An advocate of traditional living and natural spirit teachings. Topics address concerns to do with wellness and balance in life as well as environmental enrichment. A student of native teachings from Ojibwe Elders, Algonquin language based people, living throughout the Great Lakes Region of the US and Canada. The audiences for presentations vary from youth to elderly.
Saturdays are really busy on Mt Monadnock. Hikers come from
all over the world to walk her
trails and see the beautiful views from the
summit. The particular Saturday I remember is when I opened the park. Our
regular hikers start showing up around seven or eight o:clock and we greet each
one as they come in. At about nine o:clock one of our regulars mentioned that
he saw a large tour bus headed up Rte 202 and wondered if it was on the way
here to the park. I told him no buses were scheduled and that we normally do
not allow buses on Saturdays because of the amount of traffic and limited
parking. We started watching for the bus, knowing it would be coming. Then we
received a radio call from the Old Tow Road entry. Taylor called over to let us
know a bus had passed her entry traveling toward Marlboro, NH.
So the bus was not headed toward the park! Well, kinda not
headed toward the park. A few minutes later we got a radio call from Taylor
indicating that one of the resident neighbors was at her gate and complaining
that a large bus had stopped in front of his home and let out about fifty
people who crossed his land and started up the mountain. The manager came by
our toll booth at about that time and we determined that we should intercept
them along the trail and let them know they need to use the entry as well as
pay the hiker fee at the park. I suggested to the manager that I could go over
to the Old Toll Road entry and help out. She said that would be fine and off I
When I arrived at the Old Toll Road one of the rangers had
already gone up the mountain to look for the errant hikers. Taylor was still at
the booth and told me that our neighbor resident was really mad and gave her a
I asked her to describe the man. She told me he was middle
aged with a grey beard and long hair. I had a feeling that I knew who she was
describing. A year before one of the park trucks broke down in front of a neighbors
house. We had to leave the truck to be towed and this neighbor was less than
friendly about it. Then I decided to take a ride over to his place.
As I thought might be the case, there in front of his place
was a huge tour bus parked along side of the road. I went up to the bus and
tapped on the window. Pretty soon the driver came to the door. I introduced
myself and asked if he had let people off at that place to climb the mountain.
He said he knew this was not right and tried to tell the tour guide that. When
he passed the sign for the park entry he figured something was funny. He told
me the tour guide told him that the guide knew what he was doing and to just
I replied to him; “Well, you have two choices. You can stay
here and the Marlboro Police will be by in a few minutes to give you a huge
ticket for parking here, or, you can follow me back to headquarters and wait
for your passengers there.”
The bus driver did not have to think too hard on that one.
Soon the bus was following me back up to the main entry of the park to wait for
his passengers. The hikers were intercepted and told to come down to
headquarters after the hike to pay the fees and depart on their bus.
After a few hours we received a call from Taylor at the Old
Toll Road. The hikers had come down
to that entry and the tour guide insisted
that we send the bus over to pick them up. The park manager came on the radio
and told Taylor to tell the tour guide that the bus would be sent over when we
had confirmation that the fees had been paid. The total fee for all of the
hikers came to $100.00 for twenty hikers. The tour guide complained a little
more but finally relented and paid the hiking fee. The bus was sent over and
all was good.
All of the tour guides I have encountered that come to the
mountain are happy to pay the fee. They understand that the park is maintaining
trails, facilities and patrolling the mountain to help hikers as well as
protecting the mountain. It is rare for someone to go to such extremes to avoid
supporting the park.
By James Beard aka Noodin
“To be centered is to
stand alone together”
One evening I was asleep in my camp. It was a very warm
summer evening and the campground was full. I awoke when headlights shinned
into my Pop-up camper. I had all the flaps down so it was kind of like a screen
room and I was lying on the bed in my shorts with no covers. The light was immense
like spot lights shining in and woke me instantly. I looked out and a girl had
exited the car. She was standing in front of her car lights in nothing more
than very brief panties and a bra. At first I thought I was imagining this but
there she was calling in asking if anyone was there. I answered her and she
said she needed to talk to me and I should come out. I told her to wait a
minute while I put on some clothes. By the time I came out she had grabbed some
clothing from her car and stood waiting for me.
I asked her what the problem was and she explained that she
and her girlfriend were sleeping in their campsite, B-2. She heard a barking
sound. Both girls were in hammock tents. When she looked out with her
flashlight she saw a huge raccoon on the table going through their cooler. She
explained that she shined her light on the Raccoon and tried to shoo it away
but it would not leave. Then she and her friend threw sticks at the Raccoon to
get it to move off. The Raccoon did not run off but instead started to charge
at the girls. As they ran toward their car the other girl tripped and badly
smashed her knee. That girl was sitting in the car sobbing as we talked.
I asked her what she wanted to do and advised her that she
should take her friend to a nearby emergency room for treatment of the injured
knee. She answered that she wanted me to go down to her campsite and make the
Raccoon go away. Well, over time I have learned that Charlie the barking
Raccoon fears no man and I was not about to challenge him at three thirty in
the morning in his own element. I told the girls to go to the emergency room
and if they got back before daylight to come to my camp for the rest of the
night. The girls did not return that
night but Charlie had pretty much torn up the whole campsite. I decided to come
back later to help the girls pick up the site. When I did come back the girls
had gathered their things and were gone.
Every once in awhile I wake at night when I hear Charlie the
barking Raccoon wandering about and I smile remembering the girl in the panties
and bra looking for someone to do battle with him.
by: James B. Beard aka Noodin
“To be centered is to
stand alone together”