Archive | January, 2010

Mountain Magazine, 1973

MP3: Aretha Franklin – Climbing Higher Mountains

January 28, 2010 | Magazines/Catalogs/Advertisements | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }

Save The Redwoods

“Any fool can destroy trees. They cannot defend themselves or run away. And few destroyers of trees ever plant any; nor can planting avail much toward restoring our grand aboriginal giants. It took more than three thousand years to make some of the oldest of the Sequoias, trees that are still standing in perfect strength and beauty, waving and singing in the mighty forests of the Sierra. Through all the eventful centuries since Christ’s time, and long before that, God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand storms; but he cannot save them from sawmills and fools; this is left to the American people.” – John Muir

January 28, 2010 | Quotes/Poetry | Continue Reading | Comments { 3 }

Documerica: Dennis Cowals

I’ve previously written about Documerica and David Hiser’s contribution to the 1970s EPA project. The photos above (there are more after the jump) are from Dennis Cowals, who, from 1973 to 1974, documented sites of the future Alaskan Pipeline from the ground and from the air. His photographs are of the pre-pipeline Alaska wilderness from Prudhoe Bay south to Valdez.

Continue Reading →

January 27, 2010 | Art/Photography | Continue Reading | Comments { 3 }

The Big Wind

Sad news. New Hampshire’s Mount Washington has officially lost its distinction as the site of the fastest wind gust ever recorded on Earth. On April 12, 1934, 231 mph winds graced the top of the mountain, the highest point in the Eastern United States. Before the Europeans arrived, Mount Washington was known as Agiocochook, or “home of the Great Spirit.”

Three days ago, the World Meteorological Organization posted a snippet on its website saying a panel of experts reviewing extreme weather and climate data turned up a 253 mph gust on Australia’s Barrow Island during Cyclone Olivia in 1996.

“It’s obviously a big disappointment. Having the world record for over six decades was such a part of the soul of this organization and for fans of Mount Washington around the country,” said Scot Henley, the Mount Washington Observatory’s executive director.

Mount Washington still holds the record for the Northern and Western hemispheres. Although that doesn’t sound nearly as cool as the title it lost, the “highest wind gust ever recorded on the surface of the Earth by means of an anemometer.” (via)

January 27, 2010 | Uncategorized | Continue Reading | Comments { 3 }

The Scout

The Scout is a bronze statue of Buffalo Bill Cody outside the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyoming. The project was initiated by Cody’s niece and was sculpted by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney in 1924. The statue stands on a large stone base, meant to represent nearby Cedar Mountain, which Cody chose as his gravesite. Unfotunately, Cody was buried, against his wishes, at Lookout Mountain in Colorado.

The statue’s full title is Buffalo Bill – The Scout and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.

January 26, 2010 | Uncategorized | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }


MP3: Mahavishnu Orchestra: Meeting Of The Spirits

January 26, 2010 | Uncategorized | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }


It’s very probable that the desert canteens, first aid kits, WWII mechanic sweaters, henleys and backpacks at your local army surplus store were made by Long Island’s Rothco. The company started in Manhattan over 50 years ago and is now “America’s foremost wholesale supplier of military and outdoor products.” Whether or not that’s true, I don’t know, but they sure do make some damn handsome camping gear. And I’m sure their canteens are BPA free…

January 25, 2010 | Uncategorized | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }

Outdoor Retailer

I spent the weekend driving back and forth between Salt Lake City and Park City, stuffing my face with food, drooling over various camping/hiking this and thats and meeting the great people that I’ve been emailing with over the past few years of this Cold Splinters thing. It was an exciting couple of days.

One thing I didn’t anticipate was the baby/puppy effect that my Vasques (not the Sundowners, but the pair pictured above in their original Ebay glamour shot) were going to have while walking the floor at OR. As much as I really don’t want to admit that or even recognize it, it was pretty amazing how many people started conversation with me because of those boots.

You’d think that if a pair of boots had such an effect on a group of campers/hikers/guys with kilts/nerds, then maybe a certain company would bring some old models back into their mix…

January 25, 2010 | Uncategorized | Continue Reading | Comments { 6 }

Eustace Conway

Eustace Conway painting by Michael Gaughan

January 25, 2010 | Uncategorized | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }


On the way to and from climbing last weekend, we repeatedly passed North Conway, NH’s one-stop shop for climbing and all things outdoors, International Mountain Equipment Inc. Opened in 1974, IME was bought in 1979 by Rick Wilcox, who has been president of the Mountain/Rescue Service, Inc. of New Hampshire, served as secretary to the American Alpine Club under three presidents and for six years was a director of the American Mountain Guides Association. He knows his climbing.

IME’s ground level and upstairs are filled with an amazing selection of climbing gear, camping gear and Tibetan prayer flags and garments, but to be completely honest, it was the little red corner of the store’s sign that made me want to get out of the car. The bottom floor of IME is a consignment shop, filled with old hiking boots, vintage backpacks from deceased New Hampshire and Maine outdoor companies and loads of clothes. And the stuff is cheap. Real cheap. Much to my dismay, my camera decided to stop working for a few hours because of the cold it was exposed to on the mountain, so I couldn’t grab any photos, but if you’re around that area anytime in the near future, don’t forget to poke your head in and leave with a pair of wafflestompers the size of your face.

January 21, 2010 | Uncategorized | Continue Reading | Comments { 2 }