2007-11-24 15:20:25.000 – Lynn Metcalf,  Former Summit Lynntern

Sunrise shinning through deck rails

For the second day in a row, I rose at 6:30 to witness the sunrise. It was crystal clear outside, with a view much more worthy of leaving a warm bunk than yesterday’s; however, the weather was not quite hospitable. When I first stepped out onto the deck and into the 60mph winds, I realized that I had lost my “wind legs”, which is perhaps the Mount Washington equivalent of sea legs. The wind chill was 35 below while I traversed the summit, snapping photos. After reveling in the beauty of the summit covered in snow and ice, I ran into Brian out doing his hourly observation. As I sit now, basking in the warmth of the observatory I contemplate returning to the valley (and New York) tomorrow.

The thought of leaving my mountaintop home again, not knowing when I shall return makes me a little sad. Then again, I suppose that is what life is all about: constantly moving forward, not knowing where the next trail shall lead you, and fondly remembering the roads already traveled. I shall always have the fondest memories of Mount Washington, where time doesn’t move slower, but – rather – differently. Sunday leads me back to the hustle and bustle of a college-city in full holiday swing. When I return to my stacks of books, I must remember that my experiences at Mount Washington will not be my last great ones. There is much in store ahead of me, although I cannot say what. I am reminded of an excerpt from a poem by Robert W. Service:

Thank God! there is always a Land of Beyond
     For us who are true to the trail;
A vision to seek, a beckoning peak,
     A farness that never will fail;
A pride in our soul that mocks at a goal,
     A manhood that irks at a bond,
And try how we will, unattainable still,
     Behold it, our Land of Beyond!
       -Robert W. Service, The Land Beyond

In life there is always more to see and more to do, one never has to settle for the mundane. My time at the Obs has taught me that.


Lynn Metcalf,  Former Summit Lynntern

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