Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mt, Washington, Mt. Washington Stage Line, Glen, NH, Cog Railway, Bretton Woods, NH

This is the start of something great. The Mt. Washington Auto Road.   Unfortunately, the mountain is covered over in fog which it is most of the time. The weather up there is terrible, in fact it is often called the "world's worst weather."  The weather can change in a matter of minutes.  I know, I've been up there with Susan and Rob.  I can tell you a story that was handed down to me.  Years ago when Rob and Susan first visited the White Mountains, they waited all week for the fog to burn off.  On their last day in the area, Rob called to see if the weather had actually cleared up and was told that it was finally clear.  That's when  the two of them jumped in their car and made the long 45 minute trip from one end of Kangamangus Pass to the other end only to find out that it had gotten foggy again.  They did go up that day, but have been to the top of Mt. Washington many times since then.

Here I am buying my ticket for Mt. Washington Stage Line.  Around the time these pictures were taken, Susan and Rob had a Saturn, which was not allowed to go up the Auto Road, so we opted for the Stage Line.  You can spot me on one of their vans down below.

The stage lines going up the Auto Road were just that: horse drawn coaches used to climb this perilous road upward to the summit. These days, the stages are vans with trained drivers to reach the summit safely and comfortably.    This is a steep and treacherous road and not everyone wants to make this climb by car. 
Once atop the summit however, you have to wait 30 minutes until the stage returns to take you back down to the bottom. 

 The Mt. Washington Auto Road started with wheat coming down from Canada. There was a need for a huge crop to be transported, but there was no ice free port available so a railroad line was built from Montreal to Portland, Maine  It passed through the small town of Gorham and opened up the east side White Mountains to the tourist trade. 

 Finally at the top.  

 Another way to reach the top, if you don't want to take the car, is the Mt Washington Cog Railway, which they had taken on one of their trips. Susan and I are posing in front of the exact same car we took a few years previous to this trip.  It was funny that our stage reached the the top the same time as this Cog Railway car.

According to the Cog Railway site, this is the first mountain climbing car of its kind.  

  The train car is pushed upward by a coal powered steam engine on a three mile long track making this the second steepest mountain climbing train in the world. . It is the only train track built entirely on a trestle. 

Well, here I am safely back down from the top of Mt. Washington and I'm wearing my button to prove it.  What a great trip we had.

As usual, here are the links:

The Mt Washington Auto Road site contains the history of the road and shows a video of the opening.  It's an interesting site and worth checking out

the Cog Railway site

Oh and one more picture.  I couldn't end this blog without  you seeing Mt. Washington, so below is a picture of me with a clear shot of the mountain in the background.  It's the snow capped mountain directly behind me.  The hotel that you see is the Mt. Washington Hotel.


Here is a link to a Wikipedia article on Mt. Washington.  Enjoy!

and another link to the Mount Washington Observatory where you can see pics of the observatory and pics of the mountain from various locations:


and my favorite site, the Mount Washington Hazecam which is set up in back of a school in Conway, NH.


  1. If I ever get a chance to visit the New England States, I'll have to check these out. Beautiful scenery.

  2. Wonderful story about your climb to the top of the Mt. Washington, Clyde! Awesome country...scenery is gorgeous!