Trailriders Ascend Mt Washington for Sunrise Ascent- Aug. 5th, 2012

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Feb 1, 2005
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The Matterhorn
I volunteered as a mule for the Adaptive Sports Partners of the North Country, for a Sunrise Ascent of Mt Washington with Team Chester again this year. As many of you know I have known Chester since he was born, so it’s a very important event for me. Chester was born with Cerebral Palsy, but he has never let that slow him down and at 25 years old he enjoys all types of sports thanks to this organization.

Five participants made the trip to the summit of Mt Washington this year, Chester, Bella, Martin, Christian, and Richard with lots of volunteers who pushed, pulled or drove and supported the climbers.

We arrived at the base of the Auto Road at 4:00 AM on Sunday morning August 5th to get the Adaptive athletics loaded into the Trailriders designed for these types of events on & off trail. The smiles from the mules and riders were huge and lots of excitement and laughter (and yawns) as we prepared for the climb. A quick run through of the safety measures for the new mules.

Teams took off as soon as they were ready so we were staggered along the Auto Road going up.
Team Chester started up about 5:00 am with lots of cheers and smiles! (Team Bella, Team Christian, and Team Richard had left earlier) Team Martin was right behind us and we would egg each other on all the way up to the summit.

With almost a full moon there was no need for headlamps as we ascended up. The sun rose just as we came to an opening in the woods so we stopped for a drink and rest break and enjoyed the views.

The weather was warm and humid as we climbed up through the trees. The wind gave us a treat every now and then but I knew that wasn’t going to be such a treat higher up…. As we rounded one corner and climb we were very excited to see the breakfast stop….coffee, donuts, cookies, etc. Thanks to all who bake and supply these treats as it’s a nice anticipation as we climb knowing it will be around one of the corners.. (We were thankful they had it at an earlier spot than last year)!

After a nice break and snacks Team Chester headed out with new energy. The views were perfect as we climbed higher and cheered as we passed each mile marker. A large storm front was approaching with high winds so we kept the pace up and were at the summit around 9:30 am.

After a lift of the Trailrider to the Summit Sign for photos we headed inside for a quick warm up.

Then down to the parking lot we went for a much appreciated breakfast sandwich, coffee, and lots of snacks and drinks. T-shirts were passed out and certificates of accomplishments were given. Chester who was holding a raffle picked a name and the Head of the organization Sandy thanked everyone and announced how appreciative they are for all the volunteers and all that is accomplished through the donations for this event. Lots of extra volunteers gave us mules a welcome ride down.

Everytime I volunteer it reminds me how just one of Chester’s, Bella’s or any of the participants smiles will make any problem you may think you have go away and bring a smile to your face! It’s not about what I get out of the giving part, it’s about what we as a group of volunteers can give to these amazing people, who couldn’t otherwise enjoy the many activities that many of us enjoy all the time.
In Chester’s words: “Participation in adaptive sports gives me a feeling of freedom. It gives me the opportunity to do things I really enjoy. Through adaptive sports I participate rather than be a spectator. When I take part in a new sport it makes me feel excited, just like new adventures”

Rest of photo's.. :

Many of my hiking friends donated for my cause and I want to give them a huge Thank you and appreciation for all the support I am given for my time to this organization.
Adaptive Sports Partners of the North Country Rocks!

God Bless everyone one of you! I've gotta say, it brought a tear to my eye!

I opened this thread ready to be impressed that you got up so early but then I read about Chester and was blown away. I had never heard of this before but it is beyond words levels of amazing. Go Team Chester!
Wonderful story, great effort. Fabulous. Brought goose bumps to me from the joy I saw expressed in the photos and story.
Great work folks. It's bringing tears to my eyes also as I type this.
Job will done. :cool::):D
Thanks for all your kind words and support!!!

Congratulations. That's excellent. I Googled TrailRider and found an interesting article on some of the vehicles available. Great to see them in use ! Thanks for your efforts !

Thanks for the nice link...I also volunteer during the year on off trail hikes with the Trailriders. This organization also do winter hikes with a ski on the trailrider.

East Pond Trail on Father's day with Martin and his family, he has Lou Gehrigs.

This is why I love to volunteer!
11 year old Bella who has Cerebral Palsy ::D
That is totally amazing! Congrats to a tremendous effort to give everyone a chance to enjoy the trails. I've seen adaptive downhill skiing at Waterville, but didn't know adaptive sports extended to the trails, too.