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Monadnock Weekly Report 07.19.13

Posted on by Patrick Hummel, Volunteer Program Coordinator

 07.19.13

“We sometimes hear, half waked from sleep
A nearer hoof, a phantom neigh
Till breezes from Monadnock sweep
And bear the magic sounds away.”
Col. Thomas Wentworth Higginson.

 

A hazy view of our storied peak, taken from the Noble Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

A hazy view of our storied peak, taken from the Noble Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

The brutally hot weather blanketing much of the Midwest and Eastern United States has been no stranger to us here in the Monadnock Region over the past week. Dense, heavy air has sat upon our mountain for days and now, today, with temperatures forecasted to reach into the 90’s, your Park Manager is day dreaming of the inevitabile welcoming of the winter months (more so than usual).

 

Yesterday's limited view towards Jaffrey and the Wapack Range from Monadnock's Cliff Walk trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

Yesterday’s limited view towards Jaffrey and the Wapack Range from Monadnock’s Cliff Walk trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

With a summit celebrated for its maximum 100+ mile views, hikers at the top of Monadnock this week have been fortunate to have a view of nearby Keene, only about 11 miles away (as the raven flies).

These daytime conditions appear to be breaking up soon. Temperatures should top out in the low 80’s on Saturday, although there is a chance for some heavy rain, and possibly a thunderstorm, to develop in the afternoon.

Sunday appears to be a banner day for a Monadnock climb; mostly sunny skies and temperatures in the upper 70’s. However, trails may be wet in some areas on Sunday if rain falls on Saturday. We’re looking just as good for Monday’s forecast, but some more, much-needed rain could be on the way by midweek. Keep an eye on the forecast, stay hydrated, stay safe, and happy trails!

Early morning sun breaks through on Monadnock's southwest flanks. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

Early morning sun breaks through on Monadnock’s southwest flanks. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

Monadnock Trails Week

The 8th Annual Monadnock Trails Week wrapped up on Tuesday, this past week. Monadnock Trails Week, for those who do not know, is a collaborative volunteer trail work event on Mount Monadnock sponsored and coordinated by the Society For The Protection of New Hampshire Forests and Monadnock State Park. Special thanks again to Carrie Deegan and the fine people at the New Hampshire Forest Society.

A new stone staircase was installed on the Fairy Spring Trail as part of Monadnock Trails Week. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

A new stone staircase was installed on the Fairy Spring Trail as part of Monadnock Trails Week. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

I want to sincerely thank all staff members, orgainzations, and volunteers who came out to make this the most successful Trails Week yet! Over the five days, 82 individual volunteers donated 1,026 total hours, completing an array of trail maintenance projects benefitting nearly a third of the mountain’s trails!

 

The newly completed footbridge on the Parker Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

The newly completed footbridge spanning Ainsworth Brook on the Parker Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

The volume of work output and dedication, along with the sincere joy and commradery of the volunteers and staff for this year’s event in dontaing their time, energy, sweat, and patience was truly impressive and a shining example of the spirit of volunteerism. We can’t thank the participants enough and I am most certain, Mount Monadnock thanks you too. We hope to see you for Monadnock Trails Week in July of 2014!

 

Trail treats! This low blueberry bush is found on the south side of Monadnock. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

Trail treats! This low blueberry bush is found on the south side of Monadnock. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

Monadnock Flashback! 

Monadnock photo op. Courtesy of NH State Parks and Ken Williams Photography.

Monadnock photo op. Courtesy of NH State Parks and Ken Williams Photography.

 

This photograph, courtesy of the NH State Parks archives, is certainly a fun picture for many reasons. I believe it dates to the 1960’s and was taken off of Route 124 near the Jaffrey/Troy town line. It appears to be Perkins Pond in the foreground. While this is obviously a staged photograph, I do find it mildly amusing that Mount Monadnock is not going to end up anywhere in the father’s picture of the children.

I took a few minutes to attempt to recapture the image while passing through yesterday, but I think I was ~15 yards too far west. The trees, plantlife, and even the pond have obviously changed in the last 50 years.

 

Not too far from where the above image was taken. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

Not too far from where the above image was taken on Route 124. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

Did You Know?

The Monadnock outcropping known as “Monte Rosa” was originally called “Newton’s Peak”. Located around 2,540 feet above sea level and featuring sweeping southern views, Monte Rosa also houses a historic weathervane, which was refurbished this past October for the first time in over a decade (special thanks to Chuck and Lee!).

5-15-13 078

Monte Rosa’s weathervane with Monadnock’s summit in the background. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

Monte Rosa, translating to “rose colored mountain” in Italian, was (re)named by Monadnock legend Scott A. Smith for its rosy glow during sunset. The large metal weathervane sitting on the top of Monte Rosa was originally placed there for guests of the Half Way House Hotel to see which way the wind was blowing up on the mountain. The hotel site is still in view from Monte Rosa, although the trees around the rocky landmark have grown up some.

 

A hazy view over to Monte Rosa from the Noble Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

A hazy view over to Monte Rosa from the Noble Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

The next time you are the the Half Way House site at the top of the Old Toll Road, look to the left of the summit to the closest ledge. When the sun hits it just right, the weathervane (with some inevenitable tree obstruction) can still be viewed, just as the hotel guests did a century ago.

Morning sun cuts through the trees off of the Noble Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

Morning sun cuts through the trees, illuminating the forest floor off of the Noble Trail. 07.18.13. Photo by Patrick Hummel.

 

Thanks, as always, for reading and for supporting NH State Parks.

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About Patrick Hummel, Volunteer Program Coordinator

My name is Patrick Hummel and I am the NH State Parks Volunteer Program Coordinator. I work statewide supporting invidivual volunteers, Friends groups, Trails groups, and community orgainizations in our State Parks. Previously, I was the 8th Park Manager in Monadnock State Park’s history. I grew up in Jaffrey, in the shadow of Mt. Monadnock, establishing a fascination with the mountain at the age of 6. I enjoy hiking, photography, and traveling. I also enjoy non-fiction reading (mostly), Civil War history, and have come to the acceptance that I will never be the starting first baseman for the New York Mets. I am also an avid music fan with a former career in radio and tour management. I now live at the doorstep to the White Mountains. View all posts by Patrick Hummel, Volunteer Program Coordinator →
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One Response to Monadnock Weekly Report 07.19.13

  1. avatar Chris says:

    Wow, Patrick. Beautiful and interesting post. Thanks so much. Will be checking out the weather vane early tomorrow on a crisp fall morning.


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