Mt. Washington Trip Report -12/18/11

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Feb 5, 2009
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Waterville Valley, NH
The forecast called for a high temperature of zero degrees, sunny skies and not much wind. I don't mind coldplay, it's usually high winds and/or blizzard conditions that force me to turn around.

I got started at the Cog Railway base station at 7:30am. I followed footsteps in the snow to now closed Jewell Trail link and found the Ammonoosuc Brook crossing impossible. I then followed the footsteps that led me to cross the brook using the Cog Railway tracks. I have to say I was nervous doing this due to the angle of ascent, snow [hidden ice?] on the wooden rungs and how far apart they were. Once I crossed the brook I followed tracks that bushwhacked back to the main trail. [I found out on my return that the relocation to the Jewell Trail Link is to right of the railroad tracks using a wooden bridge to cross the brook and following blue flagging tape which leads you back on the original Jewell Trail link.] It was 3 degrees when I started.

Once I reached the Jewell Trail I put on MicroSpikes. At treeline there was a slight breeze so I put on a warm layer beneath my shell. A group of four passed me while I was taking a break. Their goal for the day was Mt. Jefferson. There is not enough snow yet to fill in all the crevices between the rocks so sometimes my feet would fall in one of these small holes.

Following the Gulfside Trail, the summit building got larger as I got closer. There was abundant sunshine. It started to get a bit windy and the temperature remained the same at 3 degrees. The trail follows the rim of Great Gulf, with spectacular views looking down into that huge cirque and across to Mts. Jefferson, Adams and Madison. These are some of the finest views in the White Mountains.

At the summit, views extended for miles in all directions. It was 2 below zero with 24 mph winds. This meant the wind chill was 24 below zero! I arrived at 11:45am. It's an eerie sight to see all the rime ice coating the buildings and communication towers. It's really cool. There were about ten people at the summit when I arrived. I took a picture at the summit sign of four people who came from North Carolina. They were very proud of their accomplishment and who can blame them.

I had enough of coldplay and returned the way I came up. I saw a couple of guys ahead of me on the descent but nobody behind me.

Click Here To View Pictures and Slide Show [Press F11 for full effects] >> With music by Coldplay of course!


Aug 27, 2009
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Westbrook ME
I came up Ammo and summited just about the same time. One of the clearest days I've ever been on Washinton summit. What a day!

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