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Old 09-08-2017, 09:36 AM   #1
MtnManJohn
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Question High Peaks Canister/Container photos + history

For another research project I am on re: canisters and containers (eg jars, tin boxes, etc) on the High Peaks, I have been gathering photos of canisters on the peaks, which I will eventually put into a photo album and post. Pete Hickey et al have been very helpful in this endeavor.

Canister photos in need of, still missing: Iroquois, Phelps, Rocky Peak Ridge
(these had canisters, according to the NYS Museum)

Also, any photos of containers other than canisters on the high peaks prior to the canisters being put in would be great!

Finally, any historical information on when the canisters on each of the peaks were put up, removed, stolen, and other interesting info would be much appreciated.
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Old 09-12-2017, 09:07 PM   #2
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Hi John,

I waited a while, because I figured others with longer history would respond...

So the one I am not sure about is Iroquois. When I climbed it the first time in 1984, there was no canister. I was told at the time that there never had been a canister on Iroquois, because it was always considered "line of sight easy" from Algonquin, and it was thought that a canister was not necessary.

Now Phelps I know was once trail-less, because the Phelps spur trail had not yet been constructed. So it makes sense that there was once a canister there.

I don't know the history of the Rocky Peak Ridge trail.

Good luck with the project!

Tom
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Old 09-14-2017, 10:37 AM   #3
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Hey there John!

For Iroquois, I believe you will have to reach out to hikers who climbed it no later than the mid-1970s. Here's what Heaven Up-Hi'sted-ness! has to say on page 352:

Quote:
... first official logbook welcomed hikers from August 12, 1967 through July 9, 1969. By the late 1970s, the logbooks of Iroquois disappeared, much sooner than those on other trailless peaks.
I tried to corroborate this statement using evidence from my own ascent of Iroquois on September 9, 1979. In the second letter I sent to Grace Hudowalski I listed all the peaks I had climbed and only the entry for Tabletop included the names of previous hikers (that I had recorded from its logbook). This lends credence to the claim that Iroquois's logbook was gone by the late 70s.

I climbed Phelps on May 14, 1979 and RPR on July 18, 1981 and, once again, my correspondence reports no previous hikers for these summits (but it does for Cliff, Macomb, South Dix, East Dix, and Hough).

All this to say, photos of canisters on these summits will be old and I wish you luck finding them. I have slides from 'back in the day' but not a single one of a canister.

I don't know if I was representative of the average hiker back then, but I'll share my experiences to highlight the challenge faced by John, and anyone else, who attempts to locate old photos.

I used to carry a Canon FTb ("umpteen pounds of brass and glass"). Given that it would be loaded with a roll of just 24 or 36 exposures, plus the cost of processing the film, I didn't normally shoot "everyday objects" like trail-signs, summit canisters, registers, and the like. Odds of including these objects in a shot were improved if I was taking a photo of someone next to one. However, I often hiked alone (and in rainier weather than I do now) so, there was less opportunity to take self-portraits on summits. "Selfie" was an unknown concept to me ... without the use of a self-timer and a mini-tripod (or some jury-rigged equivalent).

Good luck!
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Old 09-14-2017, 12:07 PM   #4
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Just my personal opinion: I wish the Adirondack HH had canisters again. I like 'em. I like reading the entries, seeing the history etc. Canisters are a temporary fixture so in my opinion not a significant affront to the wilderness setting. I really liked climbing Calamity mountain the other day and seeing that there was a sign up there. In my opinion small signs and canisters are cool. I respect those who have a different personal opinion on the matter however.
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Old 09-17-2017, 09:08 AM   #5
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Spencer, I agree. I've really enjoyed reading through the entries found in the canisters of the New England 3k'ers. As you begin to recognize the different names, and see them again and again, you begin to feel a bit of community with them. Sometimes it feels like your concurrently chipping away at the lists, even though the other entries may be a decade or more older.

Also, canisters and signs cut down trampling of the summit areas.
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