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Tuckermans Ravine - Page 2

post #31 of 35

Mt Washington and Tuckermans was a thing for me as well especially during the 60's. I worked for the Cog RR one season as a brakeman and track crew. We used to hike up the mountain in the evenng after work and catch the last train down from the summit. Sometimes we would make it to the summit, sometimes we would traverse across to Skyline platform (next to the Great Gulf) and catch the train there. I remember spending blissful days off lying in the grass and wildflowers in one of those little alcoves in the rock on the Great Gulf headwall or hiking the Great Gulf in the mist and pouring rain, hiking up the Sphinx col trail amongst the waterfalls.. One winter a friend and I did a ski traverse of the northern Presidentials and down to Pinkhams. We set off up Lowe's Path at sunrise and were down at Pinkham notch camp by 1PM or so. We didn't have any skins (in fact I'm not sure where you could have bought any back then. We probably couldn't have afforded them anyway.)  We used old wood skis with wood bases with bear traps and cable bindings unhooked (pretty much like today's tele gear) from my childhood with pieces of clothesline wrapped around the skis for traction. Not very elegant but it worked fine. I get a kick out of all the talk today about all the high tech gear available today. I stripped the canvas pack off a WWII army rucksack and bolted a plastic trash can to the tubular steel frame for my springtime excursions up to the Ravine. I used to set up my old canvas boyscout tent inside the old Tuckerman's "A" shelter. (this shelter, dating back to the 1800's was  fnally obliterated in the avalanche off Lions Head in the "69"  season) Having spent a few nights wedged between other bodies in the old "cowshed" shelter (designed to hold 60 but probably closer to a hundred) listening to the drunks puking over the edge made almost anything else preferable. Sitting on the roof of the cowshed watching a lunar eclipse, sharing a beer with a girl you just met, racing another fellow up the boot steps over the lip, perfecting your hop turns on the upper Hillman's, doing gs turns down the Chute, jumping crevasses, screwing up the courage to ski Dodge's, going for the summit and skiing the upper snowfields, these are some of the memories that stay with you. I have to agree that the Ravine seems to be something less nowadays with the huge crowds that show up there. I was privileged to be there during a very special time.

post #32 of 35

Thanks for sharing your memories, oisin.

post #33 of 35

sounds great, like an intro to a novel perhaps? thanks for sharing, sounds like an era ive missed, i wish i could have been there during those times.

post #34 of 35

oisin, you have had wonderful times on the Rock Pile. We have tread some of the same paths. There is just something magic about that place. 


post #35 of 35

Video - Skiing Tuckermans ~1984



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