Monday, October 26, 2015

The Le Conte Honor Roll

Gracie McNicol with Paul Dinwidde.
 She set a record with her 244th climb on her 92nd birthday in 1983.
He raised the record to 750 with his final hike at age 78 in 1993.
(Photo by Edwin C. Jones)

     Tennessee's Mount Le Conte may be the most addictive peak in America—certainly in the Southeast. When the roll is called up yonder, there are dozens of hikers who can claim at least a hundred trips up Le Conte. A handful have over a thousand.
     As an old sportswriter, I thought they deserved a Top 10.
     Once I began researching them, it became more like a Top 40. So far, I've documented 28 men and eight women who have climbed Le Conte at least 100 times. (In fact, I know of two who have made over 100 trips after heart surgery.) I know there are more, and I hope this blog will encourage them to come forward and join the club.
     Le Conte means "the tale," and I intend to post tales about these climbers. I'll also include random records and legends involving the first, the fastest, the oldest, and the coldest. Come back often. No reservations required.
     Eventually, I'd like for this blog to become an online version of the wonderful logbooks at Le Conte Lodge—only much easier to access. Help me get started. While you're here, please leave a comment with the total number of trips you have made to the top of Mount Le Conte—even if it's only once.

If you are reading this on your phone ...

The honor roll is anchored prominently on the sidebar in the web version of the Le Conte Log but may not be visible in the mobile format. Here's a small-screen version just for you, Siri and Alexa:

Climbs Climber (last updated)
3,800~ Ron Valentine (2008 estimate)
3,000~ Jack Huff (1960 projection)
1,310~ Ed Wright (complete)
1,200~ Tim Line (2012 est.)
1,000~ Graham Dinwiddie Cooper (est.)
0,982~ Dave Scanlon (complete)
0,900+ Alan Householder (2011 est.)
0,750+ Paul Dinwiddie (complete)
0,718+ Margaret Stevenson (complete)
0,500+ Paul Adams (1963 est.)
0,358+ Tom Morgan (2000)
0,345+ Tillroe Smith (2006)
0,288+ Dr. Ed Jones (2015)
0,280+ Jean Lambert (1998)
0,276+ Bill Sharp (1995)
0,263+ Jonathan Fuller (2003)
0,244+ Gracie McNicol (complete)
0,239+ Dr. Jesse "Kip" Miller (2014)
0,239+ Jean Ann Miller (2014)
0,230+ Dewey Slusher (2017-03-11)
0,217+ Betty Jane Barnett (complete)
0,200+ O.K. Sergeant (1998 est.)
0,180+ Henry Neel (1994)
0,174+ Rev. Rufus Morgan (complete)
0,173+ Shirley Henry (1998)
0,160+ Larry Russell (2014)
0,157+ Ron Collins (1998)
0,142+ Nancy Cain (2014)
0,127+ Ruth Ewald (1998)
0,107+ Clifford "Bo" Henry (1998)
0,100+ Dr. John Adler (2016 est.)

0,100+ Will Ramsay (est.)
0,100+ Dave Landreth (2004 est.)
0,100+ John Northrup (2011 est.)
0,100+ Ben Fitzgerald (2012)
0,100+ Jerry Luth (2013)
Have you climbed Le Conte 100 times? Let me know so I can add your name or update your totals. Leave a comment below or email TommyL810(at)hotmail(dot)com.

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