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Thread: Mt Washington Auto Road-Does it Count?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Jim lombard's Avatar
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    Mt Washington Auto Road-Does it Count?

    I've done Washington in all seasons from the traditional route and am hoping to do a winter ascent via the auto-road at night.

    If I needed it for my list, would it count?
    But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles.

    http://www.onchristspath.com/4Kpage.html

  2. #2
    Senior Member Jim lombard's Avatar
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    Thanks Marc,
    I read this from a 1937 National Geographic copy about the White Mts.

    The hiker's line of least resistance is the Carriage Road which loops up the mountain in eighty odd curves. This automobile route to the summit is about twice as long as the hiking trails on the eastern slopes, but many climbers prefer the road, as the grades are less precipitous and there is no danger of losing the way in case of a sudden storm

    Its one of three routes I have left to have hiked it from every trail/road or rr tracks.
    But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles.

    http://www.onchristspath.com/4Kpage.html

  3. #3
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim lombard
    I read this from a 1937 National Geographic copy about the White Mts.

    The hiker's line of least resistance is the Carriage Road which loops up the mountain in eighty odd curves. This automobile route to the summit is about twice as long as the hiking trails on the eastern slopes, but many climbers prefer the road, as the grades are less precipitous and there is no danger of losing the way in case of a sudden storm.
    Actually it is possible to lose the way in poor visibility if the road is drifted in. IIRC, the potential trouble areas are the flats near Nelson and Ball Crags.

    This area is also exposed to the prevailing winds.

    Doug

  4. #4
    Banned Kevin Rooney's Avatar
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    Sorry, Jim, but it won't count. See the FAQ page for more details.

    Washington, Mansfield and Equinox are specifically mentioned on that page.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Mohamed Ellozy's Avatar
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    Kevin,

    My understanding is that you are not allowed to use them to drive to the summit. Makes sense, since that paragraph deals with driving to the trailhead. In other words, you are not allowed to drive up the Auto Road to the parking lot, call it a trailhead, and hike from there to the summit.

    I am almost certain that I am correct, but hope that Eric will give us the official answer.

    Jim,

    I remember reading (maybe in an old WMG) that the auto road can be treacherous (ice and wind) in winter, and that it is not an easy way up the mountain.

  6. #6
    Moderator bikehikeskifish's Avatar
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    The FAQ (rules) says:

    For peaks with trails starting at maintained roads the rule is simple: Drive to the trailhead then walk (note that you are not allowed to use the auto roads on Mts Washington, Mansfield and Equinox).

    The confusion might come from the fact that the (note... not allowed to use auto roads) comes after the word walk.

    I would think, if one can bushwhack up, or take a trail, or the ski trails at Wildcat/Tecumseh, then one could use the auto road.


    Tim
    Bike, Hike, Ski, Sleep. Eat, Fish, Repeat.

  7. #7
    Senior Member giggy's Avatar
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    If you have fun and enjoy yourself - it counts.

  8. #8
    Senior Member blacknblue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by giggy
    If you have fun and enjoy yourself - it counts.
    That's my line of thinking. I don't really care who thinks it is 'official' or not since I'm never planning on getting a badge for going hiking. If I did Big George via the Auto Road in February, I would consider myself having bagged the peak in winter and would have a pretty satisfied conscience that I earned the right to think so.
    "People hardly ever make use of the freedom which they have, for example, freedom of thought; instead they demand freedom of speech as a compensation."
    --Soren Kierkegaard, 1838

  9. #9
    Senior Member grouseking's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by giggy
    If you have fun and enjoy yourself - it counts.

    Agreed. What a silly argument.

    Plus, hiking the auto road would make the hike much longer....possibly making it harder. Just "bushwhack" off the road. Then maybe it will count.

    grouseking

  10. #10
    Senior Member Silverfox's Avatar
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    It would certainly seem be an issue of semantics.
    I would feel pretty good with myself bagging George on foot from the Route 16 Auto Road parking lot in February...Enjoy!!

  11. #11
    Senior Member kltilton's Avatar
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    I did Washington via the Auto Road last February. I had a perfect day weather wise. I would make sure though that if you're going do do this route to make sure that you have VERY good weather. You'll spend over 3.5 miles above tree line if you follow the road.

    Here's the link to my photos from my trip last year:

    http://sports.webshots.com/album/557912429gKNQse

  12. #12
    Moderator bikehikeskifish's Avatar
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    Assuming "counts" means for the AMC4000 club, the AMC 4000 footer club is a game with rules and you are supposed to play by the rules if you want to play the game. This is an interpretation of the rules, just like where the real summit of Owl's Head is.

    It doesn't matter if it feels good or not. If they are picky enough to demand that you not start before the minute of the winter solstice and you must be off the trail before the minute of the spring equinox, then they should be able to rule on this.

    More fuel then... why do the ski trails count... or do they?

    Tim
    Bike, Hike, Ski, Sleep. Eat, Fish, Repeat.

  13. #13
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    They also have a rule on hiking Peak Above the Nubble. If you can find the now several years old illegally cut trail, and use it you can't count the peak for the NEHH list.

  14. #14
    Senior Member cbcbd's Avatar
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    I hear if you hike with one foot on the road and one off the road it counts... but only during even numbered days.
    Doug

  15. #15
    Senior Member RoySwkr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim lombard
    This automobile route to the summit is about twice as long as the hiking trails on the eastern slopes, but many climbers prefer the road, as the grades are less precipitous and there is no danger of losing the way in case of a sudden storm
    I agree with ME and disagree with KR - I believe that it counts if you walk up/down and Gene Daniell would agree but it's not him that makes the rules any more

    <FLAME>It's too bad the 4k club apparently considers its sole mission to be selling patches and holding awards ceremonies, and can't find time to clarify its rules</FLAME>

    I also agree with DP that it is quite possible to get lost in bad conditions on the auto road, one of the sno-cat drivers who'd driven it hundreds of times was lost for several hours once when he got out to search for the road

    Hiking it at night in winter _may_ be technically illegal if you need a trail pass which aren't valid at night, not that that has ever stopped anybody :-)
    http://greatglentrails.com/Winter-Page-305.html

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