when death comes like an iceberg between the shoulder blades, I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering; what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness? And therefore I look upon everything as a brotherhood and a sisterhood, and I look upon time as no more than an idea, and I consider eternity as another possibility, and I think of each life as a flower, as common as a field daisy, and as singular, and each name a comfortable music in the mouth tending as all music does, toward silence, and each body a lion of courage, and something precious to the earth. Mary Oliver
It was another mild day on Mt. LeConte. The high was 36. The low was 27. It was 31 and clear at observation. Phil saw his shadow, so we have another brutal 6 weeks of winter. I don't know if I can make it. I almost had to put on a shirt to go running yesterday. Brrr!
I can't believe there's only 4 more weeks of 'winter' caretaking left! I've been too focused on what is coming next (at section hikes, where I'll be inspector of wildflowers and/or snowstorms next, the freedom of the open road, the incomparably congenial warmth of seeing old friends etc.) that the passage of time has slipped by me like a thief in the night. I'd be a poor night sentry, as my head is perpetually in the clouds. A wise man once said, Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans.
2/3/2012 01:26:06 am
JP will you be coming back next winter. It has been a pleasure reading your posts and seeing your photos from Mt. LeConte.
2/3/2012 01:29:27 am
For those curious about the weather here is a chart http://www.mtleconte.com/Weather.htm that gives from the 70'slast thru
2/3/2012 01:31:41 am
Congratulations on the new job! I know it is a dream come true!
2/3/2012 02:40:33 am
Hey-maybe next year you could be winter caretaker at Mt Washington-heard they get a bit of winter up top of that mountain.
Hickory, NC Trekker
2/3/2012 02:52:22 am
"Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans."
2/3/2012 04:54:21 am
Cancelled our reservations for tomorrow night. Weather looks too nasty. Just called the backcountry office, he said that he has 2 groups of 6 every saturday for the next month in the shelter. JP are you seeing the shelter full all weekend? Is a guide service filling up the shelter, or is someone snagging the spots and doling them out somewhere else?
tomk in NW SC
2/3/2012 05:51:43 am
Great question, OPIE. Given that reservation are free, if someone was good at snagging spots, (perhaps an insider) slots could be snagged on spec, on the bet that slots could be used with a guide service. If the slots went unused, no penalty to the savvy snagger. The downside is that people committed to hiking and staying are locked out. I'm thinking the NPS should ask JP to count noggins at the shelter, radio to the NPS and cancel fwd reservations AND lock the reserver out for a year.
2/3/2012 11:44:46 pm
If you have a reservation at the shelter, can you put up a tent at the shelter?
2/3/2012 06:39:27 am
Anyway......beautiful pictures once again JP! Love the first picture with the trees, trail and the sun coming thru. Always enjoy seeing your pictures first thing every morning. Thanks for sharing.
2/3/2012 07:47:50 am
I still think posting a sign at all trailheads, NO (TENT) CAMPING ON TRAIL OR ON MT LECONTE or you will be asked to leave!! ,maybe that would help!!
2/3/2012 04:16:05 pm
tomk & James W said it right ! those rule breakers can ruin it for others; more stringent enforcement is definitely needed; I've run into this problem several times while hiking the A.T. through the Park, especially at the shelters closest to Newfound Gap and Clingman's Dome; Yes, JP, not many more weeks remaining; I'm planning on helping with the airlift when that occurs; looking forward to it. A-salamu Alaykum !!
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