Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Adams, Mt. Madison, NH
Trails: Air Line Trail, Short Line Trail, Cabin-Cascades Trail, Hincks Trail, Spur Trail, Trail from Crag Camp to Gray Knob, Lowe's Path, Gulfside Trail, Jefferson Loop Trail, Gulfside Trail, Israel Ridge Path, Star Lake Trail, Osgood Trail, Valley Way Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Saturday, January 21, 2017
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Plenty of parking spaces at Appalachia at 7:45 am 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Snow - Packed Powder/Loose Granular, Ice - Breakable Crust, Snow - Wet/Sticky, Snow/Ice - Small Patches 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Light Traction 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Only crossed brooks small enough to step across 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes:  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: Wore Hillsounds for the whole hike. Was tempted to take them off on some bare sections above tree line. On Jefferson and on the Star Lake Trail, I wished I had brought crampons and an ice axe.

The trails from the Short Line Trail to Crag Camp had a couple inches of unpacked snow on them, but one person with snowshoes and one with light traction had gone before me. Lowe's Path above tree line had little snow. In general, the northwest slopes above tree line had very little snow, whereas the southeast slopes had 2-3 feet snow. All of the trails were well-packed, and I was never tempted to put on my snowshoes.

The trails above tree line had seen a fair amount of traffic, and the tracks of other hikers made the trails easy to follow. That was helpful, because the ridge was in the clouds all day and there were some long-ish sections on the Gulfside Trail and Jefferson Loop Trail with no visible cairns.

It was windy (~ 40-50 mph) on the western half of the Gulfside Trail, on the Jefferson Loop Trail, and at the summits. The temperatures were above freezing. The fog soaked the outside of my pack and my jacket, but the moisture didn't penetrate. It did freeze on my pack and glasses, and I switched to googles for the return trip from Jefferson over Adams.

I only had one view on the hike, but it was one of the best I have ever seen. The summit of Adams was just barely above the clouds when I got there, and I could see across the Great Gulf to Washington. The clouds were flowing over the range and down into the Great Gulf, driven by the wind. Unfortunately, I didn't think to take a video. I did get some pictures, however. A link to the best one is below.

Name: Bill Tidd 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2017-01-21 
Bookmark and Share 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.

Copyright 2009-2024, All Rights Reserved