Harvard Cabin Update – Celebrating 50 Years!

To The Many Friends of Harvard Cabin,

Seasons Greetings!

The cabin is open for another season.

The cabin has been a busy place this Fall. Beginning in August with a small gathering brought together by Ted Carman, HMC President 1962-1963 and prime mover in the construction of Harvard Cabin, the club began to address a few routine maintenance related issues with the cabin in hopes of keeping it operational for another 50 years! In addition to regular maintenance, the club is also going through several stages of planning, permitting, and fund-raising for some larger maintenance needs along with some major improvements and safety upgrades. Of course, all changes will be subtle as to not disturb the look, feel, and operation of the Harvard Cabin we all know and love.


Having taken much longer then expected this Fall, the renovation of the Caretaker’s Den has kept caretakers from the past and present along with many club members and other volunteers busy for much of the Fall. Situated above the cabin entrance, many of you know the den was a cold, damp and dormant area that had been deteriorating over the last several years. Work began in Mid-August with the demolition of the existing framing, flooring, and insulation (think 30 years of mouse infestation!). Of course, all unusable debris had to find its way downhill and new materials uphill. I lost count of how many trips up the Tux Trail I personally made this Fall, never mind the countless trip made by other volunteers. Whatever the number, Future caretaker’s are in for a real treat thanks to the effort of so many!

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-qGvYLrl3TPg/UG8LTclUXTI/AAAAAAAAblY/apB9uXr5E7k/s288/Renovation18.jpg    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-SCoDKgpmZCg/ULgdHfmfLHI/AAAAAAAAbw8/ITLqcTvzvKU/s288/PB120194.jpg https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-w6ZX3z7H7zY/ULgdFr7fr-I/AAAAAAAAbw8/_3dVn9KLRxE/s288/PB110178.jpg

After the demo-work was done, the supporting infrastructure was cleaned, disinfected, sanded, and sealed.. The existing fiberglass insulation was replaced with rigid foam insulation which helped with the elimination of rodent friendly gaps and cracks. We even added a new double-pane window to the loft! There is still a little work to be done before the project is complete, but it would suffice to say that we’re hopeful that we’ll be able to keep the warm air in and the rodents out! Click Herefor some more photos of work being done at the cabin over the last few months!

Once again, It is a great privilege to to be serving as Harvard Cabin Caretaker again this season! Thanks to HMC for having me back for yet another season! I’m looking forward to seeing many of you back at the cabin again this year. We’re setting-up better then we did last year, weather-wise. I am happy to see the persistent signs of the coming winter on the rock pile. Folks have really been getting after the early season ice over the last few weeks. Personally, I’ve been so busy with renovations, I haven’t made it past the cabin yet this season! Surely, that will change in the coming days.

Staying at the cabin…

Finally, I’d like to remind everyone that the Harvard Cabin is a public-use cabin operated by the Harvard Mountaineering Club on a first-come, first-serve basis. Everyone wishing to stay at the cabin must register at Pinkham Notch before heading uphill. The Harvard Cabin Register can be found at the Trail Information Desk at the Visitor Center during business hours and downstairs in the pack-up room after hours. The cabin sleeps 16 people per night. There is also room for 16 additional campers outside at the Harvard Tent Sites. Rates are $15.00 per person, per night inside, $10 per person, per night outside. US Currency Only. Be sure to read ALL instructions when signing-in so that you arrive prepared and able to fully enjoy your time at the cabin!

If you have any questions you can e-mail [email protected] or speak to a Trail Information Specialist at Pinkham Notch Visitor Center.

Let’s hope for a safe and snowy season! I look forward to seeing you soon!


Rich Palatino
Harvard Cabin Caretaker
[email protected]

NOTE – Harvard Cabin is not affiliated with the Appalachian Mountain Club. Harvard Cabin is maintained by Harvard Mountaineering Club for use by the general public. The cabin is operated under a special-use permit granted by the USDA Forest Service. Cabin space and tent-sites are available on a first-come, first-serve basis between December 1st and April 1st each year. Specific instructions for staying at the cabin can be found online at http://www.HarvardMountaineering.org.

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