Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Willey, Mt. Field, Ethan Pond, NH
Trails: Ethan Pond Trail, Willey Range Trail, A-Z Trail, Zealand Trail, Twinway
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Sunday, December 9, 2018
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: First Car at 7:00AM, last car at 5:30PM 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Snow - Packed Powder/Loose Granular, Snow - Unpacked Powder, Snow - Drifts, Snow/Ice - Postholes 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Snowshoes, Light Traction 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Everything was bridged or short easy hops 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Some blowdowns and lean-overs throughout the day but nothing too terrible. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: Fin's first really big winter hike in the Whites went great. After a moment or hesitation she made it up the one difficult(final) ladder with no problem on Willey. I was extremely worried for the 3.3 post-holed deep powder stretch but she was a trooper and never showed signs of weakness or discomfort. Willey ladder could be tough for some dogs and hoisting a dog up in the icy conditions would be very difficult as well, so only a capable pup should be on that section of trail right now. I would also not advise having a dog on the Ethan Pond Trail between Zeacliffe and Ethan Pond Shelter intersections due to treacherous, deep postholes  
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: Willey, Field, Zealand Hut, Ethan Pond

Snowshoes car to car except for spikes(essential, crampons would have been nice but not mandatory) on the final Willey ladder. There is a special place in hell for the person or people who postholed 3.3 miles of the AT between the Zeacliffe Trail and Ethan Pond Shelter intersections! All trails throughout the day were awesome snowshoe tracks (with the exception of about .2 miles of minor postholing on the A-Z trail just below the Willey Range intersection) up until the Zealand Hut intersection. At this point it was loose, deep powder that had seen no recent traffic, so Dan got to breaking trail and life was good. Then we got past Zeacliffe and BAM! 3.3 straight miles of deep, gnarly, postholed, powder-covered, death trench. This effectively wreaked havoc on our bodies and minds, and our tough and pleasant hike turned into a real slog. Like several times before, Dan bailed out this old crampy man and proved himself the stronger set of legs by breaking all 4.8 miles from the Hut to Ethan Pond-a truly Herculean effort by somebody who had hiked 9 miles up and around Wonalancet the previous day . Many thanks to DJ. I would avoid that section of the AT like the plague for awhile, and if the guilty party is reading this: Did you actually ENJOY postholing thigh-deep for 3.3 miles? I hope you died at that spot where your tracks ended and you are buried under the snow, you goon(s).  
Name: Spence and Dan and Fin the dog 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2018-12-10 
Link: http:// 
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