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  1. #1

    Default Missing hiker in Whites found in Dry River Wilderness

    https://www.unionleader.com/news/saf...c93c7432e.html

    He'd been missing for around a month. They located him yesterday after hikers reported seeing some of his gear over the weekend.

    They didn't mention a cause of death at this point but loosely speculated that it may have been some combination of wind and weather that forced him off the ridge and down into the Wilderness Area.

    His car was found at the Crawford Path TH and he was believed to have been hiking up to Eisenhower and Monroe.

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    10-27-2003
    Location
    northern whites
    Posts
    4,923

    Default

    More like 2 weeks.

    The Dry River area is a designated wilderness. No blazes, minimal maintenance and minimal signage. There is a somewhat infamous spot on the AT southbound near the Mitzpah AMC hut that hikers inadvertently take thinking they are on the AT that is actually a path down into the wilderness area. That area got trashed during an extreme weather event 20 years ago and was closed to the public for about 2 years. The White Mountain National Forest got funding to rebuild the trails network but they decided to spend the money elsewhere on some real bogus projects. They did eventually put in flagging at the worst spots to guide hikers around them but it is a tough place in spots to get around as entire hillsides washed out down into the river. In some cases, the flagged routes have subsequently washed out. The trail from Mizpah also needs to cross the Dry River. Contrary to its name, in the spring the Dry River is raging River until snow melt is over (and snow is still melting in this area) later in the season it drops down to a very low flow with lots of swimming holes and is nice place to hang out in hot weather (if folks are willing to detour active landslide areas).

    The other aspect is the AT (Crawford Path) is very exposed and mostly above treeline a couple of miles north of Mizpah. When bad weather comes in it normally comes in from the west and in very bad conditions the temptations is to bail out via a couple of trails into the Dry River area. which eventually pops out on RT 302 a couple of miles below the AT crossing. On a map or an ap it looks like a good bailout route but it's a terrain trap. Locals and guides know that when hiking along the Presidential ridge From Franconia Notch to Pinkham Notch (quite a long stretch) that if in trouble bail to the right of the trail as any bail option to the left means a long walk out of the woods through Wilderness areas where trails are not blazed and very confusing. For northbounders, reverse the rule, if in trouble bail left. in either case that is walking into the incoming nasty weather but very quickly the trail drops down into the trees. Note in some areas of the ridge particularly the northern Presidentials, north of Mt Washington, treeline may still be 1 mile of full exposure to the incoming wind and weather.

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