Conditions were particularly bad this past weekend on New Hampshire's Presidential Range, and I'm sad to share that an experienced hiker lost her life in the conditions.
It seems that Kate Matrosova was dropped off by her husband very early Sunday morning to hike four of the peaks. While she had likely checked weather conditions the night before (she is a very experienced hiker), conditions changed rapidly, bringing some of the worst conditions the summit has seen in a long time.
Very sad to hear, and my condolences go out to her family. She activated her Personal Locator Beacon, but it took more than 20 hours for search and rescue cues to reach her because of the insane conditions. Kate seems to have passed away due to exposure.
Mount Washington, nearby, was the second coldest spot in the world that day at a crazy -35 degrees Fahrenheit. Washington also had sustained winds of 100 mph- as strong as a Category 2 hurricane and gusts as high as 141-mph – the highest recorded on the summit since March 2008.
Kate was not inexperienced, nor was she "reckless" for going out like I have seen. Sadly, Kate serves as a reminder that conditions can suddenly worsen, and we need to remember the way that nature is always changing. And to be prepared for any changes in conditions that we might not expect.
Be safe, everyone.