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October 22, 2015

Hi Folks,

Well I just gotta give some serious props to Majka Burhardt and Alexa Siegel for copping this season's first ascent of the Black Dike. For many years the goal was to climb the Dike by Halloween, so this is a big coup. By any standard these ladies make up a very strong rope team. They are talking about doing more climbing together this season and I’m sure it will be successful.

Here’s a link to a great interview with Majka and some fantastic pictures on the Julbo web site:

While we did have a pretty good cold-snap last week, it’s warmed up quite a bit now. And on top of that, we’ve had occasional rain showers. That said, things have been so day lately that the rain has had little impact on things. By mid-day after any of the rains, including some pretty big ones, things are dry again.

I’m heading out with George and David G on Sunday morning for our Fall Gunks trip. We’re a little later than usual, but at least we’re getting down there. We all have made our lists of climbs that we want to do (CCK, Shockley’s, Son Of Easy O, etc) and we’re hoping for some good weather. I’m personally having to slide it in between 2 busy weekends of Band gigs, making it a little more stressful than usual. But that’s OK and I’m really looking forward to it. There’s just something really special about getting away from the Valley and climbing on different rock for a few days. These Gunks trips are pretty much the only climbing “road trips” that I get any more and I really do look forward to them. George, on the other hand, makes climbing trips to a variety of places every year. I just gotta say that he is still going very strong at 80!

Speaking of people doing well at an advanced age… My buds Phil and Ian and I hiked up Peaked Mountain on Tuesday. It was quite chilly even at 11 and there was a bit of snow left in the woods and patches of ice on the upper slabs. When we got to the summit we met a man and woman who were there just a bit before us. We chatted and the woman remarked that she was 80 and he was 83! The looked in great shape. He commented that his key to staying active, was “staying active!” Indeed! At the risk of quoting a TV commercial, “A body in motion, tends to stay in motion”. I think that’s the best advice going, just keep at it.

I’m shutting off the Bug Report, and switching over to the Ice Report, tho we’re still quite a ways from the real ice season. Stay tuned tho. Before you know it we’ll be hearing about folks up on Pinnacle and other stuff. You better get those tools in shape and crampons checked.
Hunting Season:
The hunting season started in September, so we’re well into it now. If you’re poking around in the woods hiking or biking, wearing Hunter Orange would be a good idea. I was over in Redstone, near the quarry, the other day and saw a hunter with a shotgun, so they definitely ARE around. Be Aware!

Valley Cycling:
Almost all of the trails here in the Valley are in great shape right now, making for some fantastic riding. In general it’s been so dry this fall that the rainy days, like today, really don’t make things get muddy. The water just soaks into the ground, and in 24 hours things are totally dry. I’ve been out 4-5 times a week all summer, and this has been one of the best summers I’ve experienced in the woods.

This weekend, Friday Saturday and Sunday, is the 3rd Annual Top Notch Mountain Bike Weekend up in Gorham, NH. This is a great get-together with great rides, movies, dinners, raffles, races and more. If you’re into riding, don’t miss this one. For more information, check out this link:

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

One thing to remember on the Eiger, never look up, or you may need a plastic surgeon.
Don Whillans
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