NEClimbs - information for New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont rock and ice climbers
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4 out of a possible 5
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October 27, 2011

Hi Folks,

Over the past several weeks I've been postponing clipping the last of my tomatoes off the vines, covering them at night when the projections were for frost. This morning I figured that since there was snow predicted for this afternoon and evening I'd better get off my ass and pick the last of them, green or not. Amazingly there were over a dozen fruit on the two large plants, a few of which were close to ripe. They should ripen in the house over time. I suppose there's a part of me that has been hoping that summer/fall would just keep on going forever and tomato plants would keep producing. Being out in California for a week kept perpetuating the delusion I suppose, but after a week of cool and cloudy days and nights I think I've finally accepted the impending winter as fact!

When I rode into town Wednesday morning the tops of the Presi's had a crust of white on them at what seemed to be about 5,000 feet. In spite of being a rather dull day, it was quite inspiring. The MW Observatory webcam pictures have been showing pretty consistent snow and ice on the summit. The evening news had pictures of families who had come up on the Cog and children playing in the snow and rime on the summit building deck. The Mount Washington Avalanche Center, what used to be, hasn't come up for the winter yet, but I'm sure it will be pretty soon.

Hurricane Irene had a significant impact up here that will assuredly be felt for some time to come. For one example, the Sawyer River Road was totally washed out about 2 miles up and as of a couple of weeks ago was very close to impassable. Lots of folks, myself included, use it to cross country ski and hike in the winter, however that may be difficult if not impossible this year. In addition there was a landslide in Tucks on Hillman's that may change things there as well. It's going to be interesting to see what the state of things is going to be in the ravines and the trails all over the White's this winter. The first folks up the trail to Willie's Slide and Hitchcock Gully from the tracks could find it entertaining…

The temps have been in the mid-40's almost all this week and unfortunately I didn't get out to go climbing at all. I've been hopeful for a little bit of Indian Summer and we still might get it, but whatever cracks are seeping now, will likely stay that way until it freezes. I have a couple of projects that I still want to get on, but I'm not one for climbing rock with frozen fingers and stiff non-sticky rubber. [wry grin] I have my fingers crossed tho…

There is so much water in the system that the puddles in the woods aren't draining very quickly right now, even where it's mostly sand. I was out on the bike ion the woods on Wednesday and while it is surprisingly dry in the higher areas, the lowlands are somewhat muddy. I'm going to keep after the bike as long as I can tho, since I can bundle up and ride as long as the roads and trails are clear.

Even tho I'm hoping for some more warm weather, usually there is ice somewhere by Thanksgiving. Tuckerman's is most often the place to go, and I have my sights set for that as being the season introduction. Brad White and I usually make that our annual pilgrimage and I hope it's happening by then. In the past some folks have climbed ice on the Black Dike around Halloween, but that's a crap-shoot. I've been up there right after that, but you never know and it rarely lasts. You just have to keep our ear to the ground and grab the opportunity when it presents itself, I will be...

Mobile Version Of NEClimbs Coming:
Over time I've working on a mobile version of the web site. While you can currently access it in your smartphone's browser, it's not optimized for it and is can be difficult to navigate. I always thought this would be a great thing, to be able to access the Routes Database from your phone, check the current weather for the cliff and see the webcam. I've personally been over at Humphrey's, didn't have my copy of Webster, but did have my smartphone so I was able to pop onto the web to check something. Sure it was a bit awkward, but still very useful.

So here are the main menu options I currently have implemented:

 Route Database block & access:
 5 latest routes in database
 Instant bug or Ice Report
 Current weather at Cathedral
 Quotes From The Ledge

 Current weather
 AccuWeather graphic & link
 various local & regional forecast links

 area list and links to rock climbing areas
 link from area list to all ice routes listing in various sort orders
 you can click each route name and see all the info and a picture if available

 area list and links to ice climbing areas
 link from area list to all ice routes listing in various sort orders
 you can click each route name and see all the info and a picture if available

FYI not everything on the site will be accessible this way, the forum for instance will not be. This will NOT be an "app", it will be a specially formatted version of this site, only accessible via the web! While I have the code to do so, I am not sure that I will want to FORCE someone coming in on a mobile device to go to the mobile site, as many sites do. I was thinking about putting a link on the main site that folks would click on or bookmark in their browser.

There is a thread about this on the forum in the Climbing Not section and you can check out the BETA version here:

Warren Miller's "Like There's No Tomorrow"
Friday, December 16 · 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Granite Films & Davenport Mountainsport present Warren Miller's 62nd film, "Like There's No Tomorrow". Featuring Chris Davenport and Hugo Harrisson in Warren Miller’s first ever segment from Mt. Washington, NH. With live presentation by Chris Davenport.

Tickets are available online at:

Doors open at 6:00 p.m, show starts at 7:00 p.m.
$10 tickets, kids 12 and under free.
Proceeds benefit the Eastern Slope Ski Club.

Chris will also be signing posters and his new book "50 Classic Ski Descents of North America" in Ptarmigan's (Attitash Base Lodge), 3:30-4:00 pm that afternoon.
2012 AMC Ice Program:
Ever dream of mountains? Real mountains have ice and snow, and unless you know how to climb on that frozen delight you aren’t going there. Fear not that those toes of yours will never tread there, you are in luck! The Boston Chapter Mountaineering Committee will offer the 2012 Ice Climbing Program this winter. This program teaches waterfall ice climbing and technical mountaineering skills. The focus is on the equipment, techniques and practices that are useful on the mountains and crags of New England as well as ice climbing areas worldwide. The truth is if you can climb on the bullet hard ice of New England you should be able to climb ice anywhere. I’m sure right about now you are saying to yourself, sign me up! Not so fast, little ice chip. You should have rock climbing experience and winter sport experiences such as hiking, skiing, or snowshoeing. Figure skating and ice fishing won't help your cause much.

The program will have two lectures at Cabot Hall (4 Joy Street, Boston) the first is on Wed, December 7th, 2011 at 7:00 pm. The second lecture is on Wed, January 4th, 2012 at 7:00 pm for accepted students and those on the wait list. There will be two upcountry weekends where you will get to touch honest-to-goodness real ice on January 21/22 and February 4/5. For additional information and to apply for the program please see our website at The cost of the program is $275 for AMC members and $325 for non-members.

REEL ROCK Film Tour - North Conway:
Join in for a night of REEL ROCK with 6 amazing films and great prize giveaways. Tickets are $10 at the door, or come early and eat dinner in the restaurant to get a $5 ticket.

A BIG THANKS to Sterling Rope, the American Alpine Club, Tuckerman Brewing Co. and IME for supporting the show!

Thursday, November 3 · 7:30pm - 9:30pm

Tickets on sale Thursday 9/22 from EMS and Maine Rock Gym for $10, and $12 at the door.

Horsefeathers - Upstairs Bar
2679 White Mountain Highway
North Conway, NH

A BIG THANKS to Sterling Rope, the American Alpine Club, Tuckerman Brewing Co. and IME for supporting the show!

Instant Ice Report:
Well it's not ice season yet, even in the upper regions, but it sure feels as if it's coming soon. There is a ton of water in the system and if it got cold now we'd be loaded. Stay tuned...

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 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:

Remember - climb hard, ride the steep stuff, stay safe and above all BE NICE,

Al Hospers
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire

If you are worried about the risks in climbing take up bowling!!
Steve Weitzler
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