Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Whiteface (attempt), NH
Trails: Dicey's Mill Trail, Tom Wiggin Trail, Blueberry Ledge Trail, Blueberry Ledge Cutoff
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Sunday, August 22, 2021
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Only four cars in Ferncroft when I arrived, five when I got back. Lots of signs telling people where they can and can't park. The dirt Ferncroft Road has been improved since I was last there - all the potholes on the dirt section are now gone. Much better now. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Mud - Minor/Avoidable 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Only crossing of consequence was the one at the base of Tom Wiggin Trail. There were enough exposed (or almost-exposed) rocks, but they were wet, so caution had to be exercised. I was able to rock-hop without getting my feet wet. Considering the rain that's coming in, that may not be the case anymore for a few days. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: All signs were in place, and no major drainage issues (though a couple of areas at the very bottom and near the top of Tom Wiggin were wet, but they seemed to be the exception). A few blowdowns in the Wilderness area, but none were an impediment to travel. There's a massive widowmaker on Blueberry Ledge Cutoff just before entering the Wilderness - currently it's high enough over the trail to walk under without ducking, but it could crash down at any time. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: Hardy dogs should be fine on the steep, gravelly areas of Tom Wiggin. All other trails can be done by any dog. 
Bugs: Very few. 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: Nothing. 
Comments: My previous hiking plans fell through, so I decided to do a shorter hike to both beat the rain and redline two new trails. Dicey's Mill Trail was its normal gradual self - a couple of small muddy areas but no real issues. Tom Wiggin was the trail I was most apprehensive about, since the signs at either end say that it's "Not Recommended - Steep and Loose". While it certainly was steep and gravelly in places, it wasn't terrible - it was less gravelly than Cave Mountain Path in Bartlett and less steep than the New Path on South Doublehead in Jackson. There were places where I had to watch my footing and grab roots, but if you're careful about your footing and take enough breaks, you should be fine. There are a couple of minor ledges, but they're not too difficult to get past. The grade moderates further up, but it continues at this moderate grade for longer than I expected before eventually reaching the top of the ridge and Blueberry Ledge Trail.

Blueberry Ledge Staircase was a nice descent - the rocks are flat and so still useful even when wet. Blueberry Ledge Cutoff was also a relatively nice descent - it's moderate and fairly rough in the upper part, but once I reached a sharp right turn (marked by two arrows on trees), to begin the switchback, it became much more gradual and the footing improved. The trail remained mostly flat or gradual for the rest of the hike.

The approaching hurricane must have scared people away - I didn't see a single other hiker on the trails, and saw one person in the parking lot. Temps were mild but it was still quite humid - that made the climb tougher, but the higher elevations got more wind which cooled me down more. It was mostly cloudy all day, but the rain didn't begin until I was driving home.  
Name: GN 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2021-08-22 
Link: http:// 
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