and no one ever goes to see it as an adult. It's been about 50 years since I first saw the top of Mt. Washington. Then, it was an obligatory trip that you took the kids to. enerally you went up the Cog Railway,
or if you were brave you drove up the AutoRoad. We drove, but at the time, I was much more entranced by my cousins who were taking me than by the mountain itself. Amazing what 50 years will do. I was recently asked by SkyNews to provide a brief video introduction to New Hampshire as part of their coverage of the US Presidential Elections. Given all the possible places in New Hamsphire I could film the segment, it seemed most logical (if not the most convenient) to do it on Mt. Washington. approached Howie Wemyss of the Mt. Washington Auto Road,
for help and he was most obliging. When asked if I wanted a van, I quickly said yes, since, if truth be told, I'm the one who has to sit on the far side of the car if we're driving up the coastal highway in California. I'm terrified of cliffs, steep drop offs etc, so was very happy to have Rick, a 26-year veteran of the mouontain on hand to take us to the optimum location I borrowed a camera, corralled Sue Sturtevant,
one of my colleagues at KDPaine & Partners to be the official videographer, and we were good to go. After a week of rain and fog, the weather gods were clealry trying to disprove the mountains repuation for "the worst weather on earth." It was a spectacularly clear day. Rick kept calling it 'hazy' but other than not quite being able to see the Atlantic Ocean, it looked perfect to me.
Which posed the first challenge. The light was so bright and clear that we needed to find some shade to complete our shoot. And of course there was the wind. Mt. Washington is famous for its wind gusts, and while Friday was a remarkably calm day, there was still enough of it to impact the sound for our taping. We set out with a video camera, two cell-phone cameras and two still cameras -- determined to capture every image we could. and Sue and I spent a rather amusing hour lugging all this stuff around, trying out various nooks and crannies, to find a spot sufficiently out of the glare and the wind. In the process I put down my glasses and of course immediately lost them in the ground cover.Just imagine trying to find a pair of thing gold framed glasses here:
Unbelievably, after about 20 minutes of retracing our steps and trying to remember where we'd been, they turned up. Just as the battery on the camera was about to die, we found a small depression in a large rock outcropping. With me wedgegd into the lowest spot and Sue balancing on the edge we did one last take, which of course was the perfect one. Then, since we were half way there, we took a run up to the very top.
The most amazing thing was to look down at the outcropping where we'd done the shoot:
We'll post a link to the Sky News app as soon as it's ready. But in the mean time, if you haven't been up the AutoRoad recently, I'd highly recommend it. Unlike the scary dirt road it was when I was ten, it is mostly paved these days. Even so, I'd recommend taking the van. You'll spend much more time appreciating the scenery, and the history and stories that you hear are way more fun.