Proposed Expanded Storage Facility & Utility Shed
The USFS Snow Ranger program maintains several buildings at the base of Mount Washington in Pinkham Notch. These structures house equipment and materials critical to the daily operations of the Mount Washington Avalanche Center. The US Forest Service is the lead agency in charge of Search and Rescue in the Cutler River Drainage from December 1 to May 31 each year. The Snow Rangers are frequently on duty in the Ravines, and are on call during this entire time frame for emergency operations. Thus, it is imperative that these facilities and equipment remain in tip top shape to support this mission. The Friends of Tuckerman Ravine raises funds and supplies volunteer resources to assist the Forest Service in this mission. We also use these facilities as a place to store tools for our trail crews and to coordinate and arrange group activities on the mountain, including our own mountain safety team during the annual Inferno race event.
This year we seek to build a new storage shed to replace an antiquated, small structure that has outlived it's original purpose. Won't you please help us make this new building a reality with a generous contribution? Your financial support could ultimately save a life on Mount Washington, so please help us get this project underway with a donation today!
Use and need
The USFS Snow Ranger program is looking to build a shed at the existing Pinkham Notch Garage location in order to expand storage space. Currently, an 8'x10' shed, used primarily for fuel storage, exists at the proposed site of the new structure. The existing shed would be moved and repurposed to make room for a new utility shed. In order to best meet current and future needs, a new 18' x 20' structure is proposed in order to accommodate 1- 2 snow machines and/or a six wheeled ATV. Shoulder months with little snow appear to be more regular occurrences and the snow machines allow more rapid access to the USFS Snow Rangers' operational area for day-to-day forecasting operations as well as for rescue and emergency response situations when the larger Pisten Bully vehicle should not or can not be driven. As shown in the plan view, the overall dimensions of the building accommodate 2 snow machines with space allotted for safe passage around the vehicles as well as some storage space along the walls for tools and equipment. Note that a new snowmobile is drawn to scale in the plan. The other snow mobiles are a bit shorter, the 6 wheeler is a bit wider and shorter.
Site and design considerations
Construction style will be post and pier to accommodate the slope pitch of approximately 1-2:12. The site chosen will require removal of 10 trees (<4” in diameter each including mountain ash, beech, fir) and some brush. An earthen or gravel ramp may be requiredon one end to level and smooth entrance in order to reduce problems entering and exiting building. A second entrance to serve as an exit in winter months is also desirable but, may be eliminated based if budget constraints exist. Little ground disturbance will be necessary or desired given the rocky soil. Erosion during construction should not be much of an issue. Nearby, downslope terrain is flat and would easily capture minor sediments produced by digging and backfilling holes for piers. Exterior finish details will be typical brown stained or painted wood siding and trim details with brown, five rib steel roofing to reduce snow load. 8-10 pitch gable construction with ridge running the 20’ dimension will reduce snow pile ups at entrance(s). Windows may be added for natural lighting as budget allows. Roof planes will face NW and SE with little opportunity for glare visible from nearby viewpoints due to orientation and remaining canopy.
In the overview of site looking towards the garage, the preferred location of the new structure is the rear corner of the existing garage building. The snowmobile/ATV approach would be from the left behind the existing garage, and the alternative exit to the right are already cleared of shrubs and larger trees to maintain plow lanes around the existing garage.