Friday, September 22, 2017

Tuckerman's Ravine

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I skied here two different times – spring '68 and spring of '69 – both years were years of exceptional snowfall, with a record 566.4 in (1,438.7 cm) during the 1968-69 season. Not nearly as many people were skiing as is evidenced in these videos.

Both times I skied here, there was much more snow filling up the bowl than can be seen in most of these photos and videos. The photo on right is what Tuckerman's looked like the first time I skied there. Then we were able to free ski from the snowfields above to the headwall and slopes below.

The top of the headwall is about as steep as it gets. It is so steep below the lip, that you can't see the slope below until you cross over the lip, and commit to being on the face of the headwall.

snowfield-01-smThe view from halfway down Wildcat of Mount Washington, Tuckerman's and Hillman's (the steep gully on the left). Notice the Sherburne Trail winding down to the Notch.The first time, we hiked up from the bottom on the Tuckerman Ravine Trail, and skied out on the Sherburne Ski Trail. Up in the early morning, out that afternoon. We hiked to ontop of the headwall that time, and made two or three runs that day.

The second year, we went much later in the spring, and were able to drive to the top of Mt. Washington on the Mount Washington Auto Road, parked at the top, and skied down to Tuckerman's on the upper snowfields (visible above Tuckerman's in the photo on the right).

That year, the headwall had a huge crevasse at the top, separating the headwall from the lip by about 10', so it was impossible to ski over the lip and onto the headwall that year.

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Tuckerman Ravine is a glacial cirque sloping eastward on the southeast face of Mt. Washington, in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Although it draws hikers throughout the year, and skiers throughout the winter, it is best known for the many "spring skiers" who ascend it on foot and ski down the steep slope from early April into July. In this period, the temperatures are relatively mild but the natural snowpack — which averages up to 55 feet (17 m) in a typical winter — is still adequate to ski most seasons. The record-setting high winds atop Mount Washington scour a massive amount of snow from the surrounding highlands and drop it here or in the adjacent Huntington Ravine.

Literally thousands of people have been known to ski Tuckerman in a single spring weekend. Skiing or ice climbing is not limited to this time, but the avalanche danger requires special training to assess and navigate the ravine safely during the winter. There have been 10 avalanche fatalities recorded (including one expert rescuer during a 1982 search) from 34 avalanche incidents in the area in the past 60 years.

The ravine is most easily accessed from the AMC lodge on Route 16 at Pinkham Notch, via the moderate 2.4-mile (3.9 km) lower section of the Tuckerman Ravine Trail. This trail is maintained in winter and spring as a "cat" trail, and parallels the Sherburne Trail used for ski and snowboard descents. It is a 1,850-foot (560 m) elevation drop from the foot of Tuckerman to the lodge.

tuckerman map-03-sm        tuckerman map-02-sm

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Tuckerman's St. Patrick's Day 2012 {flv}tuckermans_ravine_st_patricks_day_2012{/flv}
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Tuckerman's Ravine 4/9/2011

A day at the bowl, March 17, 2012. I wish the best of luck to the man airlifted out of the ravine that day. Music by the Glitch Mob, I do not own the music.

{flv}tuckermans_ravine_4_9_2011{/flv}
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Tuckerman Headwall Jumpers {flv}tuckerman_headwall_jumpers_2009{/flv}

Tuckerman's May 31, 2008

Tuckerman's ravine May 31, 2008, Ronnie Lees, Chris Lees, hike and ski during some extreme weather. MT. Washington New Hampshire back country skiing in almost June.

{mp4}tuckermans_ravine_may_31_2008{/mp4}
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Tuckerman Ravine

Sunny day in 2005 at Tuckerman's jumping the Ice Fall with Glenn Plake

{mp4}tuckerman_ravine{/mp4}
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Tuckerman Ravine jumping headwall {mp4}tuckerman_ravine_jumping_headwall{/mp4}

Tuckerman's Time Lapse

taken 4/9/11 from Lunch Rocks

{flv}tuckermans_ravine_time_lapse{/flv}
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Tuckerman's Ravine Inferno Race – 2008

Watch thru the end, best skiing in second half of video.

{mp4}tuckermans_inferno_2008{/mp4}
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New Hampshire Remembered III Part 3

This is the third installment of New Hampshire Remembered produced by Fritz Wetherbe and NH Public Televison back in the late 1990s.Its a look back at things and places that arent there anymore in New Hampshire. It includes old film footage and interviews with people who know what it was like "back then." This segment is about the old Inferno Race down Tuckermans Ravine in the White Mountains of NH.Enjoy!

{mp4}tuckerman_nh_remembered{/mp4}
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