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OK, OK, OKÖ So, it's the first day of Spring. And what would spring be without -
- wait for it folks -
That's right, we got another MAJOR round of the white stuff last night. What was predicted as a moderate 3-6, turned into 12-16! That's right, right her win our very own Valley, in the shadow of Cathedral Ledge, we got 15 1/2 inches of very heavy stuff. To put it in perspective, I was able to ride the MTB down to the North End on Tuesday, and even rode around Puddin' Pond on the snowmobile trails, but that possibility is gone now - perhaps even for the season unless things pack down a LOT.
We got the call at 5 AM that there was going to be a 2 hour delayed start for school, and I'm pretty certain that if we hadn't already had so many snow days, school would have been cancelled. The roads were a mess taking the kiddo into Conway Village this morning, indicating that even the DOT folks were caught by surprise by this one. Wile we often get snows in late March, they usually are smaller than this one.
After 2 hours of snowblowing and clearing this morning, I took a ride up into the Notch to see what was happening. Unsurprisingly the road was in pretty poor conditions, especially through Bartlett. There were lots of places where there was 4-6 inches of snow-slush on the road! YUCK Fortunately the further north I went, the better things were. Not because there was less snow, but that the DOT guys were doing a better job - and probability were at it all night. The DOT has basically given up plowing the scenic pull-out just before Arethusa Falls and I thought it was interesting that the road to the upper Arethusa Parking was pretty much unplowed at 10:45 - plus there was only a single set of tracks going up there. The lot by the Willie House was being plowed as I went by, and the pulloff at Willie's Slide was cleared. The lot at the top of Crawford Notch was plowed, but there was no one there at 11 AM! I'm not at all surprised tho. After all, who would want to be the first person breaking trail into Frankenstein or down the tracks and up Hitchcock? I've done it in the past and it's a thankless task.
IMNSHO Places like Cinema, Hitchcock, Willies and Shoestring are all good places to stay away from for a couple of days. We had a big snow event last weekend that put a hard crust on things. Now with this new snow on top of that, the avalanche danger is surely HIGH. Take a minute to read the Mt Washington Avalanche Report below. What they are saying about the Mountain, applies to pretty much everywhere right now. That said, a friend and his wife skinned up the Tuck's Trail to HoJo's early this AM and came down the Sherbourne. He said it was great!
Ice Conditions Report:
Selected Ice Conditions effective November 26, 2015
While there certainly have been folks climbing early season ice in the upper elevations, and on occasion in places like the Black Dike, even that is barely IN - if you would call it that. The best ice Iíve seen has peen the pix my friend Matty send me of Tucks on the 24th. Everything in the lower elevations isnít really close at all. With temps up to 50 in Crawford Notch this morning, and fluctuating all over the place this weekend, including some rain on Friday, Iím not too confident in the idea that much in the way of ice making will be taking place. If you want to take a hike up on the Mountain with the idea that a hike is possibly all it may be, then thatís a great idea. Otherwise Iíd give it another week or so.
Ed Webster Slide Show:
I've seen many of Ed's shows over the years, and every one has been great. If you're in the area, come see an amazing presentation and support a good cause!
Ed Webster slide show presentation on the History of NH climbing
Saturday, March 29th -630pm
Gear/prize raffle w/ proceeds going to save Eagles Bluff via the Access Fund!
$10 in advance at the Maine Rock Gym/ $15 at door
Benefit Concert - Saturday March 22:
A band I play with, Bruce Marshall and the Nor'easters, will be putting on a benefit concert at the Abenaki Trail Restaurant in north Conway this Saturday from 8-11 PM for the Jen's friends Cancer Foundation. A $4 cover/donation at the door will be given in full to the Foundation.
Bruce Marshall is a well known singer, songwriter and guitarist who was a member of the Toy Caldwell (Marshall Tucker Band). He has put out more than 4 CD's and opened for Susan Tedeschie, BB King, Dire Straits, Lynrd Skinner and numerous more. the band plays many original tunes, as well as classic Allman Brothers and Marshall Tucker southern rock. FYI this is the best band I've played with in MANY years!
At this show we will will be joined by recording artist Charlie Farren. Charlie was the guitarist and singer with the Joe Perry project and funder of the Boston favorite Farrenheit. He is currently working on a project with John Bucher. He will be playing a solo set starting at 8.
If you are in the area this weekend and looking for something fun to do, this is it. The Abenaki has great food and beverages and is a great room for music. I hope to see you there!
Sean O'Neill slide show - First Paraplegic Ascent Of Bridal Veil Falls:
Come hear the extraordinary story of Sean O'Neill's climb of Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride, Colorado. From Rock and Ice (http://www.rockandice.com/lates-news/sean-o-neill-becomes-first-paraplegic-to-climb-bridal-veil-falls-wi-5-6?mc_cid=f5df2d8b17&mc_eid=[UNIQID]) :
Sean OíNeill became the first paraplegic to climb Bridal Veil Falls (WI 5/6) in Telluride, Colorado. OíNeill, has been paralyzed from the waist down since he was 25-years-old. He began climbing at the invitation of his brother and pro-climber Timmy OíNeill, and has since pushed the limits of what is considered possible for disabled climbers. Together the brothers have climbed Devilís Tower in Wyoming, Castleton Tower and The Tombstone in Utah and El Capitan in Yosemite, which heís successfully ascended three times. Last year he became the first paraplegic to lead climb. He also develops equipment that helps paraplegics actually climb instead of jugging a line. ďHeís a pioneer,Ē Timmy says.
International Mountain Equipment, IME/IMCS
North Conway, New Hampshire
Saturday, March 22
$10 donation suggested at the door
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
This is a group of people I used to go walking with. (long pause) That's me on the left. (even longer pause) On the right is the woman I married, Audrey. (very long pause, speaker looks at shoes) Which just goes to show that danger lurks where you least expect it.
Don Whillans commenting on a B&W slide showing a group of smiling hikers