Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Hiking Glassface Mountain and the Memories it Fosters

Androscoggin River with Sunday River ski area in the upper left

Six minutes from my home is the little village of Rumford Center. It's the quintessential small New England town with a white-spired church smack dab in the center, a large cemetery, and white clapboard community house.  Parking for the Glassface Mountain trail is a gravel lot named Hastings Landing that's right on the Androscoggin River. Hastings Landing also serves as parking for a boat launch.

The Landing is named after a friend and former assistant ski coach, Ann Hastings Morton. Her family has played an active role in my coaching life. Her  husband, Dave, coached skiing with me and their son, Paul, skied three events as a skimeister on our team in the 1980s. He also played an energetic brand of soccer on my Rumford High School team--he had a great engine. Ann and Dave's daughter, Pam, was on my first-ever soccer team, The Rumford Stinkers. And then there was Tom who skied alpine on my team in the early 1980s.

Newspaper article about my book, The Mosquito Test,
with my students Erica, Neil, and Stephanie. 
Tom, a carpenter in Colorado, battled cancer in the early 1990s when I taught, coached, and ran the writing center at the newly-formed Mountain Valley High School. During those early years, I also taught Erica, Neil, and Stephanie, three delightful kids who lived with cystic fibrosis.

Tom's cancer and Erica, Neil, and Stephanie's lives with CF sparked the idea for my book, The Mosquito Test (1994).  At the time, I thought about a teenager with CF, considered a chronic terminal disease in the early 1990s, befriending another teenager who had recently acquired cancer. In this case the friendship formed when the two kids became tennis partners.

Living in your own hometown conjures lots of memories... parking in Hastings Landing did just that.


Climbing Glassface takes 25-30 minutes. The trail had a few mudded-out areas but those sections didn't diminish the view.

Androscoggin River

Bailey looking a bit miffed... or like his false teeth fell out. 

Pretty boy

Sunday River

Wicked handsome boy ;-) 

Happy on the summit 


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