National Geographic : 1937 Jul
FROM NOTCH TO NOTCH IN THE WHITE MOUNTAINS Photograph by C. T . Bodwell THE UNINITIATED HIKER'S SILENT GUARDIAN This warning should not be taken lightly, for although thousands ramble about the summits of the mountains each year in clear weather, storms often force others-who may have started out on the trails on sunny afternoons-to spend hours and sometimes days in shelters (page 77). The only valley hut is at Pinkham Notch, where the double-deck bunks are often re served weeks ahead during the ski season in Tuckerman Ravine.* A trail to the east of this hut leads to Glen Ellis Falls, probably the best known of the White Mountain falls. Another leads up Wildcat Mountain flanking the east ern side of the Notch; from it may be seen breath-taking views of Mount Washington and the Presidential Range, eight of whose peaks are more than a mile above sea level. The trails from the base of the mountains lead through forests of maple, birch, beech, oak, ash, and spruce. As you climb higher the spruces continue into and beyond the region of the balsams and hemlocks. These trees that blanket the mountain slopes in a variety of greens during the summer weave a magic carpet of rare colors in the autumn. The maples lend various tints of reds and yellows, the oaks reds and browns, the birches yellows, the ashes yel lows and browns, the beeches yellowish russets, and the balsams, spruces, and hem * See "New England Ski Trails," by Daniel Rochford, in THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGA ZINE for November, 1936. locks contribute shades from bright green to near black. Some years the first snow falls when the autumn spectacle is at its height, presenting a study in color that only Mother Nature can so strikingly produce. WILD FLOWERS IN PROFUSION Scores of wild flowers-daisies, white flowered brook saxifrage, yellow fire-finger, rose cassiope, flaming Devil's paintbrush, purple Lapland rhododendron, yellow ar nica, trilliums, vetches, asters, and deep blue gentians-burst forth in profusion along the highways and trails. Above tree line on Mount Washington is the Alpine Garden, a "floral island" where grow many plants found nowhere else in North America south of Labrador. While the flowers spread their blanket of color at your feet, some of more than a hundred species of birds break the silence of the forest with a joyous medley. In the Franconia region an amateur ornithologist has identified 87 summer birds, including 16 species of warblers, 4 of woodpeckers, 3 of thrushes, and 2 of wrens. He also has observed 16 kinds of birds which make the region their winter home.