Friday, August 6, 2010

Remembering Marcy

Today (Friday, August 6) marks the anniversary of the first ascent of New York’s highest mountain, Mt. Marcy. The first documented ascent took place in 1837.

My first (and so far only) ascent of Mt. Marcy was July 22, 1978. My wife and I, college students at the time, were leading a group of high school students on a weeklong backpacking trip through the High Peaks of the Adirondacks. For a warm up, we had already, earlier in the trip, climbed Upper and Lower Wolf Jaw. When we left our campsite the morning of the climb, the weather was comfortably warm. I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt. Once on the summit of Marcy we were in a cool fog and I was wearing a nylon wind parka to keep warm. After climbing down the other side we were once enjoying warm and sunny weather.

I moved to New York State three years ago, and in the past three years I have been surprised that many native New Yorkers do not know where Mt. Marcy is located, and do not know that Mt. Marcy is the highest mountain in the Empire State.

For the record, Mt. Marcy rises 5344 feet above sea level and is located in the High Peaks Region of New York’s Adirondack Mountains.


Paul F. Rack said...

I climbed Mt Marcy once, in about 1976. But it was so shrouded in clouds we couldn't see anything.... It would be good to do it again someday.

John Edward Harris said...

Paul, what time of year did you climb, and what wee the condition below? Shall we plan a clergy climb?

bonnie said...

Isn't that the one where the Hudson River starts (Lake Tear of the Clouds)?

John Edward Harris said...

Congratulations, bonnie. You probably know more about NY geography than most native New Yorkers and deserve a gold star. Lake Tear of the Clouds, just below Mt. Marcy, is the highest pond source of the Hudson River, at an elevation of 4346 FT. I do not know about its condition today, but in the late 70's it was suffering from acid rain runoff.