Spungie Day II (2nd Annual): Logistics

Any planning ideas/decisions can go in the comments - I'll move them to this main article. I believe tMail had established the basics:

- Massholes to meet at 6:30am at [location]
- All hikers to meet in the parking area on the east side of Rte 93 in Franconia Notch at the trailhead for the Bridal Path/Falling Waters. Meet at 8:15 - 8:30am.
- The Route is the same as last year: Slog down the rec trail to Liberty Springs Trail, hit Franconia Ridge heading north. Return via the OBP.

Weather: There is currently a wind-chill 'advisory' in effect which upgrades to a 'warning' by tomorrow morning:

In the clouds w/ a slight chance of snow showers. Wind chills remaining 45-55 below. Highs: struggle to around 5 below°F Wind: NW 60-80 mph increasing to 85-105 mph w/ higher gusts.

Speaking for myself and tMail, this seems like a good, challenging hike.

[Update 1/2/09, 7pm] The route has been reversed: up the OBP, south on the ridge to either Falling Waters or Liberty Springs, depending on conditions. Meeting time at the trailhead is 8:15-8:30, boys from Mass to probably be in two cars.

[Update 1/3/09, 5:15am] unlike thursday, the weather will be getting worse over the course of the day:
Highs: around 0 falling through the day to around 10 below°F
Wind: NW 60-80 mph increasing to 85-105 mph w/ higher gusts

the wind chill advisory becomes a warning at noon.


  1. Given the winds and cold, my $0.02 is to do the ridge from Lafayette and then South to Liberty. A full ridge traverse in those wind chill conditions is gonna be challenging enough as it is so might has well have the winds to our backs as much as possible.

  2. g-$$$, very good point. some things to consider: heading into the cold wind causes more goggle icing too.

    however, ascending lafayette means doing a final gear change at the Greenleaf hut and then doing the final ascent w/ full battle armor (incl. goggles).

    i wonder which is worse?

    note to group: i've gotten pretty damned good at SLOWING DOWN on those ascents, so i may be happily holding up the rear.

  3. muthaz, good point as well...my thinking is that stretch from greenleaf to lafayette is a lot like the final push up the summit cone on the Bad Boy, perhaps a bit longer but just as steep and just as exposed but must be done in full battle gear during most winter days. generally having the wind at our back, even for a steep climb portion in full gear, plays more into our favor given the group size, varied experience level, and the extreme conditions.

    you know my pace will be steady but slow (relative to this group) so we may be fighting for the caboose slot.

  4. I think the G-$$$ route of doing Lafayette first is good...

    1. We have large area to change will not battle for spots with other climbers.

    2. for those that change fast just walk around the hut.

    3. slow ascent up lafayette we all leave together from hut...

    4. if it is hell on earth on lafayette and ridge we just turn around (similiar to bad boy training)...if we get there.

    5. take every advantage we can if that means wind at our backs at least not in our face.

    6. i was humbled yesterday in a BIG way...

  5. Excellent. I agree on all points. And Spungie can lead the charge on Lafayette. Spungie! Spungie!

  6. Happy f-ing New Year!

    Let us be reminded that although we live to the preparedness of the Boy Scout motto, these temps and conditions can kill.


    I like the route choice and am all about a game time "ridge run" decision at the summit of Lafayette.

    Not that I am thinking we are headed for death but serious frostbite and nerve damage to fingers and toes is a reality (as you guys just experienced the other day.) And, to an earlier point on the blog, God forbid someone twists a knee or something out in conditions like these.

  7. tMail and I have it figured out. PM, if you crack your knee, we put your pack on you backwards so you're hugging it (w/ the belt around your back and the shoulder straps and sternum strap attached). You lay on your back in your gortex shell with the hood up. We run a rope through the shoulder straps and drag you head-first off the mountain while you scream until the pain and the cold send you into a state of shock.

  8. Oh yeh, and we'll use your poles to stabilize the leg.

  9. At least I know what I have to look forward to... I would just leave you with the porno mag and handgun that I pack for the cold days!

  10. Great day out. Impressive resolve and determination from everyone - that was not a walk in the park!

    Thanks to Spungie for hauling us North in the Bus and making the day what it is - SPUNGIE DAY! Never seen a more controlled bottle pee in my life!

    Thanks to Keith for the delicious beer, the call for "real" pee stops and the "customer call" (Mutha will have fun with that last one!)

    Thanks to Mutha for showing me his new N/S finder, agreeing that a beard is a good balaclava as they make, and leading us across that cursed path of death.

    Thanks to TMail for the sweet goods and not taking a picture when I was creating my own version of the prop used in "Two Girls and a Bowl."

    Thanks to Rainbow Bob for his calming nature and steady persona - does anything shake this guy?! Kathadin in Feb (hmmm?!)

    Thanks to G$ for making the N to S call early, that surely saved us some serious pain!!! And thanks for the G$ war whoop - what's a day out without at least one?!

    And finally, thanks to the Mountain Gods for allowing us a safe passage to weather their fearsome blows!

    PICS POSTED - http://picasaweb.google.com/puppetmaster64/SpungieDay2009#

  11. G-$$$ great call on the reverse route, downhill with the winds on our backs was the way to go. PM the pictures are intense. Great job by all

  12. Spungie Day 2009

    1. What a difference 15-20 minutes can make on a summit

    2. Great job by all on the hike, regarding battle gear, pace, communication.

    3. The antics in the Spungie Bus were great I will leave it at that

    4. Cat crap works wonders on the goggles (not actual Cat Crap)

    5. Moisture management continues to be the mantra

    6. Mountain Rescue came through yet again.

    7. Cell phones work on OBP just before tree line

    8. Going down falling water is so much better

    9. Seeing 5 other people in front of me getting blown over was AWESOME

    10. Looking forward to Spungie Day III and Bad Boy in coming weeks.