Winter finally found its way to the mountains. In this photo taken earlier this week from the Weather Observatory's webcam located down the valley in Jackson there's more than a foot of snow visible on Mt. Washington. At 7 pm Tuesday night (12-29-09) the wind was gusting close to 100 mph on the summit and the temperature was -27 degrees (F) making the windchill close to -70 degrees (F)! That's 70 degrees below zero and remarkably cold!
(Both photos used here were taken from Mt. Washington Observatory webcams)
At 7 am Christmas morning (12-25-09) this was the view from the North webcam showing Mt. Jefferson and Mt. Adams just getting the first sunlight in relatively calm weather conditions. The "under cast" stayed in place for a good part of the day making the valleys a bit cloudy while the high summits basked in sunlight all day. The under cast is reminiscent of what the glacial ice sheet and mountains looked like as it melted down off of the summits some 11,000 years ago leaving the summits as "islands" in the ice.
It's been hard to find time to write in the blog with winter holidays activities and dealing with the reality that my professional life as a social worker becomes really stressful during the Christmas season, particularly this year with the weak economy. I've also had to find time to study properly for a particularly rigorous advanced licensure exam I have to take soon. In the past 18 months I've flunked the exam a few times and on each occasion by only one point which is embarassing to say the least and my punishment for having a too cavalier attitude about it. I've tried to be as delingent as possible the past few weeks as I read up for it.
Since Thanksgiving I have purchased a number of the various geology guides of the White Mountains written by the Goldthwaits and the Billings (Marlin and his wife, Katherine Fowler-Billings). I was fortunate to find copies of these valuable booklets in pristine condition and not far from home. I've also had the person who does my photocopying here in Northampton take my badly worn copy of Richard Goldthwait's "Geology of the Presidential Range" (1939) and do a complete make over. I'll have several copies made to place in the huts this summer but if anyone would like a copy let me know and I'll have extras printed.