Mount Washington would be my first real exposure to winter mountaineering. You can read all about the endeavors, but to truly experience it and get good at it you must go there.
I first heard about the “suicidal mountain” from a girl friend who was raised in New Hampshire when I came up to visit her family. Of course I was drawn to it and organized a trek with two of the Chase boys and my brother Tristan. We were set to go in the winter of 2006.
The first attempt would not go so well. One member of the party fell and bruised the bone in his knee (I didn’t know that was possible). The trip was pretty much scrapped after a long, extremely windy and cold night on the ridge in a four season Eureka tent crammed in like sardines.
I was determined to climb the mountain and came back solo as no one else wanted to try again. I would utilize old school military mountaineering equipment from Europe that was heavy and somewhat obsolete. I am very grateful for the modern equipment I know utilize!
I spent 4 days alone and not seeing a single sole or talking to anyone on the mountain. I carried all my own provisions and had a grand time. It was trying and I learned a good deal about the wicked weather. In the end I touched the summit in spectacular weather on February 4, 2006.