Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Hale, Zealand Mountain, Mt. Guyot, South Twin Mountain, North Twin Mountain, Galehead Mountain, NH
Trails: Hale Brook Trail, Lend-A-Hand Trail, Twinway, Zealand Spur, North Twin Spur, Frost Trail, Garfield Ridge Trail, Gale River Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Friday, May 15, 2015
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Gale River Rd. just opened. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow - Wet/Sticky, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Unstable), Snow/Ice - Postholes 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Snowshoes 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: All crossings were easy. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes:  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Bugs: Not yet 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: Traction device on the Twinway, 1/3 of the way up S.Twin from the Galehead hut. Left it there, displayed prominently on a rock. 
Comments: Weather-wise, an absolutely gorgeous spring day. Did 80% of the hike in a techwick T-shirt. The Hale Brook Trail was doable easily with bare boots and not too much post holing, Lend-A-Hand also doable, but a little trickier. Caution: probably not stable anymore with continued warm temps. Donned snowshoes 1/2 way up to Zeacliff from the hut, as monorails (both standalone and hidden in snowfields) were unstable. The ridge came with alternating bare and big (4-6' tall) monorail stretches, increasingly unstable as day progressed. Hard time, mostly due to side slipping, with soft monorails on Guyot's backside. Guyot summit was bare. Twinway to S.Twin was pockmarked with huge post holes, some of which swallowed our snowshoes. We passed one of the snowshoe-less culprits. He was having a challenging time. N.Twin spur was a mix of bare stretches, firm snow, and monorails. At the summit, there was a very interesting "knife edge monorail" to traverse. Descending South Twin to the hut was the toughest part of the day, principally because it alternated between stretches of highly unstable monorail that cried for snowshoes, and bare stretches of angular boulders in which snowshoes were a full-on hazard. We tried (to our detriment) to cut corners, but I think about 10 snowshoe-on/off cycles would do it correctly. Frost Trail was mix of soft and marginal monorails and bare spots. The Garfield Ridge Trail and first few 10ths of a mile of Gale River had abundant monorail and remnants thereof to deal with, but was then straightforward and in great shape. My guess is that for at least the next week (i.e., until enough melting can happen), snowshoes will be the order of business above 3600'. Baarring a cold snap, light traction will continue to be irrelevant, as in soft snow it offers no more than already comes with the lugged soles on our boots.  
Name: alexmtn 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2015-05-16 
Link: http:// 
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