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Sometimes I just wonder what drug those weather folks are on when I hear their reports. It seems as if every time I turn around lately there are predictions of rain or even snow, but we so rarely get either. Last week there were dire predictions of snow for Saturday night and Sunday and again on Tuesday on all the regional weather services. Surprisingly when Daz and I headed out on our Dad & Son errands Sunday morning we got something close. Yes that's right, it was a lame version of the proverbial wintry-mix! A chilly and drizzly day with a slight bit of sleet mixed in the rain. Can you imagine how hard it was to get a strong-willed 6 year old into his winter coat that morning? It certainly wasn't my idea of a good time, let me tell you. Thank goodness I didn't have to make him wear his snow pants!
Here is an excerpt from the Mt. Washington Observatory weatherman Tim Markle's report this past Monday -
"The differences between the forecast models and the actual weather continued Saturday and into Sunday. Rain moved in overhead by late Saturday morning. However, due to the large area of high pressure and the extremely dry conditions (relative humidity values of 5% to 20% over all of northern New England) the precipitation did not actually reach the ground until late that night or into the early morning hours of Sunday! In fact, the summit did not go into the fog until around 4pm Sunday afternoon! With the models not handling the storm situation well, the forecast for the summit was tricky. Temperatures were expected to rise into the mid 30s on Sunday, but instead held in the lower 20s. We were expecting sleet and freezing rain, however, more snow fell and the summit received about 1.5 inches of snow, mixed with the sleet and freezing rain."
"the models not handling the storm situation well..." DUUUH! the models weren't handling the situation AT ALL. You just have to wonder how in this age of super computers, satellite imaging and general high technology, can things go as awry as they have been. Right now we're in the middle of what feels a lot like late fall. The days have been crisp, clear and dry, with hardly a cloud in the sky from early morning until later afternoon. Pretty close to perfect weather for almost anything outside-related. Thank goodness. Makes me a bit worried about June tho. If you will remember it pretty much rained the entire month last year!
The big plus with this weather is that it's slowed down the impending bug explosion. During the warmer temps last week I was starting to see the blackflies and mosquitoes coming out. The blackflies weren't in blood-feast mode yet of course, but they were zipping around. The frosty mornings have certainly helped but I wouldn't mind a hard-freeze to pretty much kill them off.
Kismet Rock Foundation's Jubilee:
Based in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, Kismet Rock Foundation offers comprehensive technical courses in rock climbing and mountaineering to well-functioning youth who, because of financial or cultural limitations, would not otherwise have access to the immense value of such an education. This is a great organization that has made a difference in the lives of kids.
The theme of this year's benefit event, which is being held on May 20 at the Eagle Mountain House, is 'Kismet, Community and Climbing'. Plans for the evening include cocktails, dinner, live music by the Kismet Rock Stars (Mike Jewell, Alain Comeau, Andy Hannon, Mary and Tom Rebmann and Holly Reville), dancing and special presentations by Kismet students.
Visit the Kismet website for an invitation and RSVP form. RSVP's MUST be received by May 11. Hope to see you there.
Ice Conditions Report:
Selected Ice Conditions effective March 26, 2015
There is still ice to climb in many places right now, but with the warm temps and rain coming that’s going to change quickly over the next week. I would expect that the Frankenstein Amphitheater will become problematic pretty soon. Even as big and fat as Standard Route is, it is in the full sun all day so it’s getting beat up. Climbs like Dracula, the North End of Cathedral, Lost In The Forest, Upper Hitchcock and various things in the shade will last longer of course. We’re moving into the best time for climbing on Mt Washington for the next 3-4 weeks. That said, it’s time to think about rock season folks.
Access Fund Awards Over $22,000 in Climbing Preservation Grants:
The Access Fund kicks off its fifteenth year of supporting grassroots climbing advocacy and conservation projects by awarding more than $22,000 in its first Climbing Preservation Grants cycle of 2006 for trail improvements, preservation of private lands from development, organizational startup and solutions to belay area erosion. Presented three times annually, these grants provide financial assistance for local climber activism and protection of the climbing environment in the United States. Northeast grants include the following.
Ragged Mountain Parking Feasibility Assessment, Connecticut - A grant was awarded the Ragged Mountain Foundation (RMF) to conduct a comprehensive analysis toward the construction of a parking area. The RMF property contains wetlands and a conservation easement. Therefore it must first be determined if an ecologically sensitive parking area can be developed. Long-term access has always been uncertain due to the limited nature of parking. The project is a partnership between the Berlin Land Trust, private landowners and the local climbing community.
White Rocks Acquisition Project, Pennsylvania - The Explorer's Club of Pittsburgh (ECP) was awarded a grant to help pay for the acquisition of 800+ acres of open space and crags in southwestern Pennsylvania. This land is of local and regional significance and includes some of the best climbing in the area. Unfortunately is has been closed to climbing for over 10 years, and is a target for real estate developers. Long-term access and preservation of the area will be secured through the acquisition.
Benedictus, a climbing documentary:
Benedictus, by Jen Tennican and Bill Clack, chronicles Boston Climber Tom Callaghan's multi-year adventure in establishing a new rock climbing route on Cannon Cliff. The movie will be shown at The Regent Theatre in Arlington, MA on Wednesday, May 10th at 7 PM.
Tickets on sale at the door from 6 PM the day of the show
$7 (cash only, please)
****** For every ticket sold, JenTen Productions and the Boston AMC Mountaineering Committee will donate $2 to the North Conway Mountain Rescue Service! ******
For advance sales, please contact Jennifer Tennican at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please indicate Benedictus tickets in the subject line of the email.
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
Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are naught
without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the
happiness of a lifetime. Do nothing in haste; look well to each step;
and from the beginning think what may be the end.
Edward Whymper, 1865, the first ascent of the Matterhorn