We’re barely into spring, yet this year — thanks to an extremely thin snowpack and a generally warmer average temperature — the typical springtime dangers are already making themselves known, as if spring is in full swing (which apparently it is). Let’s looks at some of the more common springtime hazards.
You may have been tossing the idea around, perhaps debating with yourself — you know, about climbing Mt Washington in the winter. Maybe you’ve been wondering if you have what it takes, physically and mentally. Perhaps you’ve had concerns about the mountain’s well-documented dangers (it is one of the deadliest mountains in the world, after-all). But here you are, maybe you’ve done it already: you’ve clicked the button and registered for your winter climb. Now what? What’s next? This guide is meant to help you answer those questions, and more.
This is a copy of an essay submitted to the Green Mountain Club. It is one of the club’s requirements for anyone applying for an End-to-Enders certificate — an honor and acknowledgement for completing a thru-hike of Vermont’s Long Trail, whether it be done by sections or all-at-once the way we did. I undertook this hike, northbound, with my good friend, Bill Robichaud, from September 17 through October 6, 2015. This essay is meant to share just some of the highlights of our amazing journey.
In 2014 I took a trip out west with the aim of climbing three significant mountains with Northeast Mountaineering (the NH-based outfitter I guide for): Hood, Rainier, and Shuksan. The trip was a success and two of those peaks — Hood and Rainier — were climbed again less than a year later. We climbed in July last year, but in June this year. Changes were noted as a result of this and other factors. Some of the changes were significant. And that is the inspiration for this article.
The training is done, the gear packed, and the stoke is on… all is ready. Sure, the forecast could be better, as often is the case on the deceptive 6288′ Mt Washington — the highest point in the Northeast and notorious for its extreme weather — but the winds should remain less than hurricane force and the ambient temperatures might actually top out above zero. It’s a go.