>> Sunday, April 30, 2006
I have this print hanging in my office, and is an inspiration to me, particularly when I've had a hard day and need a little pick-me-up. I had walked across that same rocky summit last Autumn! The photographer, Carl Heilman has done an incredible job of catching this view. If you click on that picture, it'll take you to the page of his site where it's located. He gives a synopsis of when and how he was able to capture such beauty. This picture was taken from the summit of Cascade Mountain, the 36th highest, with an elevation of 4098 ft. If you look to the left of that sunrise, just to the left of the little puddle on the rock; and let your eyes follow straight up (from the puddle) to that mountain range, that "tiny" peak you see to the farthest left, is Whiteface, the 5th highest of the "High Peaks" in the Adirondacks; with an elevation of 4867 ft. In addition to that, if you follow your eyes to the right of that mass of Green, (Porter Mountain, 38th highest and 4059 ft.) the 3rd peak from the right is Mount Marcy, the highest Peak in the Adirondacks, with an elevation of 5344 ft. Carl Heilman has an incredible "virtual" panoramic view that you can scroll yourself. Check it out, it truly is something to see! If you were to follow a line drawn from that sunrise down between Porter and Cascade Mountains to the bottom, that would be Lake Placid. I had stayed at The Van Hoevenberg Cabins, which is located right across from the Olympic Ski Jump. The owner, Wayne Failing, is also a licensed Adirondack Guide and also owns and runs Middle Earth Expeditions, an Adirondack Whitewater Rafting Company. Great Guy! That photograph above is also hanging in his den.
Now, seeing those 'tiny' peaks may not seem like much, unless one is familiar with the layout of these 'high peaks'. Cascade and Porter Mountains are approximately 22 miles away from those other peaks! Many Adirondack vistas are photographed from Cascade, it is the only spot where one can see 26 of the 46 'high peaks', as well as several peaks that do not reach that lofty status. BTW - in order to be considered a 'high peak', a mountain has to be over 4000 ft. in elevation. To give a reference point, most people are aware of Bald Mountain in Old Forge, and many have climbed it. That elevation is 2350 ft. What I do find of interest is that the Adirondack 46r club actually lists four peaks that are just shy of 4000 ft. This was because the 'original' founders did not have accurate measuring devices, like we do today.
Yes it is a breathtaking view, but this view holds a more personal meaning to me, as mentioned above, I've walked right across that same Summit. I had also 'bagged' Porter too. That was a term I had recently learned, "Peak Bagging"! Granted, both Cascade and Porter are considered the 'easier' of the '46rs' , but neither are something to sniff your nose at; especially since this was my first try at a "high peak".
Suffice it to say that I've been bitten by the "high peak" bug! Though I don't have any plans to become part of the illustrious and elite 46r group, I have been inspired to try another peak or two! I have plans to spend a week in the 'Dacks this coming Fall. And what a deal I got!!!
For those who may not be familiar, there is a domestic violence shelter that serves Onondaga County, called Vera House. A much needed service for this community, and relies heavily on donations and funding sources. I have a friend who, has been actively involved with this shelter, over the years. Her involvement, though behind the scenes, has been very instrumental to not only the decision making and mission statement of this agency, but has been heavily involved in obtaining the financial resources to help keep this operating. One such 'event' is their yearly Auction. It ends up being a pretty decent turnout with several community officals in the midst, and they raise quite a bit for this shelter. I had attended the past 2 years, and this year put a bid on a week long stay at a cabin in the Adirondacks.....and I won the bid!!! At such an incredible steal! It has four bedrooms, all with queen size beds, 2 bathrooms, fireplace and large front porch! Even the professional auctioneer had come up to me at the end to comment that I got the deal of the evening! I can't wait to go back up there. I know I plan on trying another Peak, I'm just not sure which one yet. I might try either Big Slide or Saddleback. I would love to try Gothics but think this may be too challenging for me! We'll see. Which ever one we choose to climb, rest assured, I'll be blogging about it! It was such a 'high' to stand on top of those summits, with the wind blowing so fiercely, you were almost lifted off the ground. Looking forward to a repeat performance!