Friday, July 20, 2012

Mount Wachusett

Easter Morning 1973 at the summit of Mount Wachusett

Wachusett Mountain in the Fall of 1975

The Wachusett Mountaineer

I grew up in Holden, Massachusetts, near Mount Wachusett.  The high school I went to was called Wachusett Regional High School, and it included the towns of Holden, Paxton, Princeton, Rutland and Sterling, Massachusetts.  Our school mascot was the Mountaineer, which is still the mascot.  In the past he was interchangeably carrying a jug of hooch or a gun, neither one was very politically correct for a high school mascot.

We could see Mount Wachusett from our back porch in Holden, until the trees grew up too big and someone built a new house behind ours.  We took our ski lessons there when it was a tiny ski hill with only a snack shack and outhouses.  Wachusett was a great place to hike as Brownies, or to pick blueberries.  It was always fun to see the seasons change on the summit.

My Dad used to like to drive up to the summit on Easter morning.  No particular reason, just a little excursion that turned into a family tradition.  It was one of the first places he would bring out of town guests. From the summit you could see three states, and the towers of Boston glinting in the sunlight.  On a very, very clear day you could see Mount Washington in the distance, in northern New Hampshire.

Now I live in New Hampshire, and when I leave Londonderry for Nashua I have to drive up a big hill.  In the winter, from the top of this hill I can see Mount Wachusett in the distance, with the ski runs all lit up.  Even though New Hampshire is famous for its White Mountains and Mount Washington, I still love the sight of little Mount Wachusett.  It is the highest point in Massachusetts east of the Connecticut River, and it's summit is only 2,006 feet (611 meters).  Henry David Thoreau wrote about a walk to the summit in his A Walk to Wachusett.

Is there a mountain in your childhood memories?

Thoreau's Walk to Wachusett at this link:

Copyright 2012, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

1 comment:

  1. Pikes Peak, CO... from which I needed to be rush down since six-week-old infants don't breathe very well at the tops of 14000-ft mountains.