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The current interest in the state-o-the-ice up here in the north country really
reminds me of those family trips we took as kids before the days of DVD and
CD players. My sister and I were ensconced in the back seat, surrounded by
small mounds of books and toys. On short trips, around an hour or so, we were
pretty much self-amusing. Past the 2 hour mark we began to annoy each other,
generally staying away from directly pestering mom and dad. But, as the trip
dragged out, we got more and more antsy, culminating in chants from the back
seat as we came up on each highway exit,
"Are we there yet, daddy?"
Well we're all on the road to ice season 2005, and the trip is starting to
drag out a bit. By this time last year Pinnacle had been done a number of times,
even by me, and the Dike and Hassig's as well. This year, and no real surprise
here, it's different. Why no surprise? Because in actuality this year is a
lot more like most other years. The ice typically doesn't really come in until
around Thanksgiving or after. Our record setting dump of snow a few weeks ago
got everyone all hot & bothered, but didn't do the job. Heck, it couldn't.
The ground isn't even frozen yet for heaven's sake!
This week we had 2 bouts of rain. .6+ on Tuesday, .7+ on Wednesday, and another
.21 already today - tho it's not currently raining here in the Valley. This
has had a significant impact on the snowpack on Mt. Washington and vicinity.
When not obscured it's pretty obvious that a lot of the snow up there is gone,
at least for now.
For those interested, the river is quite high. It has gone from 4' at the
gage on the Saco near Conway, to almost 8' right now.
So when I get all those emails asking about whether this or that is IN yet,
it conjures up the sounds of my sister & I pestering my dad. Of course
in the context of this discussion I hear it as,
"Is it ICE yet daddy?"
And I say pretty much the same thing that dad used to say to us.
"Hang on boys and girls. We'll be there soon enough."
P.S. Next Thursday is Thanksgiving - WOW. It seems so soon this year. Guess
that's due to the warmer weather. I'll be putting out the Report as usual,
but as many of you get it at work I'm taking this time to wish you & yours
a HAPPY TURKEY DAY.
Pinnacle Expedition Rope:
There's been a humorous thread on NEClimbs about a fixed line on the first
pitch of Pinnacle Gully that was left behind when an early-season climber
quite smartly bailed. Mike Tanana was up there (wishin' & hopin') on
Monday and sent me a couple of pictures of the ravine conditions. One is
on the home page this week, but you can't see the rope all that well. Here's
a shot that shows it a lot clearer. I'm also including another he took of
He made these comments;
"All the ice was baked and falling off the cliff. When we saw Pinnacle
was a waterfall, we thought of maybe heading up Central, but while we were
in the fan the ice bulge on Central fell off and shattered into 100 bowling
ball sized pieces that exploded all over the fan."
Thanks Mike. Once again ladies and gentlemen, making the point that it's just
not ready yet! Stay tuned...
Save The View:
Everywhere I look, developments seem to be springing up. Here in North Conway
I figure it's just a matter of time before it spreads to the top of Whitehorse
Ledge. An Arizona developer, who apparently happens to also be a climber,
wants to build homes on the rim of the New River Gorge in West Virginia.
The homes would be directly across from Junkyard Wall and Bubba City. People
have until Nov. 17 - THAT'S TODAY FOLKS - to express their opinion over this.
If you have an opinion, go to the web site above and speak up.
Ice Conditions Report:
Selected Ice Conditions effective February 23, 2017
The warmup has really hit us hard everywhere but in the higher elevations. Anywhere in the direct sun is dam close to toast right now. The Amphitheater at Frankenstein is off the radar, or certainly should be. You can probably do the Pegasus rock finish, but that's all. And I would be VERY careful walking under anything over in that area. As of today, Thursday Feb 23, Standard Route still looks OK. I also spotted someone climbing on Waterfall, tho I'm sure that the normally funky top outs are worse. The bottom of Dropline fell down, but Dracula still looks good. I was pleased to see that Willies still looks good. The snow has compacted and I saw what looked to be blue ice. The left side of Willard is basically gone, but Hitchcock, The Cleft, Left Hand Wrench, the far right slab and Elephant Head are still climbable. Other than the Barking Dog and North End I would write off Cathedral Ledge. I know people are going to ask about Repentance, etc and frankly I would caution away from it. In fact anything that is supposed to be attached to rock is suspect. Not to mention the fact that there is a LOT of stuff hanging around above you on Cathedral at this time.
We've finally pretty-much finished "Fundraiser Month" at NEClimbs
and The White Mountain Report and I'm certain that all of you are happy about
that. <grin> The RAFFLE DRAWING will be held on Monday, November 21st
to give folks mailing in donations time to get their letters delivered. All
winners will be notified via email and/or announced in next week's White Mountain
Report and on line. Your donation must be received via mail or PayPal ON OR
BEFORE November 20, 2005 to be entered. Remember, you MUST make a donation
to enter the raffle! There are 15 very cool prizes, including a 60 meter 8
mm Sterling Rope tag-line, a Petzl headlamp and lots more.
I want to sincerely thank everyone who sent a donation to support NEClimbs
and Report. 154 individuals felt that NEClimbs and the White Mountain Report
provides a service worth contributing to. Considering that 10 days ago there
were only 56 donors, that's pretty amazing! This beat my minimum desired donor
base of 150 individual donations. That is absolutely wonderful. Without your
support this couldn't go on, and I really appreciate EACH AND EVERY contribution.
I want to repeat that I am always open to your ideas. If there is something
that you would like to see on NEClimbs, just drop me a line or post a note
in the Forum. I'm always interested in suggestions, criticisms and even offers
of help. <grin> My email address is at the bottom of every Report.
A few of you, 4 all total, have experienced problems making your donation
using PayPal. Every time I have made a test donation, on both Mac & Windows
using all the normal browsers, I have not had a problem. As best I can tell
this seems to take place when folks attempt to do it from work while behind
a corporate firewall. If you have a problem like that, please try again from
your home computer. In general PayPal is easy & painless and you can use
any credit card. And remember, you DON"T need to have a PayPal account
to use this service. Use this link -
Thanks again for helping keep the White Mountain Report and NEClimbs available
Quick Note About Subscribing To The Email Report:
I have been noticing some bounce-backs from subscribers that are different
from the typical bad email addresses. Apparently some people are employing
a new method of combating SPAM that requires that anyone sending email to
them be pre-registered with some service. The bounce-back says that in order
for them to get any email, I have to click on a link and fill out a form.
I don't manage the database of email addresses and I don't personally send
out the email report every week. I write it, and paste it into a program that
I wrote that automatically grabs the mailing database off the web and then
sends it out to you. It's pretty much a bulk-process. If you sign up for the
Report and you have a firewall or SPAM blocking program enabled, you should
put the Report email address in your exception list, or have it go to a Hotmail
or Yahoo address. That way you will be assured of getting your newsletter each
week. Registering my email address with your service so you can get the Report
simply isn't going to happen - sorry.
MRS Winter Meeting:
We had our annual winter Mountain Rescue Service meeting on Tuesday night.
Pretty uneventful, but there were a couple of interesting things to note.
1) As best as we all know there was only a single rescue this summer in the
Valley! That was the one I was personally involved in on Whitehorse and that
was detailed here. That's pretty amazing & a real good thing.
2) Chris Joosen, Mt. Washington USDA Forest Service Snow Ranger, brought in
a list of really great weather & condition links for Mt. Washington & the
area. I'm going to add these to the NEClimbs weather page, but I thought you
would like to get them first. While most are on the NOAA site, a couple are
from Mt. Washington Observatory (mountwashington.org). Definitely check out
the Auto Road Vertical Temperature Profile. 7 separate temperature readings
from equipment placed along the Auto Road. BTW - NOAA has really made some
updates to their pages and are offering tons of information for those who are
sufficiently motivated to take advantage of them. If you poke around you may
be amazed with what you find.
Special thanks to Chris for pointing me to this great resource.
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: