Volunteer thoughts…

2008-08-18 14:41:40.000 – Cay Everest,  Summit Volunteer

61 Stairs…

Having spent the last 122 hours and 22 minutes at the summit of Mount Washington with the Mount Washington Observatory staff, I have an enriched appreciation of their efforts. I am just now acclimated to breathing 20% less 0xygen and can climb the 61 stairs to the Observatory tower without being winded. I have been lucky to draw a good partner in Rob who has (patiently) taught me much about cooking.n

nThe staff has shared their excitement by encouraging us to interact more closely with the weather. We have stood in winds blowing 60 mph (3½ times less than the 231 mph record set in 1934) and have been pummeled by hail. Oh by the way, we have enjoyed endless sunshine, warm temperatures and sunsets with beauty beyond my description. n

nMy life here is humble and I focus on conservation in every aspect of my responsibility. We recycle and reuse everything before we reluctantly throw something away. Even then it is compacted to save space.n

nThe historical experience has been impressive. I have walked trails cut hundreds of years ago and imagined those who have come before me. I have stood on rock shaped by eons of glacial time. I have contemplated locations where people have perished, sometimes a few hundred from the safety of the summit. My reading and research has become more complete with the experience of the physical opportunities. Descriptions in “The White Hills”, “History of the White Mountains” and “AMC White Mountain Guide 28th Edition” have been enhanced and Nicholas Howe’s “Not Without Peril” has touched me. Peter Crane (Director of Programs Mount Washington Observatory) wrote praise and was referenced many times in the book. Peter has been in twice and participated in web casts with interested groups.n

nThis has been a life molding experience and I continue working to improve my cooking and cribbage skills.n

nObserver Note: See more of our volunteer’s words and pictures from the week here!

 

Cay Everest,  Summit Volunteer

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