Pemi-Bondcliff backpack

We spent four days and three nights backpacking in the Pemigewasset Wilderness, the central region of the White Mountains National Forest.

Every year at this time we try to get out for an extended camping and hiking trip.  The weather this year turned out to be fantastic. We delayed our trip for a day to skip the showers on Wednesday, but other than a brief shower during the hike in on Thursday, we had four days of spectacular sunny, warm weather. Read on!

Family photo on Bondcliff. Pemigewasset Wilderness, in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.
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Backpacking Zealand notch

Our first-ever family backpacking trip, through Zealand notch in White Mountain National Forest.

On Labor Day weekend, we took the kids on their first backpacking trip.  We hiked in from Zealand road past Zealand hut to Thoreau Falls, within the NH White Mountains.  The weather was fantastic, and we found a nice campsite off in the woods away from the falls.  We spent two nights there, with a dayhike up to Ethan Pond in between. We had campfires and went swimming under the falls.

We’re ready to head out on our first backpacking trip, at the Zealand trailhead in NH White Mountains.

See the photo gallery.


This post was transferred from MobileMe to WordPress in 2021, with an effort to retain the content as close to the original as possible; I recognize that some comments may now seem dated or some links may now be broken.

Around the world… and home

Almost a year away from home.

We’re home!  After just 24 days less than a year away from home, we’re back.  According to the airline, we flew 29,000 miles, from Boston to Paris to Bangalore to Sydney to Auckland to Fiji to Charleston to Boston, not to mention all the layovers in between.

It’s nice to be back, although a little strange.  The house is pretty much the same, though I now see it through different eyes.  It seems huge, and we seem to have so much stuff.  The cat recognizes us, and seems to he happy that we’re back.  We’re buried in boxes, having shipped home almost two dozen bags and boxes as well as the 10 checked and 6 carry-on bags we brought with us (and which, believe it or not, I managed to fit into my Prius along with all five of us, to get home from the bus stop.)

I’m not sure I’ll be adding much to this blog for a while. I think it will be nice to not be traveling.  If I find some time, I might dig through some of the videotape I shot while in India; although I focused most on still photos, some of the videos might be fun.  


This post was transferred from MobileMe to WordPress in 2021, with an effort to retain the content as close to the original as possible; I recognize that some comments may now seem dated or some links may now be broken.

What we miss

The things we miss.

India is great – we do like it here – but of course we do miss some things from home.

  • Mara misses snow already. (Pretty good, since NH has yet to see Fall!)
  • John misses his friends, his cats, and his house.
  • Andy misses his favorite toys, particularly a box of electrical parts he uses to make contraptions.
  • Pam misses a soft bed and fitted sheets.
  • David misses good beer, rowing, and foggy September mornings. And all the above 😉

This post was transferred from MobileMe to WordPress in 2020, with an effort to retain the content as close to the original as possible; I recognize that some comments may now seem dated or some links may now be broken.

Skiing Mount Cardigan

Skiing the east side of Mount Cardigan.

In early January 2008 I met with some friends to ski up (and down) the east side of Mount Cardigan.  After a big dump of new snow, it was a popular destination that day.

David Metsky, near the summit

See the photo gallery.

This post was transferred from MobileMe to WordPress in 2020, with an effort to retain the content as close to the original as possible; I recognize that some comments may now seem dated or some links may now be broken.

Moosilauke ski – again

Another beautiful day on Mount Moosilauke.

We skiied into the deep, deep blue sky over the summit of Moosilauke on Sunday morning. We had just skiied up the Carriage Road and across the summit ridge to the summit, in the snowiest conditions any of us could remember. The entire east slope of the summit cone was a smooth snowfield, and there was 4-6′ of snow on trail across the ridge. Although some clouds danced around the summits of the other major Whites summits, Moosilauke and Washington shone clear and white in the deep blue sky. 

David Kotz and the summit of Moosilauke, from Carriage Road.

The weather was very warm, about 20-25 degrees, although there was a very strong west wind that made the ridge-crossing bitter cold. Out of the wind and in the sun, sitting on the slope east of the summit, though, we enjoyed a comfortable early lunch. Early because we had made it to the summit by 11am, after a 7am (yawn) start encouraged by Dan Nelson. 

Although snowmachines we passed on the way down had packed the trail into a slick gully, the snow was deep and fluffy, which was good considering how fast we were going when we flew off the trail and into the trees. Despite our best efforts at snowplow and tele turns, we all took some spectacular face plants. 

The crew consisted of Dave Hooke, Ed Lowneymyself, Dan Nelson and his friends Leo and York, a young DOC chubber named Bart, and two excited dogs. The “Best Shades” award goes to Ed and Dave Hooke. What a blast. Thanks for pushing us to get up early, Dan.

See more in the photo gallery.

David Hooke with Ed Lowney, on the Carriage Road.

This post was transferred from MobileMe to WordPress in 2020, with an effort to retain the content as close to the original as possible; I recognize that some comments may now seem dated or some links may now be broken.

Finishing the NH48

Finishing the NH48.

On August 24, 1996, I finally finished hiking all 48 of the peaks over 4000′ in the Whites, on Wildcat A.

This post was transferred from MobileMe to WordPress in 2020, with an effort to retain the content as close to the original as possible; I recognize that some comments may now seem dated or some links may now be broken.

Mitzpah hut

A hike up to Mitzpah hut on a snowy day.

My friend David Metsky wrote this trip report about our hike up to Mitzpah hut on a snowy day.

On a fine winter weekend, Dave Kotz and I decided to hike up to Mizpah Hut from Crawford Notch, via the Crawford Path. It had just snowed and we were expecting deep snow conditions. But the snow was very light and fluffy, so hiking wasn’t a problem.

The trip to the hut is pretty straightforward, just up the Crawford Path and take a right onto the Mizpah cut-off, total distance is only about 3 miles. People had hiked in front of us, but in places the light snow had drifted in and completely covered the tracks.

When we got to the closed hut the weather seemed to be turning worse. The snow was falling heavier as we stopped for lunch. There were lots of folks tenting near the hut (much too close, actually) and one group set up their tents under a huge huge cornice on the far end of the hut. I hope they made it through the night.

We walked around the hut to the backside for a view, then nice hike outthrough the snowy trees. The weather started clearing a bit, and we got nice views in the notch of the old Crawford HouseSaco Lake, and the old Crawford Depot. Through the clouds we even got some nice views of Mt Avalon and Mt Field. Then we shoveled out Dave’s car and were on our way.

This post was transferred from MobileMe to WordPress in 2020, with an effort to retain the content as close to the original as possible; I recognize that some comments may now seem dated or some links may now be broken.

Presie traverse – summer solstice

A traverse of (most of) The Presidential Range on the longest day of summer.

Text and photos by David Metsky; see the full version (with photos) on his site.

The summer was starting and a bunch of friends decided to do a one-day Presidential Traverse around the summer solstice. It’s a very seasonal thing to do, don’t you know. Most of us had done a Traverse, although I think I was the only one to who’d done a one-day trip before.

There were five of us; 3 Dave’s, Kathy, and Lelia, plus Mugs the Wonder dog.
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