Randolph Mountain Club
P.O. Box 279, Gorham, NH 03581
 

Board of Directors 2000-2001

Mike Pelchat, President              Lynn Farnham                        Steve Maddock
Laura Brockett              David Forsyth                        Gail Scott
Mary Brown              Chris Lake                        Jeff Smith
Michele Cormier              Jon Martinson                        Lisa Teczar
John Eusden              Doug Mayer                        Ginny Umiker

June, 2001

Dear RMC members and friends,

As the great snow pack of the winter of 2001 slowly melts off the mountains, spring has started its climb up from the valley floor to the snow-zone at timberline. We have enjoyed a sensational winter with settled snow reaching a record depth of 126-inches at Gray Knob's snow stake! Fortunately the valleys were spared any damaging spring floods. No one could have scripted a better melting scenario than the gradual way nature took back the snow this spring.

The RMC camps and trails survived the epic winter well. Winter damage to trails seems to be normal (so far) on the main routes. However the roof of the Nepali Bridge at Mossy Glen collapsed under the heavy snow load. The Randolph Foundation has repair plans in place. The RMC is supporting as much as we can.

Besides the routine business of running the Club's affairs, the Board of Directors has seen to the construction of tent platforms at the old Jones Cottage where, thanks to the generosity of Dan and Edith Tucker, who own the property, the summer trail crew will be housed.

Thanks to all whose continued financial and physical support make it possible for the RMC to continue trail maintenance and mountain hospitality to the high standards of our RMC predecessors.

In the following reports, we bring you up-to-date on the RMC's plans for summer 2001.

RMC Spring Trails - Doug Mayer

With several feet of snow still blanketing the upper reaches of RMC's paths, it¹s hard to imagine that another trail crew season is underway. But sure as the strengthening sun is melting away the huge snows of the past winter, RMC's trail crew is heading out on the trails to begin the season¹s work: repairing winter damage, brushing, blazing, cutting blowdowns, cairn building and preventing trail erosion with rock steps, waterbars and ditching.

Our main news of the spring happened in the valley. RMC volunteers, working with Bowman Builders, constructed eight tent platforms for the trail crew. The crew, as Mike noted in his introduction, will use the Jones Cottage near Coldbrook Farm as their base of operations, thanks to Dan and Edith Tucker. Several evenings and weekends of volunteer work brought this project to a successful conclusion in time for the crew¹s arrival on June 1. Recent grants and donations from the Reavis Foundation, American Hiking Society, American Alpine Club, Moriah Sports, EMS and International Mountain Climbing School helped the club significantly in this endeavor, but we still need more than $3,000. Every donated dollar will help the club defray this cost and help solve the long-time problem of seasonal trail crew housing. We hope you can help.

We are fortunate this year to have the expertise of Sherri Fabre as Field Supervisor. Sherri has worked for four years with RMC - first as Gray Knob caretaker, then on the trail crew for three seasons. She has recently returned from a season at the US base at McMurdo Sound on Antarctica.

Our Senior Crew for 2001 includes Jennifer Cleary, Dan Griffiths and returning third year trail crew members Aaron Parcak and Pete Sullivan. Our first year, SCA trail crew includes Dan Schwartz, Thomas Remmers and Jill Grenon.

The major project for the Senior Crew this year is erosion control work along a one-mile section of Lowe's Path. The SCA crew will be performing basic trail maintenance on the Hill trails and erosion control work on sections of Sylvan Way, Beechwood Way, Fallsway and Brookbank.

As part of the new Randolph Community Forest, RMC is now planning for two new trails, which will form a loop from Randolph to the Pond of Safety and back. We'll need names for the trails. The Board of Directors is soliciting suggestions for trail names, with nominations to be announced this fall or winter. If you have a great idea for a trail name, email your idea to us, along with the rationale for your suggestion, via the RMC web site. We'll share the best ideas with RMC members, later in the year.

Camps - Jeff Smith

The RMC has two new caretakers for this summer. Stephanie Koetzle (from Sioux Falls, SD) will be at Gray Knob. Roz Stever (from Randolph) will be at Crag Camp. Roz is a second-generation RMC caretaker. Her father, Guy Stever Jr., was a caretaker during the summers of 1966 and 1967.

Web Site - Jeff Smith

The trail sign auction ended on May 1 with more than $650 in bids. The highest bid was $150 for a sign from The Cornice trail. We now have a new auction on the site in which ten Randolph Valley/Northern Peaks maps are up for bid. The maps are unfolded and numbered. Only 50 of the maps were finished unfolded so they are definitely a collector's item.

A new RMC News section has been added to the web site, along with a public message board. Be sure to add it to your bookmarks.

Events - Mary Brown

Fourth of July Tea, Wednesday, July 4, 3-5 p.m., Sky Meadow on Randolph Hill Road
Gourmet Hike, Thursday, August 2
Annual Meeting, Saturday, August 11, 7:30 p.m., Randolph Town Hall
Picnic and Charades, Saturday, August 18, noon in Mossy Glen.

As the summer unfolds I hope everyone will have a chance to take part in a volunteer project, organized hike, club meeting/social event or a camps visit. When your soles hit the trails that lead you to a breathtaking waterfall or up to the sublime grandeur of the alpine zone, take a moment to thank the power that created this landscape. And, if you benefit from the health- and spirit-building powers of the mountains, think of the RMC - not only at dues time but also consider a stint as a member of the Board of Directors. Each year there are vacancies on the board to fill and the club needs fresh ideas and different opinions. Even contrary opinions are welcome to help generate thoughtful discussions. If you'd like to serve, contact any board member.

Have a great season. I look forward to experiencing the mountains with you this summer.

Sincerely,

Mike Pelchat
RMC President