|Hiking Trail Conditions Report|
||Bondcliff, Mt. Bond, West Bond, Mt. Guyot, Zealand Mountain, NH|
||Lincoln Woods Trail, Bondcliff Trail, West Bond Spur, Twinway, Zealand Spur, Zealand Trail, Zealand Road, snowmobile trail|
|Date of Hike:
||Saturday, January 14, 2017|
|Parking/Access Road Notes:
||Parked at US 302 lot and Lincoln Woods. Lincoln Woods was pretty icy. |
||Ice - Blue, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Snow/Ice - Frozen Granular, Snow/Ice - Postholes |
|Water Crossing Notes:
||Lower Bondcliff crossings were open but rock hoppable with care. Upper two crossings were still bridged. Crossings above hut are also bridged. Open crossing on Zealand Trail rock hoppable with care. |
|Trail Maintenance Notes:
||We took out a few blowdowns, but blowdowns and leaners still remain on pretty much every trail. Bondcliff Trail (above Wilderness Trail junction) and Twinway very brushy in places. |
|Lost and Found:
||Lincoln Woods Trail was an uneven, frozen mess from all of the barebooting. We found snowshoes helped keep our ankles in better shape. Bondcliff Trail (aka Wilderness Trail) was much smoother. We kept our snowshoes on, but others were able to Microspike the flats without issue. Maybe 12-18 inches of snowpack.|
Ascent on Bondcliff Trail had some areas of running water from the blowouts and erosion. There was also an extended stretch of moose postholes. Some were able Microspike at least the lower half as far as we could tell without too much issue. Above the top water crossing, snowshoes seemed necessary due to the deep snowpack and drifted over (then frozen over) footbed. Pretty decent snowshoeing at this point. Snowpack of perhaps 3 feet.
Snowpack crust is firm enough to support snowshoes pretty much everywhere at elevation. Ideal time to bushwhack. Barebooters will break through, however, and go in deeply.
Hillary's Stumble was doable in snowshoes, as the bottom is filling in and one could sort of traverse around the blue ice on it. Snowshoes helpful in the scrub above there, as lots of spruce traps threatened.
Treeline to Bondcliff was a combination of firm snow, blue ice, and bare rock. We kept our snowshoes on, as the blue ice could have been iffy for Microspikes in a few places on either end of the summit.
Heading across the ridge, there's a good cornice much of the way, which we took instead of the trail since it was smooth sailing. A little spruce trappy when it ran out and we needed to get back to the corridor. From there up to Bond, the snow depth increased and it was fairly decent going.
Bond is windloaded on the northeast side...found a very deep spruce trap when looking at the improved views the drifts provided. From the summit down to the shelter is perhaps 4 feet of snowpack with deeper drifts.
West Bond Spur was a little bit awkward, as it had appeared to have been used between the rain events this week. Fortunately the hiker wore snowshoes, so the snowshoe postholes weren't as deep or dangerous as the barebooted alternative.
The south face of South Guyot is fairly bare with some ice and frozen granular on the actual trail. Plenty of snow on the back side, but some ice on the ascent up to the true summit as well. Other than a a short stretch up Bond, this was about the only place we felt a breeze the whole day.
Plenty of snow between Guyot and Zealand. Areas of awkward snowshoe postholes. Some deep drifts have set up in places as well, including alongside the Zealand Spur.
Ladder above Zeacliff Pond as a little tricky to descend, but some snow alongside it provided purchase.
Steep descent to the hut is hardpack.
Zealand Trail is a postholed mess in places, courtesy the postholing brigades.
Upper 2.5 miles of Zealand Road are also rough. A vehicle was driven up to the water department area, so to some extend the tracks provided better walking. We opted to boot at this point.
The bottom mile of Zealand Road is glare blue ice. We kept to the side of it, where there was some snow.
The short snowmobile trail section from the end of the road to the US 302 parking lot was also quite icy.
Overall, despite the postholes, this was pretty darned good going as far as winter Bonds traverses go. We started at 6 and were done at 4. No trail breaking, no showstopping ice, etc. Nice blue skies for the first half as well.
||rocket21, Nordic Gal |
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.