NEClimbs - information for New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont rock and ice climbers
Current conditions in North Conway, NH at 5:00p on 02/26/21 - Temperature: 28.9 °F - Wind speed: 0.0 mph - Wind chill: 28.9 °F - Barometric pressure: 30.352 in - 3 Hour Barometer Trend: Rising Rapidly - Humidity: 18 %
IceCON 4. Climbs are IN at the usual places and generally at consensus ratings.
4 out of a possible 5
the American Alpine ClubEquinox Guiding Service LLCFriends Of The LedgesThe ACCESS Fund, Protect America's ClimbingMooney Mountain Guides
S U B S C R I B E
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February 4, 2021

Hi Folks,

I try to get in some amount of climbing every week, and try my best to do different things. I really hate to do the same climbs over and over, just like I hate playing the same tunes in the same way repeatedly. I guess that's why I prefer to play in jazz groups instead of classic rock. [LOL]

So on Monday I got out climbing with Matt Bowman. I'd heard that Unicorn on Cathedral Ledge had been done recently, so that seemed like a reasonable objective. We weren't sure that the ram p-access to the main ledge was climbable, so we did Thresher and then walked along the edge of the cliff to the big trees above the Unicorn ledge. From the top the ice looked pretty good so I rapped first down to the bug snow-covered ledge and the Raising The Roof 2 bolt anchor on the left. As I rapped I spotted a couple of screw holes; one about 1/3 of the way from the bottom and the other halfway in between that one and the bottom of the corner. Both were in crappy ice and obviously went into air! Not at all a good sign IMO. Matty rapped and noticed them as well. I had wanted to lead it, but we both thought it wasn't in good enough shape for anything other than a TR. When he climbed you could hear up to at least the halfway point the ice wasn't bonded and it felt fragile. I took a run as well and tho it was a fun TR, it would have been a pretty desperate lead iMO. Here's a few pics...

http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_0.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_1.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_2.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_3.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_4.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_5.jpg

I was thinking of climbing something after I took the pictures for today. However there was a LOT of snow out there so I decided to take a little hike down to the start of Shoestring for a change. You park at the place where the AT crosses the road, walk across road to the AT trailhead, cross the bridge and continue to the intersection of the Mt Webster Trail and the Saco River Trail that goes left to the Willey House. There was about a foot of fresh snow on the trail and I noticed that there were no tracks on the Webster Trail. You follow the blue blazes until you see a tall boulder on the left with an arrow pointing left. To get to Shoestring you continue straight and slightly uphill. This is not marked, but often the trail is packed out. In 100 yards or so you turn gradually uphill and the start of Shoestring Gully will be right there. This is about 3/4 of a mile from the road.

It was a really nice walk in the woods and I took a short diversion on the way back to step out into an open area on the right to get a panorama shot of Crawford Notch. Here's a few pictures...

http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_1.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_2.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_3.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_4.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_5.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_6.jpg

Just a heads up to anyone going out over the next couple of days...we got 8-10" of snow here in the Valley and there was a lot more in Notches.

1) The town plowed the Cathedral Ledge Road to the first little kiosk at the turn and bermed it at that point. So if you're going to climb at the North End, be aware that you're going to have to walk all the way down the road.

2) When I was up at Black Pudding last Wednesday, I saw the remains of a pretty good sized slough avalanche just below the ice-slab approach. I've noticed this other times I've been up there. Today I drove by and stopped to have a quick look and could see where the snow had sloughed from the upper gully and down over the pillar.

Just saying that there is a lot of snow everywhere & you should be aware.
Ice Conditions Report:
Selected Ice Conditions effective February 25, 2021
It really does feel a little more like mid-March than late February right now, tho this really has to do with a couple of sunny days with temps in the 40's. Of course that's not really a bad thing, as long as it stays cool at night and we don't get any rain. But stay tuned... In general tho the ice is in good shape right now, with a few exceptions where the climbs have been in full sun over the past couple of warm days. The thing to be aware of is that there are places where the ice is punky and snowcone-like or has become undermined. But as long as you are paying attention, you'll be OK. Frankly early to mid-March is really my favorite time to climb. There's nothing like those longer days, more moderate temps and plastic ice. And the occasional warm day when you can get out on some warm early-season rock! What's not to like?
Huntington Ravine IN  
Repentance questionable Click to see route picture.
Standard Route IN Click to see route picture.
Dracula IN fat Click to see route picture.
For the full current conditions report, CLICK HERE

I try to get in some amount of climbing every week, and try my best to do different things. I really hate to do the same climbs over and over, just like I hate playing the same tunes in the same way repeatedly. I guess that's why I prefer to play in jazz groups instead of classic rock. [LOL]

So on Monday I got out climbing with Matt Bowman. I'd heard that Unicorn on Cathedral Ledge had been done recently, so that seemed like a reasonable objective. We weren't sure that the ram p-access to the main ledge was climbable, so we did Thresher and then walked along the edge of the cliff to the big trees above the Unicorn ledge. From the top the ice looked pretty good so I rapped first down to the bug snow-covered ledge and the Raising The Roof 2 bolt anchor on the left. As I rapped I spotted a couple of screw holes; one about 1/3 of the way from the bottom and the other halfway in between that one and the bottom of the corner. Both were in crappy ice and obviously went into air! Not at all a good sign IMO. Matty rapped and noticed them as well. I had wanted to lead it, but we both thought it wasn't in good enough shape for anything other than a TR. When he climbed you could hear up to at least the halfway point the ice wasn't bonded and it felt fragile. I took a run as well and tho it was a fun TR, it would have been a pretty desperate lead iMO. Here's a few pics...

http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_0.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_1.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_2.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_3.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_4.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Unicorn_5.jpg

I was thinking of climbing something after I took the pictures for today. However there was a LOT of snow out there so I decided to take a little hike down to the start of Shoestring for a change. You park at the place where the AT crosses the road, walk across road to the AT trailhead, cross the bridge and continue to the intersection of the Mt Webster Trail and the Saco River Trail that goes left to the Willey House. There was about a foot of fresh snow on the trail and I noticed that there were no tracks on the Webster Trail. You follow the blue blazes until you see a tall boulder on the left with an arrow pointing left. To get to Shoestring you continue straight and slightly uphill. This is not marked, but often the trail is packed out. In 100 yards or so you turn gradually uphill and the start of Shoestring Gully will be right there. This is about 3/4 of a mile from the road.

It was a really nice walk in the woods and I took a short diversion on the way back to step out into an open area on the right to get a panorama shot of Crawford Notch. Here's a few pictures...

http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_1.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_2.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_3.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_4.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_5.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Shoestring_6.jpg

Just a heads up to anyone going out over the next couple of days...we got 8-10" of snow here in the Valley and there was a lot more in Notches.

1) The town plowed the Cathedral Ledge Road to the first little kiosk at the turn and bermed it at that point. So if you're going to climb at the North End, be aware that you're going to have to walk all the way down the road.

2) When I was up at Black Pudding last Wednesday, I saw the remains of a pretty good sized slough avalanche just below the ice-slab approach. I've noticed this other times I've been up there. Today I drove by and stopped to have a quick look and could see where the snow had sloughed from the upper gully and down over the pillar.

Just saying that there is a lot of snow everywhere & you should be aware. http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/CathedralLedge.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Repentance_Remission.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Diagonal_Mordor.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Frankenstein.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/LHMonkeyWrench.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/MtWebster_slabs.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/MtWillard.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/MtWillard_UpperTier.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Gully_1.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/MtWillard_trees.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/RearWindow.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/BraggPheasant.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Deidre.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/machine.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/standardRoute_2.jpg

As always the full set of pictures are on Facebook and NEClimbs.

AVALANCHE ACCIDENT:
A skier was killed in an accident in the Ammonoosuc Ravine on Monday and not found until Wednesday. Interestingly this was not related to the storm, which didn't happen until Tuesday afternoon/evening and the published avalanche danger at that time was only Moderate. You can read the details here:

https://vtskiandride.com/backcountry-skier-killed-in-new-hampshire-avalanche/

SOME LOCAL/NATIONAL PANDEMIC THOUGHTS:
On March 2nd New Hampshire identified its first case of COVID-19! That was a watershed moment for all of us, here in NH, in the country and of course all over the world. It's been a real mess. On the good side we have a vaccine and shots are going into peoples arms right now. As an old dude, I personally have a vaccination date scheduled for the middle of February. While that won't make me feel great about playing music in a bar for the time being, it will hopefully keep me from getting very sick in case I get infected. Obviously the goal is to get as many people vaccinated as is possible. I hope that happens. I'm not at all sure that things will return to the way they were pre-COVID during my lifetime, but perhaps we can get close. I'd sure like to feel good about getting out climbing with a group of friends, sharing a meal together and maybe playing music again with my friends.

Thank you...

New Hampshire:
9 new deaths reported
721 new cases reported
1,085 deaths total
4,099 Active cases
209 patients are currently hospitalized

US:
Confirmed Cases: 26,671,333
Total Deaths: 455,555

Global:
Confirmed Cases: 104,827,177
Total Deaths: 2,281,408

The Johns Hopkins COVID-19 tracking map:

https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/us-map

I find JHU's Daily COVID-19 Data in Motion report to be very informative. It shares critical data on COVID-19 from the last 24 hours in a short 1 minute animated video format.

https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/covid-19-daily-video

WEAR A MASK, SANITIZE AND STAY PHYSICALLY DISTANT FRIENDS!

REMEMBER - WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER

VALLEY CYCLING:
Prior to the big snow on Tuesday the trails in the Valley were great. However, the 8" or so we got have pretty much shut things down for the time being. It's going to be a while for them to get packed out by the snow machines and hikers so the riding gets back to what it was, even with the fat bike. In the meantime here's a few pics from last weekend and Monday. Enjoy...

http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Bike_1.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Bike_2.jpg
http://www.neclimbs.com/wmr_pix/20210204/Bike_3.jpg

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:

http://www.neclimbs.com/mobile

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

NEClimbs & White Mountain Report On Facebook:
Join us and LIKE us on Facebook. I'll try and post some interesting pix every Thursday and the latest Ice Report in the season, tho certainly not the whole Report. Here's where you can check it out:

http://www.facebook.com/NEClimbs/

Have fun and climb safe,

Al Hospers
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire


Naked male sport climbers? No! I want naked male trad hogs! Pushing 50 or over, very hairy chest and back, front tooth missing (no dental insurance), wrinkled yellow toenail fungus, sunburnt dome with long gray ponytail (sparse curls will do), fingers the size of Polish sausages, torn-off nipples due to offwidth damage... Now there's a man, an image to behold, every climber chick's dream. And when he says: 'Hey, honey, wanna do the DNB?' you just melt into a heap of adoring lard.
Inez Drixelius
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