|Hiking Trail Conditions Report|
||Mt. Tom, Mt. Field, Mt. Willey, Mt. Carrigain, NH|
||Avalon Trail, A-Z Trail, Mt. Tom Spur, Willey Range Trail, Ethan Pond Trail, Shoal Pond Trail, Carrigain Notch Trail, Desolation Trail, Signal Ridge Trail, Sawyer River Road|
|Date of Hike:
||Monday, May 21, 2018|
|Parking/Access Road Notes:
||Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Unstable), Snow/Ice - Small Patches |
|Water Crossing Notes:
||All were pretty easy and dry rock hops except for East Branch Pemigewasset at Stillwater Jct., which was a below-knee wade. I wore Crocs. It was c-c-c-cold! |
|Trail Maintenance Notes:
||See comments! |
|Lost and Found:
||A perfect weather day for a favorite long hike today.|
Sporadic monorail on Mt. Tom Spur, between Tom and Field, and Field and Willey. Easy to pick your way around; no need for traction (although I carried spikes all day - grrr!) No snow/ice descending Willey via Willey Range Trail to Ethan Pond Trail/AT. A few blowdowns here and there, nothing major, although one on A-Z is rather large. On Ethan Pond Trail there weren't many, if any, blowdowns. I've already forgotten...
Shoal Pond Trail... Okay, the trail is Wilderness-y enough already. I counted every tree at least 3" in diameter that I had to step over. 520 of 'em! Five hundred twenty. (Not complaining, just stating a fact. I actually love this trail.) The good news is that over 90% of them are lying flat on the ground. The closer you get to Stillwater Jct., the more thigh-, hip-, and waist-high they become. The trail was generally on the wet side (haha), but my feet actually stayed pretty dry. Lots and lots of bog bridges, some nearing the end of their lives. Water crossings were easy rock hops.
From Stillwater Jct. to Desolation Trail on Carrigain Notch Trail (0.8 mile), it looks like a mini hurricane went through. Lots of trees down, many of them big, many walk arounds and crawl unders. I'd say around 50. No problem following the trail through here although there are diverging herd paths leading, presumably, to campsites. At the CNT/Desolation Trail jct., there are many trees down, including one holding two signs.
Surprisingly, Desolation Trail was in good shape! (Special thanks to that maintainer. Looks to be taken good care of.) There were maybe 15-20 blowdowns, but they were all smaller and could be cut with a hand saw. A few patches of lingering snow and ice that could be easily negotiated. Signal Ridge had a half dozen or so blowdowns.
I threw many, many branches and smaller trees off the trails today and unplugged a few waterbars where they actually existed. Saw only 2 people all day until I was headed down Carrigain. Saw a moose at Shoal Pond; we had a 10-minute staring contest across the pond. The moose won. :)
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.