2009-03-10 11:19:16.000 – Dick Lindstrom, Summit Volunteer
Home of the Worlds Worst Weather!
As my tenth annual winter volunteer week on the summit winds down, I have to reflect on what a wonderful, incredible experience this is. This week we’ve seen 80 plus mile visibility and 10 foot visibility. Winds have approached 100 MPH for hours at a time and dropped to near zero at times. Temperatures have ranged from -16 to + 36 F. But the experience is much more than the weather extremes. For the first four days of the shift, we were hosting a group of 14 German students and their leaders who were experiencing the summit and conducting experiments ranging from improved methods for measuring snowfall in high winds to digging, instrumenting, and sleeping in a large snow cave in the Yankee Building drift. It was a real pleasure to hear the presentations of their work on their final evening here.
Since the primary function of volunteers is to plan and provide meals for the guests, those days with the German group were busy, hectic hard work but it was rewarding to see them enjoy the meals and snacks as well as have fun and fellowship with them. Immediately following the departure of the Germans, we hosted a group of 9 hikers for an overnight. As usual the work involved in providing their meals was more than offset by meeting new friends and exchanging stories of the mountains. On Monday we hosted a media group who were doing some staff interviews and video filming outside. We provided food to fortify them against the wintry conditions outside.
I was glad to have the opportunity to work with Gates Ingram, an avid skier and hiker who now resides in San Diego but returned to his New Hampshire roots to spend this week on the Rockpile. As usual the OBS staff on the shift Steve, Stacey, Mike and Jordan were great people to work with.
Dick Lindstrom, Summit Volunteer