Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks The Horn, The Bulge, Mt. Cabot, NH
Trails: Unknown Pond Trail, Kilkenny Ridge Trail, Horn Spur, Bunnell Notch Trail, York Pond Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Wednesday, September 29, 2021
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Fantastic. Of note: I spoke with one of the Hatchery guys. They had some hooligans swing by during the height of COVID and vandalize the joint, so it's no longer a given that the gate will be left open in a sort of benign neglect. I lucked out in that the weather was crummy enough they felt it safe to do so. If you do get locked in, the caretakers live in the nearby houses, but I recommend checking in with them if at all possible, just so they know you're there.  
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Mud - Significant, Leaves - Significant/Slippery 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Mostly one-hop wonders over various drainages. The wider ones were 1-2 stepping stone wonders, easily managed. The stepping stones weren't particularly slimy, but be careful as this can change.  
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Overall, the trails were in good shape. There's a bit of puncheon that's rotted to near-insignificance, and heading up Cabot from The Bulge, the trail is basically dirt and scree for a stretch (could use some diverters, or some other erosion control.) A lot of mud in the flatter stretches, which encourages wayward hikers to widen the trail -- puncheon or bog boards would combat this. On a dry day, though, almost everything would be puppies and kittens end-to-end.  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Bugs: Benefit of a cool early autumn day is the profound lack of any kind of flying, biting insects! Woo-hoo!  
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: It was a cold, wet, utterly sodden day. With the fog, it was outright British. USFS is reporting about 50% of the leaves are turning; to me, it felt more in the range of 30%. Maybe closer to Nash Stream, or that a-way. Give it a couple weeks, and things will be dynamite, for sure. That said, the sugar maples were indeed on fire, and there was a smattering of yellows as well. So it's starting to look quite nice. Unknown Pond trail was wet, but quite navigable. I think the worst of the mud was on Kilkenny Ridge and heading back down Bunnell Notch. But apart from that, it was a nice hike. Of particular note, the cabin got a refresh, with a new coat of green paint, and a new cedar roof. Even the insides got cleaned up, so it's ready and waiting for a fresh batch of campers.  
Name: Protean Wanderer 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2021-09-30 
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.

Copyright 2009-2019, All Rights Reserved