NEClimbs - information for New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont rock and ice climbers
Current conditions in North Conway, NH at 9:59a on 07/01/22 - Temperature: 72.2 °F - Wind speed: 0.0 mph - Wind chill: 72.2 °F - Barometric pressure: 29.869 in - 3 Hour Barometer Trend: Falling Slowly - Humidity: 26 %
BugCON 4: almost too intense for climbing, DEET required
4 out of a possible 5
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June 24, 2021

Hi Folks,

Some weeks are more entertaining than others... I thought this one would be boring, but apparently not so much... In this case we've had rain, brutal heat, and chill. Sound familiar? It's what we have been doing all spring, but now it's summer. And if we're going to be all over the place from here on out, WTF.

I got out with Brad late this afternoon and we ran up Chris Graham and Bob Ahearn's new Whitehorse classic, Creepy Cowboy. I did it several weeks ago with Jeff Lea and I liked it then. This time I liked it more. It's a little run out in places, and you have to be good placing gear, but the climbing is fun. PS - 10' up and left off the 1st belay there is a pocket that takes a perfect black TriCam. Just sayin...

They have a new climb just left of Cowboy that I wanted to do as well. Brad didn't have time today, but it's on my list. Stay tuned...

It turns out that there are 2 types of caterpillars that are infesting New England; the Browntail Moth Caterpillars and the Gypsy Moth Caterpillars. Both are having impacts on trees, tho the Gypsy Moth Caterpillar is worse in that respect. But both can have an unpleasant and potentially dangerous effect on some people who are exposed to the little hairs on the insects. The smaller Browntail caterpillars are almost exclusively over on the Maine coast as far north as DownEast. However the Gypsy caterpillars may be found all over the country.

You just have to look up at Peaked Mt as you drive along the North South Local Road to see the effect of the infestation here in the Valley. Where it was fully green, now you literally can see the bare trees. I walk every morning in my neighborhood and this morning for the first time I saw them on several Birch trees. [sheesh] But what I'm blown away about is I start looking at the blueberry bush flowers and damn if there aren't caterpillars there. [damn]

I found it interesting that the Gypsy moth is not native to North America. It was brought to this country in 1869 by Leopold Trouvelot, a French professor living in Medford, MA. What could possibly go wrong you say? Allegedly attempting to use them for silk production, some escaped and thrived. You can read about it here:

Why am I still talking about this? After all, we're all back to normal - right? Sporting events are at capacity, the Foo Fighters just played to a sold-out Madison Square Garden crowd, bands are back touring, you can eat indoors in most restaurants and coffee shops including the Frontside here in No Co, bands will be playing indoors at Red Parka, IME has stopped requiring masks, you don't see all that many masks on folks here in the Valley and from what I read the number of cases in NH have dropped off the edge of a cliff! Well a couple of reasons actually...

1) The number of cases in the rest of the world aren't dropping all that much.
2) The overall rate of people getting vaccinated in this country have dropped.
3) There is a new variant, the Delta Variant, that's much more transmissible and deadly than the previous ones and it's well on the way to be the dominant one here.
4) While NH is doing OK, many other states are not doing nearly as well. And we are a tourist economy, which means folks from those places are coming here.

That pretty well spells it out... I'm not in any sort of panic mode. But I feel strongly that it's important to be informed. So as Kai Ryssdal says... "Let's do the numbers."

New Hampshire:
0 new death reported
25 new cases reported
353 Active cases
27 patients are currently hospitalized
1,357 total deaths

United States:
Confirmed: 33,578,829
Deaths: 602,838

Confirmed: 179,687,376
Deaths: 3,893,798

The Johns Hopkins COVID-19 tracking 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.



While I have been enjoying riding the Cranmore Bike Park, I needed just a little more a couple of days ago and found something to do that was a tad bit more interesting. So with a couple of good friends we took the the lift at the Bike park, but instead of heading back down we wandered off right. At the service road we pounded uphill, walking a couple of times to be sure, all the way to the top of the Cranmore ski area. At the top of the road there is a sign for the Cranmore Connector which traverses the top of the mountain, eventually connecting to the Black Cap Trail. But along the way there are several signs that alert you to a variety of trails that come downhill, some on the Hurricane Mt Road side, some back to Cranmore. Some are pretty nice hand built trails, others more serious downhill trails. The latter are more than us old-folks want to bite off so we generally ride Red Tail, Kettle Ridge, Hurricane or the newer Knights Connector. Since we didn't want to have to ride all the way back to Cranmore from Hurricane Mt Road, we opted for Knights. To get there you turn left, coming from Cranmore) at the Hurricane Trail System sign and then take the unmarked machine-built trail on the immediate left. You cross both Red Tail and Kettle Ridge, and can eventually see the Cranmore tower through the woods on your left. Somewhere around here is the one steep drop that we all usually walk! The trail continues downhill with some gorgeous burms and sweeps that eventually lead you across 3 obvious ski trails, the first with spectacular views. The 3rd one is Kandahar and you will carefully ride down this, eventually connecting to an obvious road leading left. IMPORTANT NOTE be aware that where you start going down Kandahar, there is a crossing for one of the major downhill trails, Charlie Don't Surf, and people can come FLYING out of the woods on your left there. DO NOT LINGER!!! The aforementioned road takes you all the way back across Cranmore and deposits you back at the top of the Bike Park lift. From there you can take any of the trails back down. Doing this you can get in about 6 miles of riding and 1,000 feet of climbing and the beat up the service road is quite a pump.

Unfortunately, for me, after sitting around chatting and snacking at the intersection of the Cranmore Connector and Hurricane I forgot my Camelback leaning against a tree. [smack my head] I realized it about halfway down Knight's, so there was no easy way for me to go back up to retrieve it. So after we finished back at Cranmore, I drove the car to the top of Hurricane Mt Road and rode up the Black Cap and Connector to get it. In spite of numerous folks coming by, it was right where I'd left it. And hey, I got in another 300' and 1.8 miles for the day. WELL - I slept good that night!

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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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:

Have fun and climb safe,

Al Hospers
The White Mountain Report
North Conway, New Hampshire

The hype pretended that M7, or 8, or 12 for that matter, had never before been climbed un thil the current practitioners rap bolted some overhanging choss heap, rehersed it, climbed it, did photo shoots on it, and treated it as commerce.
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