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Highpointers e-Bulletin of April 18, 2010

Well, it certainly looks as though “Spring has Sprung” already, at least here in the Southeastern portion of the country.  Now is the time for Highpointing to go full swing!  But before y’all head out, I need to mention a few things.

The Newsletter has had a delivery glitch and many of you may not have received it yet?  It was mailed on February 24th in Denver, Colorado and I got mine here in East Tennessee on the 13th of March.  Editor John Mitchler just received his last week in Golden, Colorado and also another member last week in Chesapeake, Virginia.  If you don’t have yours just wait a little bit longer.  “Hound Dog” Mitchler is hot on the trail and hopefully he can rectify this problem.

I presently have your Highpoint Count at  .  If it’s different let me know. I keep track of the “Family Memberships” in a different field in the database.  It will, however, show up in the annual directory. If your name is John and you go by Jack or your name is Teresa and you go by Teri then that’s what we want in the database.  Please let us know.

If you don’t report updates at:,, the Highpointers Hotline (865.660.0027) or when you renew, I won’t get it unless you report it to the Newsletter Guys in Colorado with a trip report and they pass it on, eventually.

Notice the changes below.  I’m trying to give y’all some information to help you to gear up for your 2010 Highpointing trips.  Take your time and enjoy your self, be safe and keep me updated on your accomplishments.

Have a good day!

Craig Noland
The Membership Guy

Nominations Still Needed for Board Election…

Nominations have been extended until April 23rd – Midnight due to delivery problems with this past issue of the newsletter.

Think you’ve got the stuff to make this Club work better?  Want to pitch in and help our Club move on into to the future?  Got ideas and are willing to use them to promote this Club?  Here’s your chance! Any member in good standing may nominate another member or your own self!

  • Nominees must meet the following qualifications:
  • Have access to e-mail
  • Consent to the nomination prior to submission
  • Be a member in good standing (Dues Current)
  • Attend at least 2 of 3 conventions during their term
  • Be willing to roll their sleeves up and help the club.

Nominations should include the nominees name, home address, phone number, e-mail address and a brief statement as to the qualifications of the candidate.  Nominees are allowed a 75 word statement and will be included along with a ballot in the next issue of the newsletter (#88) to be published in April 2010.

  • Mail Nominations to the Election Chair at: Mark Comstock, 1707 Charlton Street, Ann Arbor MI 48103-4171
  • Email Nominations to the Election Chair at:  For general information phone 303.278.1915

Nominations will be accepted through April 23rd – Midnight (Eastern Time), 2010

Kenton Mercantile in Oklahoma Now has a Website…

The Kenton Mercantile or “The Merc” has a new website up and running featuring information about the Merc, the Kenton Kabins and the Kenton, Oklahoma area all together.  This is a nice addition to one of the more popular highpoints at Black Mesa, Oklahoma.

This website also has links to popular area websites to make that trip into the only town in the state that is in the Mountain Time.  Here you will find out just what’s happening before you get there.  Check it out today!

The Highpointers Foundation “Silent Auction” Ends July 15th…

The Highpointers Foundation featured item this quarter is an original, signed, “Ed Viesturs – K2 – Life and Death on the World’s Most Dangerous Mountain” from 2009.  Author Ed Viesturs signed it to “The Highpointers Club” a very cool personalization! Un-signed copies of this book are offered for sale on Mike Chessler’s website from about thirty dollars.

Viesturs’ newest book is on the best-seller lists, and gives an overview of what a difficult mountain K2 has become since first being climbed 50 years ago. Viesturs was gracious to sign and personalize it during a trip to Colorado for the inaugural “Hall of Excellence” ceremony at the Bradford Washburn American Mountaineering Museum in Golden CO. The museum established a hall of fame and inducted 4 American climbers, with Ed providing the keynote address and slide show. The BWAMM houses a state highpoints exhibit, and state Highpointers Club members receive a discount for admission.

Many thanks to those numerous individuals who participated in the first silent auction, a signed Frank Ashley state highpoint guidebook ($500 was raised), the second silent auction, a signed Sir Edmund Hillary autobiography ($650 was raised), and the third silent auction, a signed Maurice Herzog – Annapurna narrative ($350 was raised).  Get more information from The Highpointers Foundation at: and click on the “Fundraising” button at the top of the page.

Their Fund Raising Page is at: and then click to the “Silent Auction Page” prominently displayed as a link.

Fill out the Bid form, and submit a bid. Bids must be at least $10 higher than the current high bid. All bid activity will be updated daily, but is not instantaneous. The amount of the donation above and beyond the value of the book from the winning bidder is tax deductible so please consult your tax professional.

(About the Foundation: As a 501-C-3 non-profit organization, The Highpointers Foundation is dedicated to education, support and conservation of the highest point in each of the 50 US States, provides a forum for education about the highpoints, aids in the conservation of the highpoints and their environs, maintains positive relationships with owners of highpoints on private property, assists in the care and maintenance of highpoints and supports public and private efforts to maintain the integrity of and access to state highpoints.

The Foundation is is currently working with the Foothills Trail Conference regarding an ambitious signage project to better mark the trails that go over and around the South Carolina highpoint at Sassafras Mountain by providing financial assistance. Discussions are on-going regarding making repairs to vandalized improvements at the Indiana Highpoint.

Recent discussions with the White Butte – North Dakota Highpoint owners were very fruitful and there may be some work we can accomplish there in the near future. As a reminder, when you donate you can request that your funds be set aside to benefit a certain state highpoint if you choose.

The Highpointers Foundation needs your support, please give something back to the hobby you love! Our grandkids will appreciate what we leave for them as our legacy.)

Events and Other Stuff…

Cheaha Mountain  – Alabama…

Cheaha State Park is offering “Picnic in the Park” with self tours between 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Saturday April 24th.  The gate attendant will provide directions to each site available, trail maps and also hand out coupons for the picnic special at the Cheaha Mountain Restaurant.  At the Observation Tower a historical information flyer will be available to all guests. Guests can register at the gate for a free night of camping (Sun-Thurs). Two winners will be drawn.

Johnson Shut-Ins  – Missouri…

Missouri’s Governor Nixon announced the grand re-opening of Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park on May 22nd and the new campground to open April 30th. The redeveloped park provides many of the key features visitors enjoyed in the past and several new features for today’s visitors. The shut-ins area of the park is once again open for swimming and splashing. A new boardwalk provides easy access  for viewing or swimming.

The Black River Center, being built in the Day Use Area of the park, will be completed in spring 2010. The center will feature interpretive exhibits, meeting rooms and a small retail area.

National Parks Now subject to Firearms Laws…

On February 22, 2010, a new federal law went into effect that now allows people who legally posses firearms under federal and state law to also possess those firearms in the national parks in that state. More details are available in the National Park Service news release on their website.

Highpoint Liaisons and Helpers Needed…

“Need a moment… no foreseeable summits on your horizon?  Looking to fill a void between your Highpointing trips? Need a break from work? Tired of watching reruns of Survivorman and Man vs. Wild? Wanna communicate with other Highpointers? Volunteer to be a Klub Liaison or Helper or even a Regional Coordinator. We need a few folks with a few minutes to help keep our club in the know.

Helpers are contacts for other HPers to find out about local conditions. Liaisons are contacts for owners and managers of the highpoints so we can keep open communication, address issues and find ways to improve trails etc. Regional Coordinators work with Liaisons, Helpers, Owners and Managers and maintain contact information as well as promote goodwill and pursue potential projects. Check the latest Directory for states available.

We really need a Regional for the Northeast. I would even consider an energetic volunteer to take over the reigns of the South.   Kontact me folks before all the slots are filled!” – Stony Burk

Regional Coordinators: Needed are a Northeast Regional Coordinator effective now and a Southern Region Coordinator ASAP. Highpointer Alan Bean has taken over as Western Regional Coordinator and is currently updating the Clubs Liaisons and Helpers out there

Highpoint Liaisons: are the Clubs points of contact with the owner of a specific Highpoint and are the Clubs primary contact with the owner.  Their mission is to understand the owners concerns and are considered the face of the Club.  Highpointer, and former Liaisons Chair, Charlie Winger established a more robust network of communication with the appointment of Regional Coordinators who work closely with the Highpoint Liaisons in their region.

The Club still needs Highpoint Liaisons for:

  • AZ, ID, NV, NM, OR and WY in the West Region.
  • DE and NY in the Northeast Region
  • MN, SD, MI and NE in the Midwest Region
  • AL, OK and Puerto Rico in the South Region

The Highpoint Helper concept is a creation by, none other than, “Guru Jakk” Longacre for volunteers to help answer questions and provide advice about specific Highpoints. Helpers offer a variety of services and may provide directions, local conditions, tips, advice or perhaps even guide members.  Please feel free to get in touch with them as their contact information is listed in the current Membership Directory.

The Club still needs Highpoint Helpers for:

  • As for Helpers we need folks in ID, WY and MS

Please contact Stony Burk if interested.  Here’s your chance to help out the Club, the Highpoint and meet other Highpointers in the process. Email Highpointer Liaisons Chair Stony Burk at:

2010 Highpointers Annual Convention in Mississippi…

Registration has now started for the 2010 Highpointers Club Annual Convention to be held October 7th – 9th highlighting the Mississippi Highpoint on Woodall Mountain.  This convention is being held in the Fall due to the brutal heat that befalls the “Deep South” in the Summer. It is understandable that some of the younger members will not be able to make it due to school commitments so that’s why it’s going to be held over Columbus Day Weekend with hope that as many as possible will be able to make it.  School Credit and Excused Absence may pertain in some cases.  Please contact Gary White at for more information.

At the Convention Headquarters we have rooms blocked for Highpointers with a rate of $84.00 per night. Please contact the Holiday Inn Florence/Sheffield, 4900 Hatch Blvd, Sheffield AL 35660 – Phone: 256.381.4710. It is located in the center of the Sheffield, Muscle Shoals and Florence area in beautiful North Alabama near the intersection of US Highways 72 and 43.

Below is the pdf file and/or Word file for the Convention & Agenda.  You may have to download Adobe Reader to open the pdf file.

It’s free and easy to download.

2010 Convention Agenda & Registration Application (pdf. file)

Mississippi 2010 Registration – Word file

Convention Area Information and Travel Guides…

Alabama Bureau of Tourism –   Colbert County AL Florence AL

Mississippi Department of TourismMississippi River Experience Natchez Trace Parkway (NPS) Corinth MS

Tennessee Department of Tourism –  Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Shiloh Nat’l Military Park (NPS) Memphis TN

Three Day Weekend Special in Central Wisconsin…

Nearly twenty area hotels in the Wausau WI (Central WI) area are helping you make the most of your travel budget by offering Sunday Nights FREE with a Friday and Saturday night stay. That’s right!  Pay the regular published rate for Friday and Saturday night and you’ll get Sunday night for free!  “Three Day Weekends” are available every weekend in 2010 so just Click Here for more information and get ready for your adventure.

Highpointing Gear, Books, Guides…

Check out all items at: The Highpointers Merc

Don’t Confuse this Site with the Kenton Merc

New Shipping prices now apply!!!  First time in 10 years!!!

***   We accept credit cards through Paypal.  The process is totally automated and secure.   ***

Road Work, Conditions and Construction…

Guadalupe Peak Texas Flood Issues…

On 4-15-2010 Guadalupe Mountains National Park Chief Ranger BJ Ratlief announced the temporary closure of McKittrick Canyon and Permian Reef Trails due to high water and trail damage. Within the 48 hours the park had received 1-3 inches of rain in two separate events, depending on the location. Trail conditions will be assessed each morning and park trails will be reopened as soon as possible. The Williams Ranch Rd. will also be monitored and possibly closed. Visitors may contact the park at 915.828.3251 to receive the latest information on trail conditions and discuss hiking alternatives.

Baxter State Park Maine…

Winter is slowly leaving the Park. The Tote Road is closed to vehicle traffic but expect areas between Togue Pond and Abol Hill and Matagamon and Trout Brook Crossing to open in the coming weeks. The remainder of the Tote Road will open to traffic in sections as dictated by road conditions. The Park Tote Road is open to hiking from the Park gates at Togue Pond and Matagamon. All Katahdin and Traveler trails are closed to hiking until conditions improve. Day Use Parking reservations now available to Maine residents. Reservable on-line or by phone – check this website for more info. Current as of 4/13/2010. Revised rules pdf file Click Here

U.S. Highway 64 (TN, GA, NC & SC Area) Reopens After Rock Slide…

Traffic is flowing again on U.S. 64 in the Ocoee River Gorge in southeast Tennessee, where rock slides in November and January made it impassible.  The Tennessee Department of Transportation reopened the highway before noon on Wednesday the 14th of April..

The route that carries traffic between Interstate 75 and the North Carolina state line was buried when part of Little Frog Mountain slid onto it, then a second slide occurred nearby.  A contractor cleared the debris, stabilized the slope with bolts and repaired the road.  This road is one of the handy routes used in doing the lower part of the “Southern Six-Pack.” Located in the area where Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina meet.

I-40 Closure at the North Carolina and Tennessee State Line…

NCDOT estimates that it will reopen I-40 by late April when work at the October rockslide site should be completed. At least one mile of the westbound lane closest to the mountain will be closed until this summer to allow crews to complete the work.

Travelers still can reach Western North Carolina via I-40 from the east and I-26 to the north and south. Exits 20 and 27 on I-40 provide access to popular destinations west of Asheville. In Tennessee, exits 432 through 451 provide access to popular destinations in southeastern Tennessee.

The detour route is 53 miles longer and is an additional 45 minutes to an hour driving time. Motorists traveling on I-40 W should take Exit 53B (I-240 W) in Asheville NC and follow I-240 W to Exit 4A (I-26 W). Follow I-26 W (NC Scenic Highway) to I-81 S in Tennessee. Take I-81 S and follow it back to I-40 at mile marker 421. Eastbound motorists should use the reverse directions.

Motorists are reminded to stay alert, follow instructions on the message boards on the highways, obey the posted speed limit, leave early and travel at non-peak times when possible. Plan ahead before driving by visiting their Traveler Information Website at or calling 511, the state’s free travel information line, for current travel conditions. Also alerts about traffic congestion and construction work are on Twitter. Go to for daily rockslide updates and visit the NCDOT website at and click on the I-40 rockslide daily news and information section or follow work on the rockslide project on Twitter at

Road Opened on April 9th – Noon From Asheville NC to Mount Mitchell…Mount Mitchell State Park was opened to vehicular traffic 1200 hrs 4/9 from Asheville on the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP). Access remains open from NC 80. Closures are still in effect South of Asheville and North of NC 80 on the Parkway Call the BRP automated line at 828-298-0398 for up-to-date road closure info.

Major Road Work in the Smokies in 2010…

The Great Smokies National Park is planning more than $44 million in major improvements to 56 miles of park roads, a campground and a popular trailhead parking area. The repaving projects include the road to Clingmans Dome and the meandering 11-mile loop around scenic Cades Cove..

Clingmans Dome road will be closed from February 15 to May 28, then intermittently opened until June 18.  Other work is planned next spring and summer on Newfound Gap Road between Gatlinburg TN and Cherokee NC. .To minimize the impact on traffic they plan to work very hard to minimize this inconvenience through scheduling as much work as possible between February and Memorial Day.

Climb Up So Kids Can Grow Up Campaign…

Climb Up the Fifty is a fundraising event created to benefit kids with AIDs. Created by the American Foundation for Children with AIDs, this charity challenge invites climbing and hiking enthusiasts to select and train for a challenging climb or hike while raising funds through sponsorships. All funds raised are donated to African children with AIDs.

Highpoint Visitation Dates and Times…

Illinois – Charles Mound Visitation 2010…

The Highpoint owners have set the weekend visitation dates for 2010.  Please visit on these days and during daylight hours only.  June 5th – 6th, July 3rd – 4th, August 7th – 8th and September 4th – 5th are the only visitation weekends.

Campbell Hill Ohio…

Ohio Hi-Point Career Center sits atop the highest point in Ohio at 1,549 feet above sea level. Because this is now a school campus, the highest point is accessible to the public during the week. The Campus is open Monday – Friday: 6:30am – 10:00pm, Saturday: 6:30am – 3:30pm and is closed on Sundays.  Special arrangements for visits at other times can be made by contacting the Facilities/Grounds Dept. at 937.599.3010 –  Ext. 211

Kentucky Waiver – This is Mandatory for Visitation!!!

Black Mountain is privately owned by a coal company.  There are active mines, as well as sink holes, in the area so the company has made the waiver mandatory for visits.  You MUST first obtain this waiver by clicking this link and download it Black Mountain KY Waiver Click Here!

Complete this waiver and mail it to the following address before you visit. If for some reason you cannot return it in time, please make sure you have it with you!!!

PENN – VA Operating Company
Attn: Steve Looney
2550 E. Stone Drive Ste #200
Kingsport, Tennessee 37660-5863

More Highpointers Needed for PowerPoint Presentations…

Local groups, civic groups and any like minded organization would surely like this presentation.  Here’s your chance to step up and help Highpointing while doing it. This PowerPoint document contains pictures provided by various members.  You are encouraged to add, or delete, photos from this Disc to create your own personalized presentation.

  • Presentation suggestions are for:
  • You to set up a scheduled talk for 60 minutes
  • Using the prepared presentation lasting 45-50 minutes
  • Allowing the final 10 minutes for questions
  • The Presentation will usually include:
  • Benefits of Highpointing and Club Membership.
  • The Club’s role in assisting members
  • About the “Apex to Zenith” Newsletters
  • About the Conventions
  • Availability of Guidebooks
  • The “Klimbin Kollaborator” Column
  • Maintaining Access to all Highpoints
  • Explaining what Highpointing is about
  • Who and how the Highpointers Club got started
  • Number of Club members and number of 50 and lower 48 finishers
  • How state highpoints vary considerably in difficulty, elevation and danger

If interested, please contact Bill Deitzer at: or 513.777.4435.  Bill and Rosemary would like to also thank the many Club members for their Highpointing pictures that permitted this PowerPoint presentation to come together!  More pictures… send them on!!!

Please include your mailing address with your offer to present.  Bill will send you a CD with the PowerPoint file and other helpful information.  Brochures, and other club information, will be sent to you as well.


Leave your count changes, as well as address changes on the voice mail, or send via text messaging.

  • Just listen to the directions, don’t get excited (it’s just a recording)
  • Give your updates, reports, address changes, email changes, etc.
  • Add your Family Members free as long as their at the same address as you.
  • If you think you didn’t get it right, just call us again, no problem
  • This is an unmanned line. Don’t expect a call back
  • Remember – Text and Voice Messages only

***  865.660.0027 ***

Text and Voice Message Updates

Websites that May Help You to Plan Your Trips…

  • Diner City – Your “Online Guide” to classic Diners and the American Roadside. Add and correct as you see them along the way. Be sure to take their tour of the “Top 10 Best Diners.”
  • The Wi-Fi-FreeSpotT – This Directory has a listing of locations that offer Free Wi-Fi Service in the USA with State-by-State listings. Other regions of the World are also listed further down the page.
  • Festival FinderThe site where you’ll discover the latest details on more than 2,500 music festivals in North America. Search by your favorite genre or use the Find By feature to locate festivals by date, location or name.
  • Fuelly –  This is a site that lets you track, share and compare your gas mileage. Simply sign up, add a car or motorcycle, and begin tracking your mileage. To date, 25,894 Fuelly users have tracked 558,021 fuel-ups in 33,938 vehicles over 156,010,252 miles of driving.
  • Route4me –  This is different from the traditional navigation websites. Just enter multiple addresses into their system and they’ll automatically calculate thousands, or millions, of route combinations to bring back the shortest possible route between all your destinations.
  • Yelp* –  One of the most popular review sites online today, here you will find thousands of reviews on local businesses. You can read up or post a review on restaurants, nightlife, shopping and more! Getting started is easy and free.
  • MapMyHikeT –  Plot your hike over mountains, through the woods and on any trail with just a few mouse clicks. Once your hiking map is complete you can quickly view it in 3-D, Satellite Maps, or share it with friends. There are plenty of great free features, but paid membership will give you even more.
  • The National Weather Service –  These emergency links are the best means to receive warnings that are continuously broadcasted and updated.
  • NOAA Weather Radio –  Providing 24 hour broadcasts of local weather information and warnings of severe weather specific to each of its broadcast locations. This program also has the distinction of providing warning information for any and all hazards that may affect the communities served by local NWR broadcasts, as well as warnings that are disseminated on a state and/or national level.
  • HostelWorld –  Online confirmed bookings, city guides, sightseeing, entertainment and backpacking information for hostels and backpacker hostels around the world.
  • Motel AmericanaThis website shares their enthusiasm for a special, and poignant, part of Americana and one which is slipping into obscurity, the Motel.

“CREW Members” & Others Needed!!!

“The CREW” –  A group of members who wish to volunteer a minimum of 1 hour at any convention doing on-site registration.

  • The Benefits and Pay Include:
  • On the Job Training
  • Making new friends
  • Meeting and greeting many of the convention attendees
  • A reserved seat at the banquet with fellow “CREW Members”
  • Recognition at the banquet for all your tremendous hard work
  • Great praise from the host after the convention is finished
  • All the goodies you can eat at the registration table
  • The satisfaction that you have given your club a valuable service

So how’s that for a GREAT job!!!

The “CREW” needs you for the Mississippi in 2010 Konvention and other functions when available.  One hour or two – what ever you can spare.  We look forward to having you join us!  We can use some folks to help by sitting in at the Wilderness Wildlife Week in Pigeon Forge TN January 2011.

To come on board just email Nikki Hemphill at or call 219-545-2169 and you will be hired.  See you in Mississippi in October.

Returning or Renewing…

You may renew your membership dues by either going to, click on the “Membership Tab” at the top of the page and paying online or send the dues of $20 per year to: Highpointers Club, PO Box 6364, Sevierville TN 37864-6364.

Many members are opting to pay for three years at a time ($60).  By doing this, it makes it easier to keep your membership up to date and really save the Club some time and $$$’s.

Be sure to email your most recent changes in address and counts.  You may send me your trip reports and I’ll pass them along to the Editors as well. or The Hotline 865.660.0027 (Voice and Text)

Future Dates for Events…

Highpointers Club Annual Convention Honoring Mississippi October 7th – 9th, 2010

Wilderness Wildlife Week in Pigeon Forge Tennessee January 8th – 15th, 2011

***  Check out the FAQ’s page at for the most recent asked questions.

A Banner & Button for Your Website…

You may also right click the graphic that you choose to use on your mouse and select “Save As” in your “My Pictures” file. After doing that, you can add the graphic to your website using your page editor and link it to

Help us pass the word along through your own website!!! Be sure to let us know where you are using these so we can enjoy looking at your site.

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