Mount Washington

     Mt. Washington is known as "The home of the world's worst weather" and for good reason. It is common in the winter for wind speeds to hit 100+ mph, with wind chills as low as -50f, making this a real challenge and an unforgettable experience. Although this trip can be done on it's own, we highly recommend our intro to mountaineering course first to build your skills before your climb. Our intro to mountaineering course is often done the day before your summit attempt.

    We will meet at our Basecamp in Twin Mountain, NH at 7am where we will fill out our waivers and get geared up for the day. The day begins with a carpool to the trailhead at the base of Mount Washington.   After a quick gear check, we will begin ascending the less traveled Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail, passing several waterfalls along the way.  As the route gets steeper, we will put on our crampons and take out our ice axes to help us move in the snowy terrain.  We will take a short break at the Lake of the Clouds Hut to prepare for whatever weather Mount Washington throws at us.  A long, steady slog will get us to the summit cone, as we wind back and forth through the switchbacks on the West side of Mount Washington's summit cone.  After the demanding 4.0 mile hike we will reach the top of New England.  Take a few minutes to snap some photos and take in the view before descending back down the trail.   If conditions allow, the Ammonoosuc trail provides a full mile of glissading (fancy word for butt sliding) weaving through the trees on our way back to the trailhead.  After we return to basecamp, we will swap some stories around the hot or cold beverage of your choice as we turn in our gear. Once we turn in our gear, some folks chose to have a optional group dinner afterwards at one of the area's amazing eateries before saying their goodbyes.


Gear List

This is a required personal gear list for our Mount Washington ascents, you are responsible for bringing these items.  All technical gear is included (Ice axe, crampons, helmet, ropes) mountaineering boots and gaiters are available for rental, please be sure to reserve ahead to make sure we have the right size in stock.

Upper Body

 __ Base Layer : A good light to medium weight baselayer.  Only wool and synthetic blends will do.  This is one of your most important layers.

     -Guide Tip:  I prefer to wear a thin base layer on my top and bottom.  On really cold days, I'll add another thin to medium weight over it.

__ Over-Base Layer :  A mid weight fleece layer on cold days.  300 weight fleece will be too much.

 __ Insulation Layer : A thick fleece or soft shell.  Soft shells work the best as they are usually water and wind resistance.

     -Guide Tip: If you are planning on buying a softshell, one with a hood is worth the little extra.

__ Uninsulated Waterproof & Breathable Shell: A wind and waterproof layer.  Make sure it's non insulated or you might be too hot.

 __ Down of Synthetic Jacket: A beefy down or synthetic jacket to put on during breaks and in cold temperatures.

 Lower Body

__ Base Layer : A good light to medium weight base layer.  Only wool and synthetic blends will do.  This is one of your most important layers.

 -Guide Tip:  I prefer to wear a thin base layer on my top and bottom.  On really cold days, I'll add another thin to medium weight over it.

 __ Over-Base Layer :  A mid weight fleece layer on cold days.  300 weight fleece will be too much.

 __ Uninsulated Waterproof & Breathable Shell : A wind and waterproof layer.  Make sure it's non insulated or you might be too hot.

Head and Face

__ Fleece or Wool Hat: A good hat is a must.  Make sure your ears are covered and the hat is made of fleece or wool.

 __ Balaclava: This is essential.  High winds and cold temps on the mountain can give you frostnip or frostbite quickly.

 -Guide Tip: I suggest one with a neoprene face mask that is fleece on the neck and head.

 __ Ski Goggles (2 Pair): Not having ski goggles is a "no go".  A second pair is a good choice as sometimes goggles ice up.

 -Guide Tip: Keep your goggles in a sock in a dry spot in your pack.  When you put them on, keep them on.  Don't put them on your head as they tend to freeze up from the sweat.

Hands and Feet

__ Liner Gloves: A lightweight pair of fleece or wool liner gloves.  These will help your hands stay warm if you need to remove your thick glove/mittens for pictures, boot laces, etc.

__ Gloves: A thick pair of waterproof gloves

__Mittens: A thick pair of mittens will help keep your hands warm on the coldest of days.  Sometimes on Mt. Washington the temps get below –50 with the wind chill.

__ Wool Socks: A thick pair of wool socks (EMS Summit socks, Smartwool Mountaineering).  If you are known to have blister issues, a thin liner sock can help reduce blsters.

__ Mountaineering Boots: Double plastic mountaineering boots are best for the bitter temps in the White Mountains.  We have a line of mountaineering boots available for rental for $35 for the first day, $10 each additional.  If you are planning on buying a pair, please give me a call at (978)944-2885 to make sure they will work and we will answer any questions. This is not the item to cut corners on, boots can make or break a trip.

__Gaiters: A pair of knee high gaiters.  These will help save your pants from ripping while learning to use crampons. $10 for 1 day, $5 each additional day

Gear

__Backpack:  A backpack that will fit all the days gear.  Make sure it's rugged and has a sternum and waist strap. 30 liters is a good size for Mount Washington

 __ Headlamp: Make sure you have a good headlamp with a fresh set of batteries, as well as an extra set of batteries. It's never a bad idea to have a small inexpensive backup headlamp. Sometimes these trips end in the dark.

 __ Lunch: Make sure you bring enough food and snacks for the day.  Something quick and easy that's also high in calories. I usually bring a hearty sandwich as well as a couple snickers bars.

 __ First Aid Kit: A basic first aid kit

 __ Sunblock: spf 30+

Optional Items

__ Camera

 __ Light-weight thermos

 __ Water bottle insulator

 __ Hand/ foot warmers

 __ Trekking Poles

 __ Multi-Tool/Pocket knife

 __ Duct Tape (great for rips in clothing and blisters on feet)


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Pricing

Group Rates

$160 One person

$150 Two people (each person)

$140 Three people (each person)

$125 Four people (each person)

Max guide ratio 1:4, 2 person minimum to run

Private Rates

$250 One person

$175 Two people (each person)

$150 Three people (each person)

$125 Four people (each person)

Max guide ratio 1:4, No minimum to run.




Difficulty


  Although not technically difficult, all participants should be physically fit and prepared for a long day in the mountains. Climbers should be able to carry a 25 pd. pack for 8+ hours.



Testimonials


“Intro to Mountaineering/Mount Washington Climb”

Reviewed January 11, 2016

 "Jamie does a two day Intro to Mountaineering/Mount Washington climb that I took in January of 2016. The first day was mostly about gear and technique, learning to use crampons and an ice axe. We did a lot of drills learning to self-arrest while sliding, and walking techniques with the crampons that made a huge difference the next day.
  On the second day we attempted a climb of Mt. Washington, but unseasonably wet weather, combined with +70mph winds (at the summit) ended our ascent just at the treeline before Lake of the Clouds. The weather was some of the most brutal I've ever experienced, and Jamie and Sean made the right call and we all understood and appreciated it.
  Overall it was a fantastic experience, Jamie is an excellent and patient teacher and an engaging guide. Would highly recommend.
  As a side note, for anyone hoping to do the Mt. Washington climb, you should be able to carry a 25lb pack up a 4000 foot climb with heavy, restrictive clothes and gear on, with enough energy at the end to endure a punishing and technical descent. Though the group will move slowly, if you're out of shape it will be worth it to spend some time preparing, which will greatly improve your chances of the group making the summit."

Matt J.

“Winter Climb”

Reviewed March 28, 2015

  "Thanks to Jamie, Kevin and the rest of the team at Northridge for an awesome weekend of training and climbing. The weather proved to be typical Mt. Washington weather. They don't call it the home of the worlds worst weather for nothing. Training in very mild pleasant conditions, mid 30's, sunny, little wind. Climbing on Sunday in extreme cold, high winds, windchill -28 or thereabouts. Even though I have climbed before in hash conditions out west, the climb Sunday was more than I expected. Thanks to Jaimie and Kevin I was prepared for the worst, As a senior I was not sure how I would perform. Saturday's training gave me the confidence to attempt the climb on Sunday. Even though the summit was out of reach because of the weather the climb on Sunday was great! We got as far as we could and turned around when we could go no further. Just as we had discussed beforehand. Kevin is the ultimate professional! Knowledgeable, congenial, concerned about his clients, He made my weekend the best it could be. If anyone is thinking about mountain climbing or ice climbing I would not look any further for a guide group. You will be very pleased should you selected North Ridge as your guides. I am planning on climbing with them in the future."

Jim L.





Meeting Location

North Ridge Mountain Guides White Mountains Basecamp

529 U.S. Route 3 South

Twin Mountain NH, 03595

 

Important Information

Full payment is required when scheduling. Any cancellations over 30 days of your adventure will receive a full refund. Any cancellations within 30 days of your adventure will be credited as NRMG credit . Within 7 days of your adventure, no refunds or rescheduling will be allowed.  Any weather related cancellations from NRMG will include a credit for another trip.  As professional mountain guides, our cancellation policy helps with our guides job security.  There is no guarantee of reaching the summit, as peoples physical fitness and the weather on Mt. Washington can be a factor.  Our job is to provide a safe and fun experience for everyone.  If a summit is high on your list, consider a private climb.  Must sign waiver. Subject to weather. 14+ with parent/legal guardians signature required.