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Great Guinness Ghost
01-28-2009, 01:26 PM
I,ve just read the article in National Geographic about Mt. Washington and I have to tell you I thought it was lousy. Here's why. Of the four pages of text, three and a half were dedicated to the authors' hike and mending of fences with his brother. I'm glad they now get along. I'm also glad that one or both didn't die up there. The conditions he described, in my opinion, were right for turning back and getting off the mountain. They were lucky that when they reached the summit the skies had cleared. Each year novice hikers as well as professionals die, not just in the Whites, but all around the world. I think that those who should know better should act that way. We've all heard that "cotton kills", well so does pride. I'm sure I'm not alone in this forum that others have turned back when the conditions turned unfavorable. I for one am in no hurry nor do I think it would be cool to have my name put on a plaque at the summit! I've read similar articles (not long ago in AMC mag) about pro. mountaineers getting seriously hurt or dying because of poor judgement. Why can't the articles emphasize the dangers and focus on where ,when and why a hiker or skier, etc. turned back and called it a day. That would be educational, not glorifying risk.
One other thought on this story. What a missed oppourtunity to bring attention to a vast audience, the great work the Observatory does in climate research and education and so on. I know the story was about Mt. Washington but it's a shame so little was mentioned about hte Obs. The pictures were nice but frankly, I'd rather have my five bucks back!

KD Talbot
01-28-2009, 05:25 PM
we discussed this a bit in this thread. I think you'll like this article far better:

http://www.mountwashington.org/forums/showthread.php?t=4546

KDT

sheri
02-01-2009, 10:47 AM
Guiness - -- I just read the article too and am in agreement with you. A major waste of an opportunity to teach the readers numerous things about cold weather hiking, the observatory, when to turn back, being prepared, "reaching the summit is optional, returning to the trail head is mandatory," and on and on. It's a shame. (BTW, according to your location in Willi,CT, I'm probably 10 minutes away from you!)

Bill O
02-01-2009, 09:44 PM
Guiness - -- I just read the article too and am in agreement with you. A major waste of an opportunity to teach the readers numerous things about cold weather hiking, the observatory, when to turn back, being prepared, "reaching the summit is optional, returning to the trail head is mandatory," and on and on. It's a shame. (BTW, according to your location in Willi,CT, I'm probably 10 minutes away from you!)

Nat Geo has never really been an educational magazine for hikers. I don't consider it an opportunity missed. What % of readers do you think care about learning about cold weather hiking? 1%? Maybe less. I suspect I'm not the only one, but the only reason I used to subscribe to Nat Geo was for the photos.

Also, was this an article about the Mount Washington Observatory? I thought it was just about Mount Washington. It is just a bonus they featured the Obs.

fifteendays
02-01-2009, 11:21 PM
Bill, that's the way I see it, too. Sure, it would have been fantastic if the article was an Observatory infomercial or a "how to" for winter mountaineering, but the photos tell the tale of who we are and what we do at the Obs, and that is absolutely tremendous.

Scot
MWO Staff

Brad
02-02-2009, 08:47 AM
Exposure of this sort is the good kind.

BlueDog
02-02-2009, 10:45 AM
I liked the article (though I haven't picked up the issue, YET) and didn't see it as a mean to promo the MWO or the research being done, etc. It was more of a Men vs Mountain story. I think the caliber of subscriber to NatGeo is already of the mind that they only need the mention of the Obs and they will seek out more if so desire.