Airplanes and mountains

2006-11-17 13:06:40.000 – Jon Cotton,  Observer


South winds always bring something interesting and different to the routine of walking outside. The tower door onto the deck faces east. Normally quite sheltered from the prevailing west winds, a south wind hits hard from the side. Tonight was very dark and my first step outside every hour was basically a step into blackness trying to brace myself appropriately from getting slammed into the A-frame. That said, the winds were alright tonight but not high enough. We were all hoping to hit a 100. 88 is a good looking number but nothing to write a web comment about.

Neil and I were looking at a product catalog today for a clear film window heater. Shopping tangents were taken to pressure fittings, strip heaters, and tubing. But transparent stick-on window heaters would do wonderful things up here. One item discovered was something designed for aircraft cockpits. The correlation between Mt Washington needs and aircraft requirements are often quite aligned. Our primary anemometer is crafted for airplanes flying through ice clouds at 30,000 feet for example.

Just such thinking led Neil to say, ‘This building should really be an airplane. We should get an airplane and put it somewhere on the summit’. Not bad thinking. The summit manager when I first started working here often (especially on rainy days and in melting season) compared the (leaking) tower to a (seaworthy) boat. A plane would be easier to get up here though. So we might just be in the market. We’ll tie it to the deck, extricate any snakes, and enjoy our view out heated windows at a cruising altitude of 6288. Thank you for flying MWO airlines.


Jon Cotton,  Observer

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