Mt Washington State Park: Tuesday May 22, 2012

Mt Washington State Park is officially open for the season!

Summit Sunday

The Sherman Adams Summit Building is open from 8am to 6pm daily. We hope to get the Tip Top House Historic Site open for this weekend too.

Tip Top House

The Auto Road is open daily while the Cog is only running weekends until June. With the addition of faster more powerful diesel locomotives the Cog no longer needs Skyline Switch.

Cog Diesel
Skyline Switch

They are in the process of dismantling and taking the Skyline Switch off the mountain. All passing of trains (when downhill and uphill trains meet) is now done on-the-fly at the Wambek passing lane. Hikers should note that one way down service on the Cog is on a space available basis only. If the train is full, as they were all weekend, then they can’t take hikers down. The Auto Road’s Hiker Shuttle Service from the summit to Pinkham Notch starts this Memorial Weekend. Hikers should also note this service closes for day at 4pm. Arriving on summit after 4pm you better be prepared with enough energy in your legs to hike back down the mountain.

Frosty mornings still are occurring on the summit but are becoming more infrequent.

Frosty Morning

The Alpine Flowers are beginning to show early this season as well.

Lapland Rosebay

I saw some Lapland Rosebay, Diapensia and Mountain Azalea blooming in lower sections of Alpine Gardens on Monday. Peak bloom usually mid-June could be early June this year.

Long range weather forecast is looking pretty good for the upcoming holiday weekend with Sunday the best weather for mountain climbing/viewing.

We have a new Park Ranger, Jim Cyrs, starting this past week.

James Cyrs

Jim, from Sugar Hill NH, is a graduate of Bozeman State University in Montana with a degree in snow science and a passion for anything outdoors. Jim was on the summit last Wednesday when the summit was hit with an intense lightning storm

Lightning Strike

He saw not only an amazing display of nature’s fury streaking across the sky but also saw the sparks flying out of electrical fixtures, St Elmo’s fire and a very cool  sunset.


Jim already has helped with several rescues since his return from Montana.


His strength, easy going personality and EMT skills will be a big asset to Mt Washington State Park. If you see Jim at the Information Desk on the summit please say Hello! Jim along with fellow rookie ranger Nate Camille and veteran ranger Guy Jubenville will all be taking turns at writing this blog over the summer.


Mike Pelchat, Manager of Mt. Washington State Park

I've been working atop Mt Washington for past 30 years so you can guess I like it above the tree line! After all these years I still never tire of the beauty of our NH White Mtns and consider my employment an extreme honor and privilege to work for the State Of NH and serve its visitors. When not on the summit you can find me enjoying the rock & ice climbing one of the many beautiful granite cliffs we have in Franconia, Crawford or Echo Lake State Parks. I have taken these climbing skills learned at our NH State Parks to climb in Alaska, Andes, Canadian Arctic and Himalayas. I live in Gorham NH with my wife Diane Holmes.

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