Reminiscing on Good Memories
2015-07-02 16:25:32.000 – Charlie and Jeanine Kinney, Summit Volunteers
It is now July and the last day of our first summer week volunteering here in several years. A mere two days to go until a significant day in our history. We have enjoyed, as always, the uniqueness of this place including watching the waves of tourists arriving daily. The weather, as changeable as ever, still provided time for a hike to the Lakes of the Clouds hut which I hadn’t visited in some time.
The most important aspect of this trip, however, became the flood of memories associated with the “Rock Pile”. The first serious hike our families made was with Al and Marion Lake, long time volunteers here, to the Lakes of the Clouds hut. The very reason we started volunteering was because of their stories. Some memories include watching the Cog Railway
arrive each day without the plumes of smoke of yesteryear; the romance of riding a steam train gone but a good environmental decision overall; chatting with a couple of Auto Road
drivers who have become friends, remembering riding up in a fifties vintage Ford Station wagon, and standing at the State Park desk looking at a large segment of cable realizing the electric power comes from the valley now. No more drone from generators running outside of the Yankee building before 2002 and only occasionally inside the Sherman Adams building entrance since. Gone are the days of Marty Engstrom airing the weather from the summit. The crew at State Park changes as well, but many of them are old friends. It is always fun to stretch the facts of our last great adventure. Possibly the greatest surprise this week was an evening visit with the Obs staff and a group of visiting meteorologists, some who we knew from their internships here years ago. Yes, it is soon the Forth of July, where did the time go? With every new day our circle of friends continues to grow. The weather continues to evade and confuse, resisting normalcy. The “Rock Pile” is still here though; it is constantly morphing. Mount Washington is, at best, a diverse and multi-faceted place but change is inevitable, just another chapter in “Life’s lessons”. We learn and grow through change. The “Old Man of the Mountain” may have fallen off but MWO forges on. Thanks to all the folks at Mount Washington Observatory for yet another great week and we look forward to the next.
Charlie and Jeanine Kinney, Summit Volunteers