|Hiking Trail Conditions Report|
||Speckled Mountain, Durgin Mountain, ME|
||Cold Brook Trail, Evergreen Link, Red Rock Trail, Great Brook Trail|
|Date of Hike:
||Saturday, May 13, 2023|
|Parking/Access Road Notes:
||Room for a few cars on the shoulder of Adams Road just before the trail sign for Cold Brook Trail. We spotted a car at the Miles Notch trailhead (Hut Road is gated beyond it) - room for 3 or 4 cars there. There's also room to park for Evergreen Link either right at the trailhead (a few cars) or at the parking lot for Evergreen Valley Inn (significantly more room). Hut Road is dirt for the last bit, and has some potholes - take it slowly. The roads leading to the trailheads for Cold Brook Trail and Evergreen Link are paved, but still rough in spots. |
||Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Mud - Significant, Leaves - Significant/Slippery |
|Water Crossing Notes:
||Nothing difficult at all. The crossing of Great Brook on its eponymous trail was a simple rock hop. |
|Trail Maintenance Notes:
||Many blowdowns on Red Rock Trail, including a few that we had to bushwhack around. Lots of mud in many different places across the whole hike, including some mudpits that required bushwhacking around and some old roads that were very muddy. Signs were all in place. |
||They'll need to be careful on the steep sections of Great Brook Trail. Otherwise, they shouldn't have any issues. |
||Plenty down low, on the lower section of Cold Brook Trail and on Evergreen Link. Mostly absent on the upper Cold Brook Trail since it was windier. Not bad on Red Rock Trail. But they were swarming at the junction with Great Brook Trail, so we put on our headnets for the descent of Great Brook. I pulled two ticks off me after the hike, so check yourself carefully. |
|Lost and Found:
||This was a long but very rewarding hike. We started on Cold Brook Trail from Adams Road. The dirt road that the trail follows had some muddy spots but wasn't terrible. The left and then right after reaching the old house was straightforward. The section after that was on a steadily climbing logging road that was wet in many places, but it wasn't difficult to follow. Eventually, we reached a fork - the larger logging road goes to the left, but the trail goes to the right, and there's a sign for it if you look carefully. The next one or two tenths is through an EXTREMELY overgrown and brushy area - the trail is very faint and we were constantly pushing through undergrowth, but we made it through. The trail then becomes less brushy up to the junction with Evergreen Link.|
I needed to redline Evergreen Link, so I did an out and back on it. And it's one of the nicest and smoothest approach trails I've hiked. All sections of the trail, from the upper footpath section to the middle gradual old road to the lower steeper old road, had very good footing, and there are signs to keep you on track. Above Evergreen Link, Cold Brook Trail first climbs somewhat steeply through the woods on a path that is eroded in places but easy to follow. Then it emerges on the ledges - the ledgy sections had cairns (more than I would've expected on a trail in a Wilderness) and were easy to follow. Views were excellent from the open ledges. The trail then ascends moderately for a few tenths to the summit. No snow on the trail at all.
Red Rock Trail drops steeply from Speckled Mountain, and then has minor ups and downs as it goes over Durgin Mountain. I found that I like Red Rock Trail - it's clearly a wilderness trail, and has its share of blowdowns, mudpits, and debris, but it's never especially rough nor was it hard to follow. If it wasn't so difficult and time-consuming to get to, I'd definitely go back soon. Great Brook Trail, on the other hand, feels like a slog. The steep upper section is quite time-consuming, especially since it has a lot of slippery leaves and mudpits (sometimes in the same place), and the lower part along the old roads just seems to take forever, especially at the end of a long day. It didn't help that we had to walk an extra 0.8 miles down Hut Road since it's gated just after the Miles Notch trailhead.
I saw a pair of hikers on Evergreen Link, there were at least a dozen people at the summit of Speckled, and then we didn't see anyone on Red Rock or Great Brook. Very fun day!
Disclaimer: Reports are not verified - conditions may vary. Use at own risk. Always be prepared when hiking. Observe all signs. Trail conditions reports are not substitutes for weather reports or common sense.