Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Adams, Mt. Madison, NH
Trails: Castle Trail, Jefferson Loop, Gulfside Trail, Lowes Path, Airline, Osgood Trail, Airline Cutoff, Chemin des Dames, King Ravine Trail, Presidential Rail Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Monday, June 17, 2019
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: No troubles. Castle Trailhead has one of the simple brown "hiker pictogram" signs on Rt 2. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Mud - Minor/Avoidable 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: All water crossings reasonable. First crossing on Castle Trail (over Israel River?) required a little more attention, but we kept our feet dry. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: I don't specifically recall any blowdowns; might've been one on Lowes' Path or King's Ravine? Blazes are not consistent along these trails and the cairns above treeline on Castle aren't truly consistent or large, but for two experienced trail-followers in summer there were no navigational issues. Winter would probably be a different story. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: N/A 
Bugs: Hardly noticeable during the hike, but we hardly stopped below treeline. Deer flies were swarming by the car at the end of the hike though! 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: Helped a teenager and father re-unite after getting separated between Adams and Jefferson! 
Comments: We ascended Jefferson (via Castle Trail), then proceeded to Adams (via Jefferson Loop, Gulfside Trail, and Lowes' Path), then to Madison and the hut (Airline Trail, Gulfside Trail, Osgood Trail), and descended back to our car at the Castle Trailhead (Airline Cut-off, Chemin des Dames, King Ravine Trail, Lowes' Path, Presidential Rail Trail). Clouds clung to the summits above ~5500' early in the day, but by the time we ascended Adams those had mostly dissipated, providing us with excellent views for the rest of the day!

I highly recommend the Castle trail for those that like a few scrambles. Descending Chemin des Dames was not bad at all in dry conditions - very steep, but there are so many rocks and trees to hold on to that it actually went pretty quickly and was not as taxing on the joints. Mossy Fall was very pleasant. The lower portion of King's Ravine Trail and Lowes' Path were more run-able than I expected.

The small "snowfield" on the Gulfside remains in Edmands' Col, but definitely does not make any spikes/snowshoes worthwhile. There was no other snow/ice on our route, though you can see it lingering in some of the gullies in the Northern Presidentials. The section of King's Ravine we took was clear of snow/ice... looked like the King's Ravine trail up the headwall was clear, but a gully to the right (not sure if it's the Great Gully Trail) still has a good bit of snow/ice.  
Name: Nathan S. 
E-Mail: uncle huck @ gmail 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2019-06-18 
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.

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