|Hiking Trail Conditions Report|
||Mt. Success, NH|
||Success Trail, Mahoosuc Trail, herd path, Carlo Col Trail|
|Date of Hike:
||Saturday, July 4, 2020|
|Parking/Access Road Notes:
||Success Pond Rd is probably driveable by any car but I would not personally want to do it with something with only low clearance although I’ve certainly seen sedans on the road. The first mile or two are the toughest with large rocks popping out of the road and such but the entire road is rough and very bumpy. Take it slow and watch for other cars. The road is actually very wide but many cars are on the wrong side of it trying to avoid holes and such 🤪 Due to a washout I’d say it’s no longer possible to drive in the 0.4mi along the logging road on Mt Success Trail. Room for four cars to pull in at the trailhead and probably one on either side of it to parallel park. More than a half dozen cars there and you’ll have an issue. We were only the fourth car there yesterday just before 11:30am. It seems that even with it being 4th of July weekend and this peak being on the 52WAV list, it’s not too popular. |
||Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Mud - Significant |
|Water Crossing Notes:
||Just a couple trivial, small, crossings on Success Trail and Mahoosuc Trail. The only crossings of significance were on Carlo Col Trail. Definitely higher than when we were there three weeks ago but rock hoppable without much trouble but could be difficult in high water. The one about 0.8mi in the guidebook says could be difficult at high water also had some mossy rocks that could be very slippery after it rains. |
|Trail Maintenance Notes:
||Success Trail was regularly, but not all that frequently, in blue (connects to AT). The Mahoosuc Trail is blazed in white for the AT but we saw very, very little blaze on the sections we were on. Easy to follow since it’s well travelled below tree line but can be more difficult above treeline as there aren’t many, if any, cairns around Success (this really only applies to the south side of it, if coming from the plane crash or further south). Keep your eye out for bog bridges! I complained about the failing bog bridges when I did Success from the south a month ago... they didn’t seem QUITE as bad this time on the south side of Success but we only went to the herd path to the airplane crash; the worst of them may have been further south. The bog bridges on Success Trail and other sections of Mahoosuc Trail weren’t in as bad of shape but many could still be replaced. Carlo Col Trail is blazed in blue and generally pretty frequently. Not many blowdowns at all! I recall a couple stepovers on Carlo Col Trail but few to none on Success Trail and Mahoosuc Trail. Impressive! |
||None seen and I wouldn’t recommend it. Some of the scrambles on this section of Mahoosuc Trail will be too hard for dogs and any dog will need a boost on the very tough scramble on the Mahoosuc Trail to Success. Some parts between Success Trail and Carlo Col Trail I wouldn’t recommend for dogs either. Success Trail would be doable for most fit hiking dogs though. |
||They were out and I used bug spray from the start and reapplied a couple of times. That said, I didn’t find them that bad although some others seemed to. Black flies and mosquitos mostly. Also, there seemed to be a plethora of stinging insects along the road. One flew into the car while we were driving, we saw a couple others trying to get in, and many as we were getting ready at the trailhead. Maybe a nest/hive was disturbed? Gone by the evening when we returned though. |
|Lost and Found:
||A nice redline with a friend :) We went up the Success Trail —> Mahoosuc Trail to herd path to plane crash —> out-and-back along herd path —> Mahoosuc Trail back over Success all the way to Carlo Col Trail —> Carlo Col Trail —> road walk. |
The road walk I believe was 2.4mi. It seemed easier walking on a gravel road than pavement though and was surprisingly one of the easier road walks I think I’ve done. I usually like to ascend the more gradual way but Success Trail has some very wet ledges (pretty much always but particularly after a rain) so I’d probably recommend ascending this way rather than descending although the vast majority of people doing Success do an out-and-back on it. The ledges were very wet and slick yesterday on it as they also were at many points on Mahoosuc Trail so watch your footing! The section of Mahoosuc Trail between Success and Carlo Col Trail definitely has some difficult sections with scrambles. There is one very tough scramble between Success and Success Trail. Thought about doing this one with my parents but glad I didn’t...definitely not good for people with bad knees. Could hurt yourself easily too. There are also some small but very steep ledges to scramble up below treeline in this section but there are bypasses around. The first section between Success Trail and Carlo Col was actually pretty easy but there are some tougher sections closer to Carlo Col. Some are just steep, wet ledges to negotiate but there are also two very bouldery sections a little bit like Mahoosuc Notch: one right before Carlo Col and another probably a half mile to a mile before it.
No standing/running water, but lots of very wet/slick ledge and some spots of significant mud too. This was my second time to visit the plane crash site. There is no markings at the start of it and it starts above tree line so although you can certainly spot the herd path it would also be very easy to walk by it. It is shown well on Gaia and I believe it is on All Trails as well. There is one “main” path but a few branching routes, mostly above treeline. Once below tree line there are some very tight spots you have to push through although you shouldn’t lose the tread way. MAKE SURE NOT TO FOLLOW THE YELLOW BLAZES BACK!! The herd path eventually turns right at some yellow blazes which mark the AT corridor NOT THE HERD PATH. The herd path follows them from that point to the plane crash but make sure to turn left to head back up on your way back; do not continue along the yellow blazes.
Only met one family doing an out-and-back to Success. They did not have success finding the herd path ;) One person section hiking the AT on the summit and a mother and son traversing the Mahoosucs together; great to chat with them! Met a thru hiker at Carlo Col tentsite while I was trying to refill my water. There is water there but not strong enough flow to fill a Sawyer filter very well. Good luck on your thru hike Grizzly Gramps! Met one other person heading up around 6:45pm to camp out.
||Liam Cooney |
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.