wish we would get some rain so we don't have a drought
Ice Conditions Report:
Selected Ice Conditions effective April 17, 2015
I know, I know there are some folks who will say that this or that climb is still IN, but believe me there really is no safe ice in the lower elevation now, so the rating has been dropped to a 1. This indicates that the only ice is in the higher terrain now. And in fact, other than climbs that have some significant part of them in the shade, like Pinnacle, everything else should be considered suspect. That said the skiing is supposedly amazing right now so grab it while you can. Starting next week we will move fully into rock season and will switch to BugCON ratings.
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:
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:
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire
I was once bouldering in solitude in the Needles, when a young female walked up and introduced herself and asked who I was. I told her and continued bouldering. She turned and walked away after a few minutes, saying over her shoulder: 'you can't be John Gill. He climbs much better than that'.