Ascent of Mount Washington on 2009-07-28

Climber: Spencer Corcoran

Date:Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Mount Washington
    Location:USA-New Hampshire
    Elevation:6288 ft / 1916 m

Ascent Trip Report

After spending some time warming up on lower mountains, I finally attempted to tackle the highest point in the Northeast.

My dad and I started on the Tuckerman Ravine Trail early in the morning. The trail started out with a low grade, and when it passed some stream/waterfall, the grade immeadiately increased. We took many breaks on my part. It was wet and foggy, so we couldn't see from the trail. The trail weaved through woods to the halfway house.

The halfway house had bathrooms, shelter, and other things. On the front wall was a chart showing the elevation of the hut, and other points along the trail. We took a bathroom break and decided to continue on, despite the weather. Some people at the hut were thinking about turning back.

The trail passed by vegetation protection areas, and then started to ascend the headwall of Tuckerman Ravine. It was quite steep and slippery. There were no views from the ravine, but there was a waterfall that was impressive. There was also a large chunk of ice and snow in it. After about 1,800 feet of climbing, the trail exited Tuckerman Ravine and made the final push to the summit.

The wind picked up, and as a result, we had to hide behind cairns periodically. I was wondering how much further we had to go, but that was answered when I heard the sound of ATVs.

The wind was at its fastest at the summit. There was a stairway that, for some reason, was very difficult to ascend. We walked up them and went into the summit building to get something to eat and drink, and we later sent postcards.

We later prepared to go back down. We had hiked for a few minutes, and I had even got a video clip, but my feet started to ache badly, and that combined with bad weather and a fear of going back down Tuckerman Ravine in that weather (which was made worse because of hearing about a hiker who perished on the mountain not long before we hiked it) made me want to go back to the summit and catch a shuttle down. We managed to get one, and the hike went from feat to feat/failure.

I got redemption for this hike by hiking up AND down Mount Washington in 2011.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:4300 ft / 1310 m
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:4300 ft / 1310 m
    Distance:4.2 mi / 6.8 km
    Route:Tuckerman Ravine Trail
    Start Trailhead:Pinkham Notch visitor center  1988 ft / 605 m
Descent Statistics

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