|Hiking Trail Conditions Report|
||Mt. Whiteface, Mt. Passaconaway, NH|
||Blueberry Ledge Trail, Rollins Trail, Dicey's Mill Trail|
|Date of Hike:
||Sunday, May 6, 2018|
|Parking/Access Road Notes:
||Four or five cars at the Ferncroft lot when we arrived around 8, when we got back around 2 the lot was busy but still had a few spots available. |
||Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Ice - Blue, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Stable), Snow/Ice - Monorail (Unstable), Snow - Spring Snow, Snow/Ice - Postholes |
||Light Traction |
|Water Crossing Notes:
||One water crossing near the end of Dicey's Mill. The water is high, but there is a large tree down that you can walk across - had to carry the dog across because the water was moving too quickly for her. |
|Trail Maintenance Notes:
||Some blowdowns, but nothing impassable, specifically on Rollins. The wind on Friday definitely factored into some of the smaller branches/limbs down on the trails. |
||We had our girl Lily with us but didn't see any other dogs until back at the parking lot at the end of the day. Shes 40lbs and had to be picked up at some of the tougher ledges on Blueberry - very grateful for a backpack with a built in harness/handle. |
||No bugs yet on the trails, but based on the amount of small ones at the parking lot, bug season is well on it's way. |
|Lost and Found:
||This was our first time doing the loop for Whiteface and Passaconaway - we were a bit worried about the rock faces on Blueberry with the dog, but she did fantastic. Blueberry was great, we didn't put spikes on until after getting over Whiteface, but realistically could have used them for the last quarter mile to the summit. The rock faces were dry, so we had no issues getting up to the summit, we did however have to lift the dog between us a few times, with one of us up on the ledge and the other down below hoisting her up. This portion of the trail would be very difficult for some dogs, so definitely know their limit (and yours in terms of being able to pick them up) prior to taking them this way. |
Rollins is where we broke out our spikes - bottom line, this section of the trail you need some form of traction and will for some time. The monorail is intact but becoming quite thin and will become unstable if temperatures stay warm. If you step off, you are going to be postholing, and postholing deep (it happened a handful of times for both of us - I was at one point up to my waist in snow). This portion of the trail is quite peaceful and quiet (aside from the occasional curse word when stepping off the monorail), I loved the small outlooks down to the bowl and being able to look back at Whiteface and seeing Passaconaway out in front of you. Also, lots of moose poop in this area! We felt like we could round a corner at any time and see one, but sadly haven't gotten to experience that yet in the mountains.
At Dicey's Mill we kept our spikes on to get up Passaconaway, which was a trek. Portions of the trail are pure ice from the snow melting and then freezing back over, and traction is 100% needed (we saw a few individuals without traction and it was clearly a struggle for them to get up the trail, and I can only imagine what it was like going down). After summiting we turned around and followed Dicey's Mill back to the parking lot. The monorail was present for about a third of the way down, but it was apparent when we could safely take our spikes off. The rest of the trail was a cake walk - some areas of mud forming at the lower elevations, but nothing you can't get around (or you can take the dog's route and go straight through).
Overall it was a fantastic day to be out in the mountains!
||Michelle H |
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.