NEClimbs - information for New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont rock and ice climbers
Current conditions in North Conway, NH at 4:59p on 04/02/20 - Temperature: 40.8 °F - Wind speed: 1.0 mph - Wind chill: 39.3 °F - Barometric pressure: 29.430 in - 3 Hour Barometer Trend: Falling Slowly - Humidity: 80 %
IceCON 0. Minimal ice available for the hard core and mixed aficionados!
0 out of a possible 5
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March 25, 2010

Hi Folks,

Well this week sure feels a lot more like Fall than Spring. One day snow, another sun and yet another a mix of both! Cold, warm, balmy...who knows from day to day. Tuesday it poured rain all day and night, yesterday it was cold and raw all day and even spitting snow in the morning. People told me that there was even 3+ inches of snow up in Pinkham Notch in the morning. Then when I woke up this morning it is totally bluebird. Time to see just how much I can cram into a day and still get home in time to make dinner for the family! [grin]

I've been trying to get in one of those elusive 4-sport-days that only happen at the beginning or end of winter. I really should have done it last week, but there were other things going on and it didn't happen, so I figured I'd better get it today or it wasn't going to happen this season. As usual I waited 'till the last minute and when I called around this morning I couldn't find anyone to climb rock with. [sigh] Well I figured that I could still manage a 3-sport-day, and that wasn't too shabby.

I loaded up the van with skis, ice gear and my bike and left the house around 9:30 heading up to Crawford Notch. I figured there had to be ice left to climb up there for sure and it turns out that I wasn't wrong...Willies actually looked pretty reasonable. I decided I'd get the ice out of the way first, hopefully before it was too warm. The trail looked as if no one had been up there this week, but it still was in good shape. I only postholed one or two times the whole way up. I had a snack in the sun, drank some Gatorade and headed up. Needless to say it was a lot like a snowcone in most places and there was a lot of snow, making it less like ice climbing and more like a slog. But it still was entertaining. There was a hole up near the very top with running water and a few cracks here and there, but overall it was fine. Even the walk-off trail wasn't too bad. The only hassle was the soft snow that kept balling up even with bot-plates on my crampons. Back at my pack I ate my chicken-sandwich and then walked back down to the van. I didn't see a soul up there.

looking up at Willies
looking down from the top of Willies
water at the top of Willies
looking up the Notch

Back at the van I drove back down to the Willey House and unloaded the bike. Checking the temperature it was 52! AMAZING...I changed into my bike gear and headed back up the Notch. There was a lot of salt on my side of the road in the bike-lane. Very annoying, but other than that the road was clear. I got to the top and continued down to Mt. Clinton Road to see if there was still enough snow up there to ski. Turns out there was still a lot of snow up there. On the way back I stopped at the top of the Notch to check out Elephant Head, which was certainly toast. Then I flew back down to the van, and changed out of the bike regalia and headed up the Notch in the van.

Elephant Head with bike

As I pulled into Mt Clinton Road there was a beautiful fox on the side of the road. I stopped to take a picture and as long as I sat there he just stood by the side of the road and looked at me. It was very cool! I parked right in front of the gate, pulled out the skis and headed down the road. There was a lot of snow but it was very soft and thus I was slow. I skied about a half hour out and turned around. That was enough for me for one day and I packed the skis back in the van and headed back home. As I rode by Humphrey's I realized that if I had brought my rock shoes I could have done some bouldering and that would have given me my goal. Oh well...I have something to strive for next year. fox on Mt. Clinton Rd
xc skis at Mt. Clinton Road

Tho the Ice Report is officially over I will say that Willies probably will be OK for a while longer as will Shoestring. Temps are supposed to drop for the next couple of days and that will help. I did look at Standard and though it looked bad and wasn't too excited about Dracula either. The best ice is likely to be up on Mt Washington for the rest of this season. I'm thinking rock and looking forward to the South Buttress early next week.

Enjoy your spring...
Ice Conditions Report:
Selected Ice Conditions effective March 27, 2020
The ice is done and I am no longer issuing reports. I had someone text me personally asking about the status of ice in the Ravines. Even if I know something, I am no longer going to answer those questions. IMO it is irresponsible to be climbing, other than maybe on a top-rope at this time. I know it's beautiful out there right now. I GET IT! But climbing is generally a group, or at least duo, activity. Everyone touches everything. And if I touch something of yours, that means I have touched everything that you have come in contact with for the past 14 days. I love climbing and the group dynamic as much as anyone, but climbing right now is simply not worth the risk. You simply cannot guarantee that you are 100% safe and put everyone in jeopardy.
Huntington Ravine OUT  
Repentance OUT  
Standard Route OUT Click to see route picture.
Dracula OUT Click to see route picture.
For the full current conditions report, CLICK HERE

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Have fun and climb safe,

Al Hospers
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire

There is no difference between religion and politics. Both involve lies and fanatical beliefs that generaly defy logic... Just like rock climbing.
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