Tag Archives: mt washington
Last weekend, Ben Jacobsen and I drove overnight (I left Cape Cod at 9:45) and headed up to the Mt. Washington Auto Road for sunrise. Three times per summer the Auto Road opens their gates well before dawn to allow customers to reach the summit before sunrise. Ben and I were waiting at the gate at 3:45AM and reached the summit by 4:30.
I’ve hiked Mt. Washington a bunch and every time I’ve reached the top I’ve scoffed at the parking lots and people milling around and taking pictures at the summit sign. I saw no reason to drive up the mountain. I was actually really impressed with the road and had a blast driving up. The road is visually stunning and quite exciting to drive. For over a mile we were driving through the clouds with only the occasional glimpse down the mountainside to remind us how steep the dropoffs were.
The sunrise at the summit was quite underwhelming. The mountain was in and out of a batch of east-to-west moving clouds for most of the morning and any sunrise light that may have occured was blocked by the clouds. The undercast was pretty impressive, however, and it was nice to be up on the summit for the start of the day.
After the sunrise, Ben and I parked the car about a mile down the road and hiked out into the Alpine Garden and over the tops of Huntington and Tuckerman Ravines.
By the time we got to the bottom of the road, it was barely 9:00, so we spent an hour or so exploring Sabbaday Falls. The falls are actually quite large and there are a bunch of different compositions and viewpoints to explore. The water was piercingly cold but I had tons of fun climbing around the falls getting different shots.