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March 9, 2017

Hi Folks,

It was yet another week of rollercoaster weather in the north country. After a serious blast of warmth last week that say almost everything fall down, we had some real cold, rain, cold and now something in the middle. And what did we get - Can You Believe It? That's right, we got some more ice!!! In fact in some places we have more ice than we had before. Go figure...

Earlier this week I'd been hearing that the ice was coming back in, and I've watched it reforming out my back door, on Cathedral Ledge. Goofer's for one had completely fallen down, and over the past several days it's pretty much completely regenerated itself. I don't know how thin it is at the bottom, but it looks climbable. Diagonal, Repentance and Remission have all made comebacks, tho all look hard and sketchy. I rode the bike down to the North End this morning and climbed Thresher and the pillars and they were great. The little Scottish style gully start to Thresher was huge and the topout was better than it was 3-4 weeks ago.

When I drove up to the Notch it was snowing like crazy and the road had not been plowed or sanded. I couldn't; t see anything at all at Frankenstein so I decided to head up to Elephant Head in hopes it was better. There was a big tanker truck stuck on the hill by Silver Cascade and when I slowed to go around him, my van lost traction and I came to a stop. I had to back up, turn around and go back down to the flats. I waited till some cars coming down went by and got up a head of steam to try to make it up, and I was successful! WHEW.

Everywhere I looked the ice was surprising. Tho the Frankenstein Amphitheater was still thin, many other things looked good. It was amazing that Dropline had almost completely reformed, and even more surprising that Welcome To Machine looks close!!! Just goes to show what can happen when we get water in the system and come cold temps.

I rode earlier this week when it was cold and a bit today. Before we had the rain you could ride anywhere in the woods provided you have studded tires. When it's like this you also want to be wearing MicroSpikes because if you put your foot down you will absolutely fall down! Things have softened up a bit since then, but the cold we have coming in the weekend should make for some good riding almost everywhere.

Mt Washington Backcountry Ski Festival
March 11-12, 2017
Presented by The North Face

The first annual Mt Washington Backcountry Ski Festival is a gathering in the White Mountains of New Hampshire for backcountry skiers & riders of all abilities. While geared towards backcountry skiers and snowboarders, climbers should check out these parts of the festival:

* vendor camp at Ragged Mountain Equipment each day with demos including some mountaineering and ice climbing gear
* AIARE Level 1 avalanche course that runs in conjunction with the festival from March 10-12
* Apres Ski Party at Wildcat Mountain Ski Area on Saturday night (March 11) with free appetizers, open bar/pub, presentations, raffle & auction, and live band (Steven Cooney & The Wayfarers)
* best of all for climbers at the Apres Ski Party…featured presentation by Emily Harrington of The North Face Athlete Team, Emily will be speaking about her climbing and ski descent of Cho Oyu (6th tallest mountain in the world)

White Mountain Report readers can use the code of “nec10” to get 10% off their registration, code expires March 9. Full details and registration options can be found on the website and Facebook:

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.

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

Al Hospers
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire

Being out on lead is like having a loaded gun pointed at your head all day !
Russ "The Fish" Walling
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