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In the beginning of the summer it looked to many of us as if it was going to be fantastic. Then we slipped into a stretch of cool and rain and we all thought it was going to be a pretty poor one. Then we had a stretch of wonderful dry and moderate weather that was perfect for almost anything. Two weeks ago it felt as if we all were living in West Texas, too hot for anything other than the river or laying inside in front of a fan. Now it's clear, dry and mid-80's, darn close to perfection! Go figure…it's just that typical New Hampshire weather.
I got out climbing what was for me a ton last week, the last time being on a truly hot Friday morning. My buddy Jeff and I went over to Humphrey's just to run up a couple of things for the heck of it. Needless to say we wanted to stay out hoof the sun, so we went down to the Geriatric Walls at the far end of the cliff. To start with I got him to lead the Perez's and my new route, Daddy's Got New Shoes (5.6) as I wanted to get another opinion of the grade. He found all the gear placements that we'd cleaned out and managed to get a solid placement in the red Tricam pocket above the crux. He agreed that it was likely a 5.6 and that made me happy. We pulled the rope and I led it as well.
We wanted to do one more climb before it got too hot to do anything, and since he hadn't done the next route to the right, 3 Brushes (5.4), we decided to give it a try. I like the moves on this little climb, tho it can be a little finicky to get in the gear in a couple of places. I kind of feel that it could probably be rated 5.5, but whatever…he enjoyed it. Again we pulled the rope and I gave it a run. After I lowered off we decided that it was now officially too warm to climb any more, even in the shade, so we headed out. All in all it was fun to get out.
I didn't have any opportunity to do any more climbing over the weekend and I headed over to Waterbury Vermont to see an old friend and do some bike riding. We got rained out Monday afternoon, but in spite of a dire prediction Tuesday turned into a nice day. I'd never ridden up Smuggler's Notch so we did a loop that included a ride up the steep side of the notch. I've ridden all the climbs here in this area many times, including Mt. Washington, as well as ridden in the Pyrenees and that side of Smuggs was right up there with anything. Of course "the business" was short, but with a maximum grade of 25% on a couple of the hairpins it had my attention. The ride down was tricky, especially with a car on my butt initially who erroneously thought that they would be faster than me! However the first hairpin showed them their fallacy. [grin] It was a sweet ride and I hope to do again, sooner rather than later.
All in all a good week of doing lots of stuff outside. Sure I probably should have been in the house working on some programming jobs or practicing my music, but on nice days, even when they are hot, it's really hard for me to sit at a desk. I'm sure you can relate…
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.
Instant Bug Report:
Well it totally depends on where you are as to the bug situation. Here in the Valley with a nice breeze, there isn't a bug to be found. Out in the woods in the Moats the mosquitoes will carry you away. That said, it's a lot better than it was.
NEClimbs & White Mountain Report On Facebook:
Join us and hopefully 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:
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: