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December 2, 2021

Hi Folks,

I hope you all had a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving. I got together with two couples who are good friends, so it was a very good one for me. Of course we are all fully vaxxed and boosted, so we all felt pretty comfortable. In that respect it's so much better than last year.

The day after Thanksgiving I drove up to Dixville Notch to climb Parasol with Matty Bowman. There was no snow in Berlin, but there was some up there. Not a lot, but enough to make things look nice. While there was ice up there, it wasn't good at all. Matty had climbed up there a few days earlier, but it apparently had deteriorated. The start was and very short first bit was basically verglass and the second section (which I walked up) was snow and a tiny bit of ice. The last section had some ice at the start, a rotten runnel with very crappy rock and no parasol! I was happy to have let him lead that bit. We rapped off using a single rope and his new Beal Escaper. I'd never used one before and I'm not sure what to think about it. I love Parasol, but I'll probably wait to go up again until it's been colder for longer.

After seeing some nice looking pics Wednesday from Matt Bowman I was excited about getting out and climbing something this morning. Unfortunately while making my coffee this morning I stepped on a tiny rogue piece of glass somewhere in my kitchen! The damn thing stuck into the end of my left middle toe and dripped blood all over the floor! [SHEESH] I have no memory of breaking a glass in the past year, so it must be something that happened late last year!. Go figure... Anyway, it took 20 minutes with my headlamp, a sterilized needle, tweezers and my strongest reading glasses to get the damn thing out. It's still tender so I decided that banging it against the ice this morning was probably not a great idea. [SIGH] So, you'll just have to settle for my snowy/foggy pics from the road and a few I cribbed from Matty... I'm hoping to get out tomorrow or Saturday.

ICE FEST 2022:
Yup, unless there is some serious problem again, the Mount Washington Valley Ice Fest is happening this year. The date is February 4-6, 2022 so stay tuned for website and registration updates, guest guide information, and party details. And YES, with any luck there WILL be a party! If you have questions, call IMCS at (603) 356-7064.

One VERY IMPORTANT thing to be aware of is that all attendees are going to be required to provide proof of vaccination. Unlike some other events, no test results will be permitted. So, be sure to bring your card and picture ID, or you won't be able to participate.

I'm sure you all have seen that there is a new Ice Guide that just came out last week. Well - I have 2 copies hot off the presses that I'm going to give away to 2 random folks who have donated $20 or more to this season's NEClimbs fundraiser that started this October. This contest ends at midnight on Tuesday December 7th and I will announce the winners in the following Thursday's WHITE MOUNTAIN REPORT. Each copies will be signed by the guidebook author, by Rick Wilcox (who is on vacation but I'll grab him when he returns) and by myself.

Once again, PLEASE make a contribution. Any amount is welcome, YES even the $1.08 that someone sent last winter - GO FIGURE! It's easy, just go ON LINE and make your donation via PayPal. You don't even need a PayPal account, you can use almost any credit card. Just click the link below:

Of course you can also contribute via check or money order if you like. Make it out to NEClimbs and send it here:

92 Bow Lane
North Conway, NH 03860

The expenses of the running and maintaining and putting out The White Mountain Report continue all year. PLEASE REMEMBER, it's your contribution that makes this newsletter and the NEClimbs web site viable.

BTW You can see almost all of the Reports on archived from as far back as September of 1999! To get a sense of the popularity of the site, current traffic as of November 3, 2021 on is about 2840 UNIQUE visits a day, generating over 1.5 million monthly "HITS". The White Mountain Report newsletter goes out to over 1,210 subscribers weekly!

Thank you once again for your support...
SOME LOCAL/NATIONAL PANDEMIC STATISTICS AND THOUGHTS: As a country we are rapidly closing in on 800 thousand deaths directly attributed to COVID! By early next year it's almost assured that we will cross the 1 MILLION mark! It doesn't sound like fake news to me folks... And NH is really not doing well. Just look at the numbers below. Overall these numbers are WORSE than last year pre-vaccine! We only have 55% of out population fully vaccinated and have a 7-day positivity rate of 12.4%. Here in Conway we have 65 active cases and our little hospital is getting overcrowded. The State of Vermont yesterday reported the single highest number of hospitalizations they have had since the start of the pandemic. And they have the highest rate of vaccination in this country, over 78% fully vaccinated. The people in the hospitals are almost exclusively unvaccinated! That ain't good IMNSHO...

So what can you do if you're coming up here to go climbing? Getting vaccinated is obviously the #1 thing that will protect you and yours. You'll have to be vaxxed if you plan on coming to Ice Fest in any event. Wear a mask if you're in a store, restaurant, the coffee shop or if you're around groups of people or folks who you don't know if they are vaxxed. These are all things that I do and they certainly help.

I am so tired of this crap, but I do NOT want to get sick, even with a mild case. So anything you can do to help us all get through this is appreciated.

New Hampshire:
5 new deaths reported
1,011 new cases reported
8,048 Active cases
397 patients are currently hospitalized
1,732 total deaths

United States:
Confirmed: 48,695,518
Deaths: 782,106

Confirmed: 263,678,193
Deaths: 5,228,062

The Johns Hopkins COVID-19 tracking map:

I find JHU's Daily COVID-19 Data in Motion report to be very informative. It shares critical data on COVID-19 from the last 24 hours in a short 1 minute animated video format.



I got in two chilly rides this week on my regular mountain bike before getting out the fat tire bike, one at the Marshall and the other one of my go-to local ride from here over through Hales, to Cedar Creek and back through Birch Hill. At that time nothing was slippery on any of the trails, but that may change pretty quickly with this snowfall. If we get any accumulation, it's likely going to be a while before it packs down, so be a bit careful if you're out there.

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

To truly raise the standards of free climbing, you can't sacrifice style or purity for a higher number.
Ron Kauk
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