The ice in Huntington Ravine has been forming for the past few weeks, although there have been some hiccups with the warm spells we have had, but with the sub zero temps for the past couple of days climbers have been able to get back out on the ice! The picture above is of Odell's Gully, which has been one of the more popular climbs in the past week. The picture below is of the beginning section of Yale Gully. Can you spot the 4 climbers in the picture below?
Even if you are not an ice climber the hike up to the ravine is gorgeous, it is just under 3 miles to the headwall. Be prepared for rocky and icy conditions as the approach goes though a boulder field. On my hike today there was about 2-4 inches of snow over ice, with some areas of open water on the last section of trail. I had light traction on due to the rocky and icy conditions. Picture to the right is looking into Pinkham Notch from the base of the Huntington headwall.
The trail begins at Pinkham Notch on the Tuckerman Ravine Trail. Now that we are entering our winter season our avalanche board will be updated daily at 6:30am with the slats as well as the Mount Washington Avalanche Center conditions and advisory report which is compiled daily by the United States Forest Service Snow Rangers. These advisories are updated usually between 8am and 9am. You can also call them at (603) 466-2856.
As you can see the current conditions (picture to the right) to Crystal Cascades, 0.3 miles up the Tuckerman Ravine Trail, it is icy with patches of snow. Light traction such as Hillsound Trail Crampons or Kahtoola Microspikes are required for a more enjoyable and safe hike! If you are staying at the Joe Dodge Lodge you can demo these for free.
The first 1.7 mile of the Tuckerman Ravine Trail is moderate with about 1,500' of elevation gain. There an intersection with the fire road at this point, with a trail sign on a tree going over a large rock. If you take the right onto this trail it brings you to the Harvard Cabin and continuing further to the Huntington Ravine Trail.
The Harvard Cabin is open from December 1st until April 1st. It costs $15 per night per person when you get to the cabin. It is a first come first serve basis, you can make same day reservations at the Pinkham Notch Visitors Center. During our winter operational hours (6:30am-9:00pm) you can see our front desk staff to reserve, otherwise the reservation book is downstairs in the packup room, which is open 24 hours a day.
If you are coming to the notches to climb and do winter mountaineering a great resource for up to date conditions and route advice is through NEice. If you are looking for guiding, buying/renting gear, or just for some advice on some local climbing spots International Mountain Equipment in downtown North Conway is a great resource as well as Eastern Mountain Sports which is near the outlets in North Conway.
The AMC also offers clinics and group trips for ice climbing and winter mountaineering. All of our programs for the '13/'14 season can be found on our Activities and Events Page. For any general questions, conditions information, or trail advice, please feel free to contact us
here at the Pinkham Notch Visitor Center front desk. We are
available by phone at (603) 466-2721 every day from 6:30 AM to 9:00 PM
or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. To make reservations at AMC Lodges and Huts, please call
(603)466-2727 available Monday through Saturday 9am-5pm.
We also offer ski and stay packages at our Joe Dodge Lodge and the Highland Center.
Backcountry Information Specialist
AMC Pinkham Notch Visitor Center
Labels: avalanche reports, Huntington Ravine, Joe Dodge Lodge, Mount Washington, New Hampshire, Pinkham Notch, ski and stay packages