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View Full Version : Ammo to the Summit..a dream realized



lwa11
10-06-2007, 07:32 AM
I finally did it!!! I have always been fascinated with the mountain and remember sitting on the Western Promenade in Portland looking out at the white mountain. It seemed to call to me and I remember the days of a child's fantasy about the adventures on the white beast called Mount Washington. As I grew older I still wondered what it was like and the urge to climb it lingered, festered. I began hiking a little over a year ago and this WAS the goal for me. To realize a dream that had thus far been unfulfilled. Now it is fulfilled.

The pictures can be found at the link below. It starts with a few foliage shots from the drive to Ammo.

http://public.fotki.com/lwa11/2007places/october-2007/10-5-07-mount-washington/

KD Talbot
10-06-2007, 09:04 AM
You finally did it! Nice going! Looks like you had a crystal clear day! Nice shots!
KDT

Steve M
10-06-2007, 09:19 AM
I finally did it!!! I have always been fascinated with the mountain and remember sitting on the Western Promenade in Portland looking out at the white mountain. It seemed to call to me and I remember the days of a child's fantasy about the adventures on the white beast called Mount Washington. As I grew older I still wondered what it was like and the urge to climb it lingered, festered. I began hiking a little over a year ago and this WAS the goal for me. To realize a dream that had thus far been unfulfilled. Now it is fulfilled.

The pictures can be found at the link below. It starts with a few foliage shots from the drive to Ammo.

http://public.fotki.com/lwa11/2007places/october-2007/10-5-07-mount-washington/
Good for you, man. Now you can start planning trips up some of the other trails that lead you to the top. Nice pics!

lwa11
10-06-2007, 09:33 AM
It was a crystal clear day. I could not have asked for a better one.

Brad
10-06-2007, 02:40 PM
What a wonderful day and a great personal achievement. The mountain is a very pretty spot and you certainly saw it at its "best". Wait till you see some nasty weather - you will still love it.

Your pictures are great.

lwa11
10-06-2007, 03:07 PM
I have been pretty lucky with weather in the Whites so far and I am sure living only a couple hours away has helped.

I am excited to see it though in other conditions. I was thinking of maybe an overnight at the Observatory this winter but we shall see. One heck of a good week for me though.

Gorque
10-06-2007, 08:03 PM
Congraulations! :)
Nice pictures as well. It looks like you had a superb day!

Maksutov
10-08-2007, 12:50 AM
Congratulations on your achievement! Realizing a dream is a wonderful thing!

BTW, did you climb Tucks and then hike the crossover to the Lakes before summiting? That seems to be the sequence.

The pictures are outstanding. You lucked out with a beautiful autumn New England day. I've climbed Mt. Washington eight times, and only twice was the weather such as you enjoyed.

It makes my heart hurt, as a New England exile condemned to Mississippi, to look at pictures such as this (http://images22.fotki.com/v757/photos/1/1073498/5464798/100407mtwashington005-vi.jpg?1191643826). But I'd rather visit the place I'd love to be by photograph than not at all.

Thank you for the pictures, and keep climbing!

Brad
10-08-2007, 07:47 AM
Lloyd, when you go into the album looking at the thumbnails you have an option on the left to "Rearrange photos". I select "Filename Alphabetic" and then ascending. If the file names are from the digital camera the pictures will be in sequence as you took them. Then you can do a manual rearrangement to move a specific picture like that cool pano up to be first.

lwa11
10-08-2007, 09:59 AM
Got ya Brad. Thanks for the tip.

I went up the Ammo the whole way.

My wife has talke dof wanting to move near her family in PA but I am just not sure I can leave all of this behind.

Charlie
10-08-2007, 07:35 PM
Got ya Brad. Thanks for the tip.

I went up the Ammo the whole way.

My wife has talke dof wanting to move near her family in PA but I am just not sure I can leave all of this behind.


where in pa are they i'm in lancaster co

lwa11
10-08-2007, 09:58 PM
lititz pa

I have not visited there yet but her parents and sister live there. Her brother lives in dover delaware. They are all from Maine but left in about 1990.

lwa11
10-08-2007, 10:01 PM
A Dream Realized


Snow covered but looming large on the horizon Mount Washington always
stood out to me as a boy. I looked with amazement at the white mysterious mound
among the greenery all around it. A dream began.

I would often find myself stopping on the Western Promenade in
Portland to view Mount Washington. On a clear day it was easy to see
and on other days it was just a shadowy figure in the distance. The
mountain was
always with me though and provided some place for
my mind to wander even on the darkest days. Dreams and fantasy of
wizards and dragons, gladiators and lions, and much more occupied my
mind as I grew up. The themes changed, but in the end the mountain was
always the same in my dreams. A place of dreams, a place of fantasy, a
place of mystery, and a place of death. The roles I played varied from
an explorer, to a mountain climber, to a hero and yes sometimes even a
villain. To me Hercules and Zeus where frequent visitors to the
mountain and on sad days I often imagined sitting on top of Mount
Washington whispering to God who was now not far away at all.

I would wonder as young boys do if I could touch the sun, rope the
moon, or catch a falling star from the top of a place like Mount
Washington. Could I see forever from up there? Would I see an angel?
So many thoughts and so many dreams of a mountain that seemed a World
away. I am not sure why it became so important to me but over the
years it never did fade. The dreams and fantasies may have changed, but
not the calling inside of the mountain. For all the changes in my
World and in my life the mountain was still the same in the distance.
It still would provide hope and an escape.

I gradually knew that I had to go to the mountain to be close to it
and experience it. I eventually drove by the mountain and was amazed
as it was larger than life even as I stood in its shadows. Eventually
a trip up the Auto Road happened and it felt as if I was rising to the
clouds. In fact, I was on day I drove up to the summit. It was seventy
degrees at the bottom of the mountain, but at the top it was foggy and
windy with temps cold
enough to see your breath. I was inside the
mystery and magic of the mountain. I could still only dream of the
view from the top. I was there, but it was truly only a taste of it.
The Auto Road provides an adventure of its own but it was not nearly
enough to satisfy my inner desire.

As my road in life traveled
through my own peaks and valleys the
mountain became a shadow looming in my mind. Anxiety became my sun and
my World revolved around it. In many ways it still does today as the
battle rages on. Nothing is easy for me, nothing is simple, it just
isn't that way. I am truly what I am and working towards what I want
to be and someday I will get there. Dreams truly only die if you let
them. I eventually found something called Geo-caching and that combined
with a GPS unit got me on the move again.

Soon the mountain was visible again and coming to the forefront in my
mind. A little over one year ago I started to hike and the goal from
day one was a goal from long ago-to hike Mount Washington. Now as a 36 year-old adult with
type 2 diabetes, anxiety, and fading dreams of glory, the mountain was
prominent again on my horizon. In fact it slowly blocked out my sun.

I began to hike and remember the first time I looked at the map and
saw the strange lands of Crawford Notch, Franconia Notch, and Pinkham
Notch. Because of my anxiety they seemed as if they were distance lands
so very far away from my reach. Mount Washington was just a dream and
just a goal that I expected to miss like so many others in my life.
The story of almost was one I lived all too often.

Hiking was something I started slowly with at first as I challenged
myself with trails around my home and slowly built my comfort zone
outward. I faced many challenges on the hikes from my anxiety. I was
at times afraid, doubtful, nervous, unsure, scared, faithless, and
confused on all my hikes. So many times I wanted to turn and just go
back to my safety. Let my sun shine down on me. Mount Washington though
blocked my sun more and more
with each and every hike that was inching
my way to its shadows. Eventually the hikes were right with in the
area and the distant lands were no longer mysterious but purely
magical. Each time I visit the White Mountains a spell is cast upon me
that transforms me for at least a little while and maybe more little
by little with each visit.

On my first summit of Pleasant Mountain it was an amazing site to see
Mount Washington as I crested the summit. Standing on top of South
Moat or Keasarge North in the winter gave me stunning views of
Washington. I sat in the Fire Tower on top of Kearsarge North and just
stared at the beauty around me, but Mount Washington was the beauty
among beauties. Mount Pierce in the winter was a winter wonderland
and Mount
Washington looked oh so close but yet so far. Then from
Jefferson and Eisenhower it felt like I could almost touch it but
didn't quite dare. It was a dream, a goal and I expected it to jump
away from me or slip past.

It didn't though as it stood just like it was when I was a boy. I
drove through the White Mountains often over this last year and have
seen some amazing things that I truly am blessed to have seen. The one
thing I kept seeing looming and blocking my sun was still there
waiting for me. Inside I began the battle of can I? I doubted myself
and wondered if I could get past the anxiety to
give it a go.

Then it happened on a beautiful October day. It was unusually warm and
not a cloud in the sky. Ammonousac Ravine here I come!!! I began at
the Cog Railway Base Station and then followed the trail along the
river. It was filled with lush green around me and the sound of water
tumbling downward. The
air was cool and filled with fresh scents of
the forest. Each step was filled with energy and confidence as I
headed to Gem Pool. I came a cross a large rock with a plaque on it
that marked the spot where Herbert Judson Young had passed away. I
paused and prayed before placing a stone upon the top before moving
onward. I finally arrived at the beautiful pool and decided it was a
place to savoir.

After resting and refueling at Gem Pool I began the stair-master to the
AMC Lake of the Clouds hut. This part of the hike was the most physically
demanding and also the part where the anxiety crept in a little. The
stair-master was pretty darn steep, but I reminded myself of the Caps
Ridge Trail and new I could do this trail. The anxiety began to fade
as the other hikes prepared me for this hike. I came to an outlook and
decided it was time for another break. I enjoyed looking out over the
valley. I returned to the stair-master and soon I was at a ladder,
which I climbed. The scramble over slabs replaced the stair-master
part of
the hike. Waterfalls were running down the slabs off to one
side and this was inspiring in itself but then more views opened and I
could see the towers on the summit. My heart was beating fast and hard,
but was it because of the hike or my personal journey?

I broke from the trail to see the AMC Hut in front of me. It was a
very welcome site and I was tired. I rested here for awhile but maybe
not long enough. I was eager to go forward. My dream was only 1.4
miles from me now. I could see ahead why it would be called the "Rock
Pile" as between me and the summit were nothing but rocks.

The last part of the trip was tough as I was tired and my legs wanted
more rest but my heart said go on. I went and paused and went some
more. It was getting closer and closer. I was almost there and could
feel the excitement growing. I felt like the little boy again filled
with hope and promise. I felt no anxiety. Another step, a little
stumble, and another step..... I was there. I REACHED THE SUMMIT!!!! I
looked around and I could see
forever.

Inside I was bursting with joy. Physically drained and emotionally
spent as well. I had battled and battled step after step to the top. I
was on top of the "Rock Pile" but it might as well as have been the
World to me. I quietly thanked God and I think I even heard him say,
"Good
job!!"

Sitting here today a day after the hike I am not sore as I expected
from the journey as I had been on previous hikes but I am rather
content. I am truly happy inside and proud of myself. I realized my
dream and it was as good as I had imagined since I was a little boy
looking to the horizon back in
Portland and back on the Western
Promenade.

Steve M
10-08-2007, 11:27 PM
lititz pa

I have not visited there yet but her parents and sister live there. Her brother lives in dover delaware. They are all from Maine but left in about 1990.
Don't go man, do whatever it takes but don't do it!!!! You'll end up like me, shipwrecked in the tropics, staring at palm trees while your heart longs for Paper Birch and Spruce and Hemlock! You'll be a flatlander while your legs are longing for steep slopes! You'll sit there, night after night, looking at others pictures, dreaming of being there to take them yourself! If your lucky, you will make it back once a year. You'll spend your time there cramming every minute full of experiences as if it were your last trip. It will all go by as a blur and it will be time to leave before you know it and all you will have until the following year will be the pics you took during your short stay! I tell you man, perish the thought! Cast it from you! Do not let such foolishness take hold! To be far from the White's is almost like...well...Death:D !

lwa11
10-08-2007, 11:33 PM
lol

Oh I hear you and I keep telling her she is trying to plant a seed on a summit where no seeds survive.

I love the fact I can watch a sunrise at the coast and have lunch in the mountains and watch the sunset anywhere between in just one day.

Steve M
10-08-2007, 11:37 PM
lol

Oh I hear you and I keep telling her she is trying to plant a seed on a summit where no seeds survive.

I love the fact I can watch a sunrise at the coast and have lunch in the mountains and watch the sunset anywhere between in just one day.
I hear ya, the old saying goes..."you never know what you got until it's gone";)

Maksutov
10-09-2007, 01:03 AM
[edit]BTW, did you climb Tucks and then hike the crossover to the Lakes before summiting? That seems to be the sequence....Sorry about the brain gas. Ammonoosuc all the way!

The first time I climbed that, in May, 1965, the pond at the base of the falls was still choked with ice.

lwa11
10-09-2007, 08:37 AM
It seems like that pond would have a hard time getting rid of it's ice. It looked cold but refreshing.

I vote they move it up higher so it is more benificial to hikers who need to cool off. lol

Rich
10-09-2007, 10:18 AM
I hear ya, the old saying goes..."you never know what you got until it's gone";)

how about...

"Don't take New Hampshire for Granite"

Steve M
10-09-2007, 03:31 PM
how about...

"Don't take New Hampshire for Granite"
Cute!...I like it!...It works!:cool:

Maksutov
10-09-2007, 06:29 PM
Don't go man, do whatever it takes but don't do it!!!![edit]To be far from the White's is almost like...well...Death:D !Good advice. Where I wound up being stuck has a state highpoint that towers above the landscape at 806 feet. wow.

Biggest mistake of my life was leaving New England. Well, that and getting married. Two disasters I'm still suffering the consequences of.

KD Talbot
10-09-2007, 07:03 PM
Lloyd,
Your story is beautiful and I think if it were known, we all feel like little boys when we're climbing in the mountains. I think it's why we go. Thanks for wearing your heart on your sleeve.

KDT

Charlie
10-09-2007, 07:50 PM
lititz pa

I have not visited there yet but her parents and sister live there. Her brother lives in dover delaware. They are all from Maine but left in about 1990.

OK thats 5 min from me so if she makes you move here you can have my house and i will take your house up there :D
don't move it is getting a little to build up for me but i need to Waite until my kids are out of school .

Steve M
10-09-2007, 09:44 PM
OK thats 5 min from me so if she makes you move here you can have my house and i will take your house up there :D
don't move it is getting a little to build up for me but i need to Waite until my kids are out of school .
Bite your tongue hawk, he's gonna beat her into a sense of reality!:D

lwa11
10-10-2007, 08:33 AM
Thanks KD. I appreciate the kinds words. I can see why so many are inspired by the mountains from close up or even from a distance. Plus I just love to write.


I am hope guys I have her convinced to stay here. I think I may need to have a child to plant deeper roots. Maine doesn't help though as they tax everything at least and sometimes twice. Makes it more expensive than it needs to be way too often.

I have also tried to tell her with Global Warming we will have their weather soon and the cold excuse will be gone.