It’s not over yet! Tuesday, May 4th Howard Simon and I (Bianca Klar) skied towards North ridge of Mt. Washington. We took a chance on possibly facing some ugly conditions, but knowing that there is still plenty of snow left.
Day started out cool and drizzly but not below freezing, thus keeping the snow in good condition. We started out via South trail from Ray Benson snow park. There was some debris on the trail but we managed to even have a glide. Only a couple of barren patches that we easily skied around. Before we reached Brandenburg shelter, on the right side, facing Mt. Washington we found and a wide opening in the trees that gave us a good view of the terrain we needed to cross in order to reach the North side of the Washington ridge.
It was like a gate, (picture of it included). We basically took a bee line for the ridge, crossing old burned forest, climbing over gentle ridges, and going around some ravines between those ridges.
The crux was when we reached the last band of unburned forest. Now we were above 5500 ft. crossing some frozen steep patches with lots of debris on the snow. As we were exploring the terrain and looking for a best way through, we saw that there were more leveled sections way below us and way above us. Naturally we were between them:-).
It didn’t last too long and we came out on a beautiful open face with clean, soft snow right below the saddle for which we were heading. We zig-zagged our way up to the ridge at 6360 ft. and took a well earned break with glorious views.
Going down was fun! It took us 6.75 miles to get to it and on the way back we took a bit shorter route. Total 12.6 miles and 2199 ft. elevation gain with all our ups and downs.
Photos and report by Bianca Klar