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Thread: Moosilauke Summit Sign Gone

  1. #1
    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Moosilauke Summit Sign Gone

    There was a post on The Hiking The 4000 Footers Facebook group that the classic summit sign atop summit of Moosilauke was gone, post and all. Anyone know if there would have been some sort of legitimate maintenance that would be the reason for this? I wouldn't have thought they'd remove everything includding the pole and all but it also seems unlikely someone would have yanked the whole thing out and stolen it. At least I certainly hope not. That is probably one of the most recognizable signs in the Whites.

    If anyone has any local knowledge explaining the missing sign I'd be curious to know. No one on the Facebook group has a explanation.

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    Senior Member TJsName's Avatar
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    Last time I saw it was with Tim. Perhaps he took it as a Single Season Winter 48 memento?
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    Senior Member summitseeker's Avatar
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    That would be a sin, with a capital "S" if someone did in fact make off with the iconic sign.


    With the post being gone as well we arrive at two most likely scenarios.

    1). The sign and post are both being replaced by legitimate personnel. However, why would they remove the sign and post without replacing it?

    2). D-Bags have made off with it. In their haste they took the whole kit and kaboodle below tree line, removed the sign, tossed the post, and have incurred bad karma forever.

    Or, lastly, it was the work of aliens.

    With a serious lack of cows to abduct above tree line and having reached the maximum amount of knowledge that can be gained by probing they have opted for a new means of analyzing our planet. IMHO

    Just a thought...

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    Senior Member Scubahhh's Avatar
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    Moderator David Metsky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scubahhh View Post
    Doc Benton?
    The Good Doctor never seemed to have a thing for signs. Buildings on the other hand...

    Put in a call to the DOC in Hanover and let them know. I can't imagine a reason for taking down the 4x4 post (I remember hauling that up there, it's pressure treated and weighs a ton) but the sign is replaced on occasion. The sign didn't look to be in bad shape last time I saw it so I don't know if that's likely.
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    Senior Member RoySwkr's Avatar
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    The USFS has been removing summit signs as fast as they can, even though this violates Appalachian Trail signing guidelines. Dartmouth owns the summit, so they perhaps control the existence of this particular sign and should know if removal was legitimate. If non-approved, I consider it more likely to be a pseudo-environmentalist than a souvenir hunter.

  7. #7
    Moderator bikehikeskifish's Avatar
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    Cabot's sign was gone in mid-March, come to think of it... And no, I didn't take the Moosilauke sign, and confirm it was there on 3/19.

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  8. #8
    Senior Member sdways01's Avatar
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    I was there Thursday and both the sign and post are missing from the summit. At the Glencliff/South Peak Spur/Carriage Road junction... the South peak sign was on the ground just into the trees, the post on the Carriage Road had no signs on it, but one was on the ground (looks like two belong on the post), and there was also a seemingly random post stood up in the trees next to the South Peak spur that has had a sign on it in the past but nothing right now.

    The south peak spur sign matched up with a hole in a small tree (based on the arrow on the sign) and I put that back in place the best I could without tools. The sign on the ground if I recall looked like it had broken and fell. That post looks like it has had a second sign on it as well, but I didn't see one. With the seemingly random post in the trees, I assumed some sign maintenance was going on, but it snowed to early or things haven't melted enough for them to finish. Maybe this post is the post for the summit sign?

    I didn't think to take any pictures of those signs while I was there.
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    Senior Member nartreb's Avatar
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    As of a week before Tim was there, the summit sign was losing the last of its paint but otherwise undamaged; the glencliff/south peak/carriage road signs had no significant defects that I can recall.

    http://www.davidalbeck.com/photos/moosetime.html

    This is not likely to be related to official maintenance.

    It's a long walk from the summit to the south peak spur with a heavy post; maybe someobdy planned to take the whole thing home but got tired and took the other signs instead.

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    Senior Member Guthook's Avatar
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    Sectionhiker.com has a post this morning about the missing sign and mentions many of the summit cairns have been knocked over.

    I don't see why anyone would speculate that the Forest Service did this-- you could just ask them, but knocking cairns over doesn't seem like a FS kind of thing. At the very least, has anyone brought this up to the Dartmouth Outing Club or Forest Service to make sure they're aware?
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    Moderator David Metsky's Avatar
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    So I called my friend at the DOC and he was confirmed that they didn't take any actions. He thought this might have to do with the Forest Service standardizing all the signs along the AT and he was going to call them to find out what's up. He knew that those signs were going away but thought the FS would coordinate with the DOC.
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    Senior Member TCD's Avatar
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    I haven't been these peaks, but take a look at earlier threads about the routes up Owls Head - knocking over cairns is very much a Forest Service activity.

  13. #13
    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TCD View Post
    I haven't been these peaks, but take a look at earlier threads about the routes up Owls Head - knocking over cairns is very much a Forest Service activity.
    Isn't that only because Owl's Head is an unofficial trail and they are supposed to discourage use of unapproved trails? Moosilauke is clearly different I think.

    I hadn't heard about the cairns. Certainly sounding like vandalism at this point. Does this happen often in the mountains? Only recently been following hiking forums so I'm new to having access to the kind of info available here. I'm hoping this is an isolated case.
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  14. #14
    Member thegibba's Avatar
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    Owls head is in a wilderness area. That's why they knock the cairns down over there. The moose is not a wilderness area. I thought DOC was in charge of maintenance on the moose. I don't quite see why the forest service would bother messing with cairns and signs there. The cairns are also a safety issue. I do remember signs being posted somewhere (I forget where. Possibly Acadia) that existing ones should not be altered and new ones not be built.

  15. #15
    Moderator David Metsky's Avatar
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    While the land on Moosilauke is Dartmouth owned and maintained, the AT is a special case. The FS has authority to mandated standards and enforce them. The FS have decided to standardize signs all along the AT and that may explain their removal. It was planned and discussed with the DOC but the logistics weren't finalized yet. But all those signs were planned to be replaced.

    There is no reason that I know of that would explain knocking down cairns up there - they meet all the trail maintenance guidelines.
    You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself, any direction you choose. -- Dr. Seuss

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