Color on Mount Washington

How did I not know about the White Mountains in New Hampshire? I’m a mountain girl. Just love them. So, when my friend, Patti, posted beautiful photos of mountains in New Hampshire I knew I had to go there. Since we were already going north to Maine, we decided to go ahead and stop in New Hampshire. Besides, Matt needed geocaches in that state too. The drive from Bar Harbor to Shelburne, New Hampshire went great. I was thankful that we hadn’t run into any moose. The signs along the way were quite startling.DSC_8608 2

I kept wondering, “Who wouldn’t brake for a moose?” I pictured someone saying, “Wow! A moose! Let’s hit it!” Well, we arrived safely to our campsite at the Timberland Campground and Matt was eager to find a NH geocache. He found one right by the campground sign and relaxed in a nearby chair to sign the log book.DSC_8357 3

Oh, I laughed! He looked so funny sitting there. We strolled around the campground and by the nearby river until it was time for bed. We had plans to ascend Mount Washington the next day. I’d love to say that we now have a bumper sticker that says, “This car climbed Mt.Washington,” but Sherman was too big to be allowed up the mountain. Since I doubted that anyone would let us borrow their car, we took a guided tour in a van. As much as I would have loved to drive up ourselves, our tour guide was full of interesting information and fun too. My only wish was that we would have stopped to take photos. Instead I took some out the window. One of the people on the tour with us wondered why there wasn’t snow on Mt. Washington since it was part of the White Mountains. I thought it would be snow covered too, but our guide told us that the rock on these mountains had mica in it. This would shimmer and people called the mountains white because of the mica.  She explained that while we were there, we would see many different colors on this White Mountain. Berries were hanging in clusters.DSC_8376 2

Lower on the mountain, deciduous trees and evergreens were mixed.  The leaves were just beginning to turn lovely colors and they made the mountain look polka-dotted among the pine trees. DSC_8378 2

Our guide explained that the further we ascended, the more the landscape would change. Soon it was all evergreen trees and they became shorter and shorter.DSC_8381 2

She pointed out that then the trees would disappear. A ground cover was in bloom and she called the color moave (with a long o). I had never heard mauve pronounced that way! DSC_8388 2

Another way to enjoy Mt. Washington is to ride the Cog Railroad. As we rounded a corner, we had a lovely view of the train against the mountains.DSC_8397 2

Finally, we arrived at the top and I was able to take photos without a window in the way. We were blessed with an amazingly clear day and the view was spectacular! It was 45 degrees with wind speeds of 45 mph. There were some gusts of about 60 mph. Mt. Washington is known for dangerous weather. It’s worst recorded wind gust is 231 mph! Thankfully, it was not that way on our day there!

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At the summit, it was so barren. It almost seemed like something from outer space. Who would have guessed there would be a hotel in such a place? The Tip Top House was built in 1853 and was indeed used as a hotel. It is now a museum showing what it would have been like to stay there.

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People stay year round on the summit, but not in the Tip Top House. Someone has to man the observatory at all times. I just cannot imagine being up there in the extreme winter weather. See the green rocks? Lichen is the only thing that grows up there.

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Even on our nice day, the wind was strong enough to hold the flags straight out! And when I had Matt pose for a photo in one spot, it was difficult to stand still enough to take the shot because of gusts.

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The mountains went on and on and on…

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We watched the Cog Railroad train go back down the mountain. It was tempting to come another day and take the train. But we only had so many days and lots more to do in New Hampshire. I had heard there were some waterfalls to see! But look at all the lovely colors on the mountains.

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Mount Washington was all it was cracked up to be!

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When we came back down, we found Sherman pouting at the base of the mountain. Still wish we could have driven up the mountain ourselves. Maybe next time!

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6 thoughts on “Color on Mount Washington

  1. We’ve been to White Face Mountain and remember snow being there in June. I don’t remember how barren it is at the top. Such an interesting place to visit. You did an excellent job with your photos and a great job telling your story.Keep it up.

    • Mt Washington is taller than White Face Mountain. So, maybe I wasn’t totally off in thinking that there could be snow there in Sept. But there wasn’t any when we were there! It really was an interesting place!

  2. I have friends that live nearby…Petersboro. They had a small farm there. Some in their family have great Boston accents…absolutely hilarious! (Ask them to say car….kaw?) And the mountains are incredible and quite unique. What was the elevation? Oh…I don’t know if I have the guts for that train ride!!

    • The elevation was 6,288 ft! The view was spectacular on such a clear day. Most days are not that clear there they say. I thought the train ride looked fun, but it takes twice as long to ascend the mountain as if you take the tour in the van.

  3. You know I need more pics than just these! I’ve been waiting a long time. And yes, you should have gone back and done the cog! You might have had snow if you had! Pics are great, as always! Beautiful place, huh!

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