NEClimbs - information for New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont rock and ice climbers
Current conditions in North Conway, NH at 10:29a on 07/01/22 - Temperature: 76.3 °F - Wind speed: 0.0 mph - Wind chill: 76.3 °F - Barometric pressure: 29.855 in - 3 Hour Barometer Trend: Falling Slowly - Humidity: 23 %
BugCON 4: almost too intense for climbing, DEET required
4 out of a possible 5
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April 30, 2015

Hi Folks,

While we are most certainly moving into Spring, Mother Nature sure has been taking her time about it. The weather has been bouncing back and forth from bluebird to dreary, often in a single day, and this morning was a good example. As is the case on occasion, my 15 year old missed the school bus this morning and I had to drive him across town to the HS at 7am. When I got up it was full-on blue sky without a single cloud to be seen. However my deck and street was wet, obviously from a shower that must have happened a mere few hours earlier. Strangely there was no indication of any rain in town. Go figure!

I had plans to go climbing on Whitehorse at 11:30 and by 11 the skies were clouded over and to the North it really looked like it would rain. SHEESH Iíve been riding the bikes so much and I havenít been climbing so I was excited about getting out with my friends Joe & Judy Perez. We went out last week to Humphreyís but since they are leaving for Greece soon, this would likely be our last time to get out together for a month. Weíre getting a bit tired of Humphreyís, so I suggested going over to Echo Roof for a bit of a change. It dries pretty quickly, so we figured it would be a good option. When we met in the climberís lot at the Hotel there was only one other car there. Fortunately there was only a fairly small amount of packed snow left at the base of the cliff and we only had to walk over it for a short distance. That said there was a TON of dried leaves on the trail up to Echo Roof, making the walk-in a little treacherous in places - especially on the log ladder leading up to right below the roof!


We were happy to see that the rock was totally dry, with no seepage anywhere. Maybe it didnít rain at the cliff, who knows? Regardless, we got in 4 different lines including Holy Land and Return to Innocence and it was all good. It was the prefect thing to for the morning.


Several folks I know have been out over the past few days. Someone did Cormier/Magness on the far right side of Whitehorse and another did Recompense on Cathedral. Both got glowing reports. Iím sure that the South Buttress of Whitehorse and the Thin Air face are just as good. However, I would still stay away from the North End of Cathedral. There is still a lot of ice on the big slab, right of the cracks, and that tells me that there will also be a fair amount of ice up on the Unicorn Ledge just above. We need some more rain to clear that stuff off before itís fully safe.
Cycling Notes:
Iím thinking that since there seems to be a pretty good crossover between climbers and cyclists, and because I do a lot of riding in the woods and on the road, I would mention something about the riding in the area every week. This week I figured I would mention Pinkham B a.k.a. Dolly Copp Road up ni Gorham. I have to take my wifeís car up to Berlin City Motors for maintenance a couple of times a year, usually in spring and fall. Since I have no interest in sitting in their customer room for 2 hours or so, I always bring my bike & go for a ride. Often I will go up Gorham Hill on Rt 2, detour up to the top of Randolph Hill, take Dolly Copp across to Rt 16 below the Mt Washington Auto Road and then back down to Gorham. I always make a stop at the White Mountain Cafe,my friend Matty Bowmanís place, for a coffee and snack. That alone is a nice 21 mile ride with about 2500í of climbing thrown in.

This time the road was muddier than usual, at least partly because someone had actually driven their truck up there when the road was soft! [sigh] There were only two places where I had to walk through a snow patch or particularly muddy place. Unfortunately there was one place where I thought I could power through on the right and it didnít work out all that good. There was a ditch on the right, about 2í deep, with pouring water and mud. Iíd been having a bit of an issue getting my right foot out of my clips all morning, but I didnít think it would be a problem. That was Ďtill I came to a full stop and couldnít unclip! I tried to fall left into the road, but as you might well expect I fell to the right - right into the rushing stream, on my back and still clipped in! Tho it seemed like forever, it probably took me less than a minute to drag myself out of the stream, but of course I was thoroughly soaked. Worse, my iPhone in my back jacket pocket got wet. I took off the jacket, pulled out my dripping phone and immediately turned it off. I was already 3/4 of the way to the top and the road was now fully dry, so I just kept on to the top and then down the short steep section to Rt 16 and the campground. Usually I would ride uphill to the top of Pinkham or at least the Auto Road, but since I was wet I headed back. Fortunately the car was ready so I could just head right home. I put my phone into a box of rice to suck the water out and it has seemingly recovered without any adverse effects. That will teach me to always put it in a ziploc baggie when I go riding.


Always an adventure, aye?

Instant Bug Report - BugCON 0:
There are some bugs flying around, and some sure look like blackflies to me. Fortunately they arenít biting, so thatís a blessing. Iím wondering if weíre going to have much of a blackfly crop this year, mainly because itís been so dry. I wonít be too unhappy about that, but Iíll bet that the tick population will be serious. Stay vigilant about that folks.

Mobile Version Of NEClimbs:
Up on one of the Mount Washington Valley's finest crags and want to know what that climb you're looking at is? Or maybe you're on your way up from Boston and want to check out the Ice Report for your upcoming weekend plans. Or more likely, you're at work just want to daydream about your next adventure. Well if you have a smart phone handy, you can get to NEClimbs from anywhere you have cell service. While it doesn't offer every single feature of the site and it's not an "app", in mobile form, it does do a whole lot and is very useful. Here is the live link to the mobile version of NEClimbs:

Check it out and if you have issues on your specific phone, please feel free to let me know.

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Have fun and climb safe,

Al Hospers
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire

I was once bouldering in solitude in the Needles, when a young female walked up and introduced herself and asked who I was. I told her and continued bouldering. She turned and walked away after a few minutes, saying over her shoulder: 'you can't be John Gill. He climbs much better than that'.
John Gill
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