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Eyewitness Mt. Washington Weather, Part III

Jason Samenow @ 9:38 AM features writer Andrew Freedman is spending the summer working at the Mount Washington Observatory, the self-proclaimed home of the World's Worst Weather. This is the third in a series of biweekly reports (read the first report and second report).

Saturday afternoon: Thus far my third week on the summit has been dominated by fog, light rain and drizzle courtesy of a lumbering upper level low pressure system. This is the same weather feature that has brought relief from the heat and humidity to the D.C. area. The sun has tried to break through each day, but the clouds have won a decisive victory. There were a few moments at shift change on Wednesday when the summit-level clouds cleared and we had a nice "undercast" stretching beneath the mountain, but that was short-lived.

I am looking forward to Sunday when we should clear out, enabling a hike to the Alpine garden to view the blooming wildflowers, some of which are only found here in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Although I could be making that fact up. Tomorrow is also my birthday. I'm not used to having temperatures in the 40s on June 19, but I'll take it as long as it's sunny.

We had two damp events this week: the annual "Ride to the Sky" day when the Mount Washington Auto Road is closed to all but motorcycle traffic and the yearly Auto Road foot race. I have never seen motorcyclists so nervous to drive before, as the visibility was about 10 feet in pea soup fog, and they feared tumbling off the side of the mountain. The winner of the road cace completed the 7.6 mile journey in a little over an hour. I would've died at about the two-mile mark.

Aside from the tourists and athletes, we also had a summit visitor of a different sort wander into our living quarters this week. Initially mistaken for our cat, Nin, a fox decided to poke around the living room for food. Our startled volunteer chased it back outside, averting an awkward feline/fox encounter.

Let's hope the weather gets more interesting in the next few days. Anything other than continuous fog! I realize that the summit is in the clouds about 60 percent of the year, but still. This is monotonous.

Blue skies above a deck of clouds this morning on Mt. Washington. Webcam image courtesy Mt. Washington Observatory

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