Harvard Cabin – Your Help is Needed – October 13th and 14th, 2012

Greetings Harvard Cabin Mountaineers

We hope everyone had a great summer and is enjoying the Fall. Bonne Action de grâce’ to all of our friends in Quebec! September was fantastic with lots of warm, dry rock for all to enjoy. A relatively dry Summer and early Fall left the foliage looking tired. However, the last couple of weeks have been very wet and the foliage is rebounding nicely. The explosion of colors is peaking this week and it looks like we might see the sun soon! Of course, all of this rain has us thinking about the aquifers that will be helping to grow the early season ice!

Your Help is Needed – October 13th and 14th, 2012 – Please Read Solar Electric Upgrade Below

In case you didn’t hear me say it last season, this coming winter marks fifty years at Harvard Cabin! The construction of Harvard Cabin alone makes for an interesting story. Let us not forget the historical significance it hold here in the White Mountains and the role it played in the pursuit of modern technical ice climbing! Most importantly, we can’t forget the memories we’ve all made at the Harvard Cabin. It is a special place for sure -an experience you’d be hard-pressed to match anywhere in the World!

I had the privilege of spending a weekend at the cabin this summer with Former HMC President Ted Carman (Harvard Class of 1963) and some of his family members. Mr. Carman was the prime mover in the construction of the cabin following the demise of the Spur Cabin, which was located on the John Sherburne Ski Trail. Ted had the great vision, the proper sense of urgency, the tenacity, and the resourcefulness to get the job done! It’s no surprise that following his service in the United States Navy, Ted went on to become a pioneer in running non-profit community development companies. He focused on affordable housing and revitalization projects throughout New England. The construction of Harvard Cabin is still listed on his resume in a long list of projects he has lead. Click Here for a photo of Ted visiting the cabin this August!


In conjunction with our 50th Anniversary, we have been working on a number of cabin renovations. Marcia, myself, and a handful of other volunteers have enjoyed many a pack-board trips up the Tux Trail over the last couple of months with new materials. Click Here for some photos of recent changes at Harvard Cabin.

Caretaker’s Den

The Caretaker’s Den has been gutted and will soon be reconstructed with all new framing, plywood, rigid-foam insulation, and a new window. The renovations will help to keep warm-air in and rodents out! The Caretakers Den has been an unusable, unhealthy space for the last few seasons due to high-moisture levels that lead to mold. Renovations will hopefully resolve these issues by reducing moisture and keeping warm-air in and rodents out!

Solar Electric Upgrade

Click Here or the link below to Volunteer to Haul!

In other exciting news, the club is planning an upgrade to our Solar Electric System. The purpose of this project is largely to increase cabin safety by increasing emergency radio time and allowing the club to replace the gas lights we all know and love. Besides being expensive and not very user-friendly, the lights produce Carbon Monoxide (CO) and present a burn hazard. The plan is to retrofit the gas fixtures with ultra-soft LED Lighting. We are hoping to maintain a color temperature that will mimic the soft glow of the gas lights.

As part of this upgrade, we need to build a mast to mount our new panels. The mast will be set in concrete…about 2000 Pounds of concrete to be exact. We need to set the foundation within the next three weeks, but first the cement mix must be brought uphill. This is where you can help. By volunteering to haul a 40 pound bag of concrete up hill, you can help get this job done quickly. The Annual Harvard Cabin work weekend is October 13th-14th. This year we are asking for some help from outside the club. We are calling for help from all people who know and love the Harvard Cabin! Come be part of preparing the cabin for another 50 years!

If you are available to help next weekend, October 13th or 14th, please take a minute to fill out this form. That way we can know approximately how many bags of concrete to have on-hand. We will be meeting in the Pinkham Parking lot at 10 AM on Saturday and Sunday. Volunteers are asked to bring a backpack suitable for carrying a 40 pound (18 Kilogram) bag of cement mix. Lining your pack with a plastic trash bag wouldn’t be a bad idea. Don’t forget food and water!

Sorry, our permit will not allow use to accommodate overnight guests, but feel free to spend the day at the cabin!

If you can’t make our work weekend, but will be in the vicinity of the cabin anytime in the next couple of weeks. Feel free to hike up a bag of cement mix. 40 pound bags of Quikrete are available at your local hardware store for about $3.00! Thanks for your help!!!

Thanks everyone and please let us know if you are interesting in lending a helping hand at the cabin. We could really use help hanging new windows and someone who is good with DC lighting. Perhaps someone who is familiar with marine lighting and circuitry.

Thanks again. Get after it and stay safe! As always, Think Snow! Hope to see you next weekend! Bring your friends!

Rich Palatino
Harvard Cabin Caretaker

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