The Forty-Sixer

August 26, 2018 — 13 Comments

On August 1, 1918, brothers Robert and George Marshall along with their guide, Herbert Clark, climbed Whiteface Mountain. Nearly seven years later, on June 10, 1925, the three finished climbing the 46 high peaks of the Adirondacks and became the first three members of “The Adirondack Forty-Sixers.”


It would take another eight years for the fourth person to complete the climbs.

The hundredth person to do so finished in 1955, but more and more hikers join the ranks every year. Last year 735 hikers became 46ers and there will probably be another 800  this year.

Much has changed over the last one hundred years at Whiteface Mountain Now you can drive to the top, and hundreds of people do so on nice weekend days. There is a cafe and gift shop just below the summit and a weather station on top of the mountain overlooking the ski resort carved into the forest below it.


There are bike and snowmobile trails at the base of the mountain and observation decks with binoculars at the top.

In the summer of 2014, I decided to climb the Forty-Six. I started with Porter and Cascade and my plan was to save Whiteface Mountain for last and to finish on August 1, 2018, one hundred years after the first climb by the first of the Forty-Sixers.

When that anniversary came I was in Baltimore sitting next to Kathy as she started a new round of chemotherapy. When you fight cancer you do what can be done. And when someone you love has cancer you do not let her fight it alone.

Which is why on August 25, 2018, brothers Matt and Alex Hoskins, along with me their guide, climbed Whiteface Mountain.

And Kathy met us at the top.



13 responses to The Forty-Sixer



    Liked by 1 person

    Sandra Cordes-Vaughan August 26, 2018 at 9:38 am

    Congratulations to you both on pushing through toward success in these physical and emotional journeys. With much admiration. Sandy

    Liked by 1 person

    Terri Frazier Colwell August 26, 2018 at 10:51 am

    Hey Dave! Congrats on completing your 46th! Well done!

    Liked by 1 person


    Congratulations!! What a wonderful way you have of telling a story David! So happy that you were able to fulfill your dream and become a Forty-Sixer and especially glad that Kathy was able to be at the top to greet you! I’m sure you’ll have many more adventures to come.

    Liked by 1 person


    Congrats, Dave!! Bless you for being true to the woman you love! Also, for being a strong & supportive Uncle to three of my favs. Hugs to Kathy for strength & success with her battle. ~ “Aunt Sally”



    That’s a wonderful story, Dave! Congratulations! I’m so happy for you.



    What an incredible finale to a long and wonderful story. So happy to have shared a few of those 46s with you and we will be back in LP next summer, perhaps on a different weekend! Well done Dave esp sharing the last mountain with your entire family. What an adventure!!!



      The trail to the top runs along the stone wall at the last hairpin turn. When I passed there were two cyclists making the final push to the top and I thought of you and your sons. Let me know what weekend you choose next year and we can share some Ubu at the brewery.



    Great job Dave. I’ll have to ride up it sometime!

    Liked by 1 person


    Great job, Dave. It was good to see you and Kathy this summer.

    Liked by 1 person

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