Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Hale, Zealand Mountain, Mt. Guyot, West Bond, Mt. Bond, Bondcliff, NH
Trails: Herd path, North Twin Trail, Fire Wardens Trail, Lend-A-Hand Trail, Twinway, Zeacliff Spur, Zealand spur, Bondcliff Trail, West Bond Spur, Lincoln Woods Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Thursday, April 28, 2016
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Plenty of room at Lincoln Woods of course. Georg dropped us off at the Little River turnaround; we were the only car there at the time. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Snow - Unpacked Powder, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Stable), Snow - Spring Snow 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Light Traction 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Rock hops all. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: No blocking blowdowns. Lend-A-Hand had a couple new ones, a stepover and a step around. Bondcliff had a couple new white birch poles across the trail below Bondcliff a ways which were easy stepovers and a couple down low. The usual wet areas on Lend-A-Hand were still wet, the cold hadn't fixed that, but they weren't bad. There was a few minor muddy/wet spots on Bondcliff down low as the snow melted later in the day. The Zealand Spur sign is missing as people have noted all winter. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: Pepper had fun. No sip n dips today though, it was wintry for much of the day and cooling off wasn't a priority. He had a little bit of snow balling up on his legs, which ate periodically and was most of the water he had today. He also got to play with some squeaky toys on the Lincoln Woods trail. 
Bugs: None! 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: It was a very wintry day until we hit Bond. There was a fair amount of snow on the trails leading up to it, ranging from 2-5", and much of it was powdery. A stiff wind and chilly temps made it feel more like winter than much of winter felt. I barebooted until the last switchback on Hale when the snow over ice was giving way. But due to their prior wear, the cold temps and the snow, they were essentially useless so I took them off since the spikes tend to aggravate the outer ball of my foot. I put Hillsounds on for the upper section leading to Zeacliff after showing them to some USFS people we passed who were in various ineffectual traction, and they helped some, but due to the snow depth the best approach was to simple use an existing bootprint. I removed them for the ledges after Zeacliff and kept them off for a long time, again for the ball of the foot. After the short ledge section there was plenty of snow if someone wanted to keep them on. I put them back on for the descent of West Bond but that was unnecessary; the powdery snow made them pretty much useless. I took them off for the Bondcliff ledges and put them back on for the descent from Bondcliff. They helped some, the snow below Bondcliff tended to be much less than north and it was also wet snow (but not really slush) due to the sun and milder temps. Half way down Bondcliff the snow pretty much disappeared and I had removed them for the last time. The hike out the latter part of Bondcliff and LW was on mostly dry trail in the sun with little wind and milder although not warm temps.

Other than the USFS group, which included a biologist looking for bat signs at Guyot, and two AMC people who were with but ahead of them, we only saw five other people and enjoyed chatting with them. Three were in a group wearing trail runners, two in shorts, who did the three Bonds from LW. They did mention that the cold wind was tough on their legs in the am. They passed us on LW running their way out. Maybe that is the best way to handle that long slog but my feet would hate me.

We rarely get a car spot, so when Georg nicely offered to pick us up at Lincoln Woods and drop us off at Little River on his way to TFW and Jackson, we couldn't resist even when the snow came and refused to leave. It was a wonderful day off from work, and a nice leisurely meal break on Bondcliff was possible as the afternoon winds died down and the increasingly powerful sun heated us up. We did much of the hike in Winter, but the end was all Spring. Thanks Georg and of course Pepper for a wonderful day on the trails.  
Name: Pepper and Me 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2016-04-28 
Link: http:// 
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