When hiking in the mountains one must occasionally have faith in the weather – starting out enmeshed in dense valley fog, only to climb into a spectacular day above the clouds. This was one of those rare, magical days, when we topped a ridgeline and encountered a mountain view more spectacular than any I have seen in 45 years of hiking, with the major peaks of the Berneralps spread across the horizon above a sea of undercast clouds. Breathtaking! Read on for the full story, and be sure to check out the photo gallery.
The weather thus far in Switzerland has been spectacular – blue skies, warm temps, low humidity. And this day, for my first hike, the weather truly delivered in top form. I joined a group organized by D-MTEC, the Department of Management, Technology, and Economics, which is the ETH department where I sit during this year in Zürich. The hike to circumnavigate a small peak named Gandstock was moderate in length and difficulty, covering 11.5 km (7.14 mi) in 4h55 at altitude ranging from 1610m (~5,280′) to 2167m (~7,110′), all of it above treeline. Check out the photo gallery, and read on beyond the break. Continue reading “Gandstock hike”
Summer is winding down here in New Hampshire, with a spell of beautiful weather and fantastic river conditions. The swimming is better than I can ever remember, and the morning mists make my morning row a luscious and mysterious experience. I haven’t has as much time for hiking this summer as I’d hoped, because we are moving to Switzerland for the coming year. Pam and Andy moved there two weeks ago, and I depart tomorrow! I look forward to blogging about our experiences and travels in that beautiful country.
I’ve posted a small gallery of selected photos from the summer, plus a gallery highlighting the many bald eagles I’ve had the joy to see in the area (one highlight below). And, a gallery of raptors from a brief visit to the nearby Vermont Institute of Natural Science during their “falconry” demonstration.
Sunset views of the Presidential Range from Mount Martha, in New Hampshire.
On the night before the spring equinox I hiked with a dear friend to the top of Mount Martha in the northern White Mountains of New Hampshire. We aimed for sunset, knowing that Martha has a spectacular view of the Presidential Range to the east.
The snow conditions were excellent, after a week of warm weather had consolidated the snow and a day’s cold weather had firmed the packed trail into a solid base that was perfect for micro spikes. I pushed up the trail hard and fast, carrying a heavy pack with photography equipment, spare clothing, and a warm dinner, with a wary eye to the sun setting behind me as I neared the ridgeline. I arrived at the summit 15 minutes before sunset and was pleased to see the Presies still fully illuminated, with the nearly-full moon rising above them. The wind was dead calm, and the temperature a moderate 15 degrees. As the sun’s orange globe glowed orange through the trees behind me, I quickly set up my tripod and started snapping photos of the Presies.
We reveled in the beauty of the moment, as the sun set in the west while the white-capped Presidential peaks turned pink and the sky above blended into a gradient from purple to blue. After about forty minutes we reluctantly turned and headed back down the trail, with the rising full moon so brightly illuminating the forest floor that we never needed headlamps. A magical evening in an amazing place! I’ve posted my favorite photos in this gallery.
Black & White photographs of a quiet, snowy morning in Lyme.
This morning I was skiing through a quiet morning snowfall across pristine farm fields in Lyme, New Hampshire, and came across this scene of an antique farm instrument under an apple tree. Although I had only my iPhone, I thought it might look good in black & white. I haven’t done black & white photography since my earliest camera – which could only take rolls of black & white film! So I fiddled a little in Adobe Lightroom and think the result is not too shabby.
A gorgeous sunny day on Moosilauke, with an undercast across Vermont and southern New Hampshire. Deep snow, temps in 20s, no wind – amazing day!
I’d heard that the mountains were in “full winter conditions” already. I finally had a chance to check it out today. What I found was astonishing – deep powder snow like mid-winter, but in November! (Ok, today is December 1st, but it’s also November 31st, and I’m gonna go with that.) Be sure to check out the photos, and read on for more! Continue reading “Moosilauke in early winter”
We have completed the entire journey of the river through New Hampshire and Vermont!
For the past six years we have been canoeing sections of the Connecticut River from its source at the New Hampshire-Canada border toward its mouth on Long Island Sound. Each year we pick up where we left off the previously – so this year we launched our canoes just below Bellows Falls, and paddled three days to the first take-out inside Massachusetts. As a result, we have completed the entire journey of the river through New Hampshire and Vermont! We’ve been fortunate to follow the string of campsites organized by the Connecticut River Paddlers’ Trail and their excellent map. This year we paddled through a beautiful section of river, with good weather, albeit with some strong headwinds. We passed the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant (now being decommissioned), and the city of Brattleboro, and portaged around Vernon Dam. Continue reading “River trip – to Massachusetts!”