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  • Writer's pictureParker DePond

Zealand Falls Rage…

3/8/24 Day 3.1


Zealand Falls Rage… The trail to the hut was rather dangerous, with many fast-moving water crossings. They should be, and typically are, just trickles, but they have been fueled by the unusually warm weather and rain that exacerbated these forces. An even more destructive force than the rain that fell like lava onto styrofoam, is the fog containing 3,000 J/gm to the rains 300J/gm.

Never before have I been able to hear the falls from inside the hut. I kept thinking that the wind was blowing, but the sound lacked the distinctive ebb and flow of wind through a valley. On all other nights, the falls lay dormant, blanketed by sound-damping snow and ice, causing the loudest thing in the hut to be my thoughts and wristwatch. The Loki sun that took away my skiing is admittedly nice to enjoy on a rock surrounded by defining white noise.


I am afraid I have run out of things to say. Too tired is I to talk about myself, thankfully I have yet to run out of curiosity, and that will lead to endless conversations with whoever finds themselves in the Zealand hut. I wonder if people will be receptive to me starting philosophical conversations, or at least airing towards that topic. I am tired of hiking small talk.


There is a lovely group here tonight, and they hiked up Maple Peacan cookies for me. They said it was between this and beer, and they didn't want to hike beer, a very logical leap in reasoning. I found someone tonight who works with noble gas production, and I asked him if it was true that there was a helium shortage in the world, and he said that there was. There are 11 helium production plants in the world, and one of them went offline, and one of them was in Russia, so there was a shortage. I then got to learn about the economy of China’s helium supply. Apparently, they haven't been buying much, so he thinks they have already built plant number 12, but his company is also building plant number 12 in Texas, where a deposit has been found.


A high school group showed up, and by talking to one of the chaperones, I found out that he is a Professor at Brown and studies thermodynamic gene expression in plants to determine how they can express genes to make them more resistant to climate change.

3/9/24 Day 3.2


30 people tonight and 5 in the crew room, including myself. 18 are Boy Scouts of all ages. It is easily the loudest that I have ever heard, people have to yell just to talk about their day. I wish the people visiting would join me downstairs, but like I, at this moment, are hiding from the chaos.

3/10/24 Day 3.3


I wonder if watching someone from birth is a pain or a joy. Surely you want to change their life for the better, but how effective is that? By the time your life is ending, for better or for worse, you will have a good idea of what makes people people. Or at least think that you do. Is this why the young eat the old and the old don't respect the young? With wisdom does confidence come?

3/11/24 Day 3.4


7in of snow fell last night, and 80mph winds are predicted today. Shoveling is pointless until the snow gets heavy or the wind dies. I did the weather report at my desk naked in a sleeping bag an interesting site to see thankfully, no one was around except Jack Frost.

Radio contact has been shotty at best, for the past two weeks, Zealand has not been able to talk to anyone except lonesome, and last night I lost that ability. I truly and finally felt alone. I was shamefully filled with confidence like it was finally time to prove my worth as a caretaker.

8 people in one big group came in last night. They have little to no interest in talking to me, which is fine… Awquare at times, as they talk about things and people that only have context to them, but fine.

One of them is a physical trainer, and the rest are engineers of some kind, one works for Lakeed Martain, and one for Facebook. The rest, idk. None want to have ‘interesting’ conversations/philosophical conversations, so I stoke the fire as they talk about wet boots and gear just like their predecessors dating back to 1932. At this point, even the wood of the hut groans when people talk about trail conditions.

I eventually was able to have an interesting conversation with the physical trainer and his wife, we spoke about how upbringings affect people and how there are some hypotheses that mild autism is the next evolution in humans, being really good and passionate about one particular thing. I also apparently asked some questions to the wife that the husband was unaware off. He said, “I learn more about you every day.”


Whatever videos I take, words that I write, or sentences I speak, nothing will convey the feeling of watching snow spiral on the otherside of a frostbit window while Birch smoke lingers in the air.

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