2011-06-19 14:36:56.000 – Peter Strand,  Summit Intern

Mini Coopers emerging from the fog

I think it’s safe to say that the summer season has begun! The children are out of school and people from all over the country are traveling to beautiful Mount Washington. This weekend was especially busy. Thousands of families, pets and robots visited the summit and were treated to a myriad of different weather conditions. From sunny skies to thunderstorms, from calm winds to hurricane force winds, we saw it all. Not to mention the many activities that took place here.

Saturday morning the mountain played host to the 51st annual Mount Washington Road Race. Covering 7.6 miles, and gaining over 4,500 ft of elevation, this race is not for the faint of heart. Runners began at the base of the mountain under thick fog, only to emerge into the bright sunshine at the summit. Ricky Gates of Woody Creek, CO won the race with a time of 1:01:32 (that’s 1 hour and 1 minute). The first female finisher was Kim Dobson of Denver, CO with a time of 1:12:11. The top finisher from New Hampshire was Justin Freeman, who finished eighth. Here’s the scene from the top.

Saturday night the mountain was overtaken by a small army of Mini Coopers. Over 250 Minis of different colors and themes from across the country drove up the see the sunset for the annual Minis On Top event. Similar to the Road Race, this event started off in the clouds, only to clear up just in time for a beautiful sunset. We would also like to thank the roughly 50 Mini drivers who took the time to tour the Observatory. Your interest is greatly appreciated.

Sunday we had yet another special event. As occasionally happens, the Auto Road opened at 3:30am too allow visitors the chance to catch a sunrise. Despite winds in the high 60s and temperatures in the low 30s, visitors braved the cold and wind in order to catch a beautiful sunrise.

Remember that the summit is open all week long. Come visit us and don’t forget to take an Observatory Tour!


Peter Strand,  Summit Intern

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