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skiedge1
11-17-2007, 04:56 PM
So here's the deal: me and some buddies are thinking about hiking Mt. Washington sometime next summer (probably around labor day). Most likely, we're looking at coming up from the southwest out of crawford notch. So we don't know if we want to stay in one of the AMC huts (probably lakes of the clouds). Basically, I tried emailing them to ask how to reserve space and how much it would cost, but got a really vague answer.

So: (1) does anyone know how far in advance you need to reserve space at a hut.

(2) How much does it cost nightly

(3) Can anyone tell me if it's even worth it?

Bill O
11-19-2007, 07:54 AM
Its definitely worth it. I'm not sure how much its going to cost next year. Probably pushing $90 a night for a bunk, dinner, and breakfast. A little less if you're an AMC member.

If you want to pay less, much less, you can stay in the lean-to's at Hermit Lake. That's around $5 a night, but you have to cook for yourself.

I'm surprised you found their email address but you couldn't find this information at: www.outdoors.org

As of 8am, their site is down, so check back a little later.

Trekker
11-19-2007, 03:57 PM
Whether or not it's worth it is a very subjective question. At roughly $90 per night, per person, it's quite a bit. However, you have to factor in the cost of an overnight stay, (at the top of the world with a comfy mattress, blankets and pillow) as well as the cost of two gourmet meals - also cooked for you (and served) at a restaurant with an incredible view (talk about ambiance!). When you look at it that way, the cost seems downright cheap!! Then you factor in the fun of conversation with so many like-minded folks - listening, laughing and sharing in the "stories-of-the-day". It can be a wonderful, warm, memorable time. And one well worth the money spent.
On the other hand, I know people who will NEVER stay in a hut - claiming they're out hiking to get AWAY from society and finding the social, alpine hot-spot a horrible intrusion on their peaceful world.
So, wondering whether it's "worth it" is truly a matter of your own perspective.
Once you've determined THAT, and, assuming you're still interested, you need to act quick to reserve yourselves a spot. (Yes, there are MANY who DO find it very "worth it"!!) Especially with Lakes of the Clouds - the premiere hut in the system. Most of these huts are filled quickly for the summer weekends. By quickly I mean that the weekend reservations for July and August CAN be filled up by the middle of February! So, while you're enjoying your holidays make sure you find some time to sit with your buddies and plan, plan, plan . . .
As for me, I LOVE the huts. I find the whole experience priceless. If I'm out for a week or more I will try to afford one nights stay at a hut and then a couple tent platform nights, and a few nights on my own in the woods. That's a perfect week to me . . .
Good luck - the most important thing is to simply GET OUT THERE!

Condor
11-24-2007, 10:47 AM
Summer 07 I did my first hut stay on a hike up Mt Washington. Hopefully I will be back in NH for many more treks through the Whites.

In my opinion, a stay in a hut, in my case Lake of the Clouds, is definitely worth it. As Trekker said, hut stays intermingled with tent camping would be ideal for a multi-day trek.

I enjoy backpacking, tenting, cooking for myself over a camp stove, etc...; however, if this is your first trip to the Whites, and maybe an only trip (God forbid), a hut stay would be worth it. The comradarie is great, the experience is great.

My favorite experience was conversing with the through hikers. That in and of itself was worth the money. Though it will probably be too early for them to be passing through when you are planning your trip.

mtruman
12-28-2007, 10:44 AM
Slow reply here, but just saw this thread. A stay in the huts is well worth it. Last July my wife and I did a hut to hut presidential traverse and it was the best experience of my life. The hike was spectacular and the stay at the huts made it even better. Met a bunch of fantastic people including the other hikers and the croo in every hut. Planning to do it again this summer (with a different route and set of huts this time.

Here's the link to the trip report on wmgonline: http://www.wmgonline.org/community/tripreports/index.cfm?action=detail&report=40

Here's the link to my photo album of the trip. Hope this convinces you to go!
http://picasaweb.google.com/mtruman42/HutToHutPresidentialTraverse?authkey=9WiVzzeNIqg&pli=1

http://lh3.google.com/mtruman42/RrDTgWn6b0E/AAAAAAAAAa8/sFjJC-jsV_w/s160-c/HutToHutPresidentialTraverse.jpg

Scott Provost
01-03-2008, 12:33 PM
This may sound like a stupid question to you guys, but here I go. Can you set up a tent anywhere on the mountain? Or are there designated area's for setting up camp?

Steve M
01-03-2008, 01:22 PM
This may sound like a stupid question to you guys, but here I go. Can you set up a tent anywhere on the mountain? Or are there designated area's for setting up camp?
Here is a post from KDTalbot from another thread:

"Above treeline you can camp as long as you are on 2+ feet of snow and NOT within the Mount Washington State Park that encircles the summit."

This statement is not true. See camping rules for Forest Protection Areas:

"(1) No camping is permitted above treeline (where trees are less than
8 ft. tall), except in winter, and then only in places where there is at least
2 ft. of snow cover on the ground—but not on any frozen body of water,
and not on the east face of Mt. Washington's summit cone from Boott
Spur to Nelson Crag (the area above Tuckerman and Huntington Ravines,
including the Alpine Garden area). The point where the above-treeline
restricted area begins is marked on most trails with small signs, but the
absence of such signs should not be construed as proof of the legality of
a site."

If you were to be climbing Lion Head you would be on the east face of MW and the area described in the rules would be where you would be apt to try to camp above tree line. Most of this area is not within the State Park.

The first part of the statement: "Best place to camp would be Hermit Lake shelters." is your best advice.

My other advice would be, climb the mountain next summer. Test you endurance and abilities. Learn the trails and escape routes. Get extensive above treeline winter experience on the lower summits, such as Pierce and Eisenhower. Thgen go for it next winter.

I'm sure others will argue that it's no big deal, but in my honest opinion, your first time on Washington should not be a winter attempt.

KDT


Hope this helps and you can find lots more good info and advice by searching the forums, esp. under this category.

Scott Provost
01-03-2008, 02:19 PM
I wouldn't even think of attempting Washington in the winter on my first hike (of the Pres's). I was thinking of a few weekend summer trips with a few friends. But thanks for the help.

KD Talbot
01-03-2008, 04:05 PM
No, I think we realize you don't mean in the winter. The point is there is no camping above treeline in the Presis except in winter and then there are restrictions as to where. The only legal places to camp are where the trees are at least 8 feet tall, and you are 200' from trails and bodies of water and at least 1/4 mile from trailheads or huts. This narrows your choices down significantly. There are legal camping areas at Hermit Lake Shelter in Tuckerman Ravine, The Naumann Tentsite between Mounts Jackson and Pierce, The Valley Way on Mount Adams and at the Log Cabin and Perch Shelters on Mount Adams. All charge a fee. Some are first come, first serve, others require reservations.

http://www.outdoors.org/lodging/campsites/hermit-lake-shelter.cfm

http://www.randolphmountainclub.org/sheltersinfo/theperch.html

http://www.randolphmountainclub.org/sheltersinfo/logcabin.html

There are also the huts, AMC and RMC, but you can't camp there, only stay.

I think the rates at the AMC Huts are between $80-$100 a night depending on wether you include meals. RMC is a different setup.

KDT

FisherCat
01-03-2008, 09:50 PM
I think that if you would also like to include trips to the Northern peaks as well when you go and make it a nice extended trip-that you may enjoy the RMC facilities more.(Disclaimer-I do not belong to the RMC or AMC, just a local who's spent a lot of time at both!)

Scott Provost
01-04-2008, 11:59 AM
Thanks for all the great input. Should make planning much more easier.