Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Cabot, NH
Trails: York Pond Trail, Bunnell Notch Trail, Kilkenny Ridge Trail, bushwhack
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Friday, September 3, 2021
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: I think I started by 8am and was surprised to see that the things had already WAY overflowed. The spots along the road had pretty much all been taken too. I turned around and parked in the Unknown Pond lot which of course was almost completely empty. It would be nice if this trailhead had more than 4 spots though. They seem to have the room. The road in is dirt in the latter portion but fine for any car.  
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Mud - Significant 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: All were rock hopable at the time.  
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: No blowdowns I recall but this was 3 weeks ago. Bunnell Notch Trail has the rare, faded yellow blaze. Kilkenny Ridge Trail has the occasional yellow blaze many of which are newer. The trails can be a little overgrown at times (namely the short section of York Pond Trail you’re on down low - your pant legs will get drenched if doing it after it rained or from morning dew) and a bit less obvious than other popular trails to 4000 footers but still very easy to follow if you’re experienced.  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: These trails would be fine for any hiking dog I imagine but they talus field may be treacherous for them.  
Bugs: None 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: None 
Comments: I think this was my 15th 4000 footer last month that counted toward the 26 I needed last month for my September grid. I’m obviously posting this report obscenely late but the route may be of interest to people so here we go.

I ascended the normal route up to Cabot. I dropped my pack at the cabin, did the quick OAB to the summit (make sure you bag the true summit, a very short herd path leads ahead/left to the true summit which is obviously higher than where the sign is. It’s not hard to notice/find. When I got back to the cabin and my pack, I headed toward the privy and started whacking southeast toward the south-facing talus field on Cabot. I could see what I was aiming for on Cabot because on my free version of Gaia, it shows many slides/talus fields as white. Anyhow, I made it to the talus field through open woods with a very small patch of thickness immediately before reaching the field. I popped out onto it at 3950ft. This was the top of the eastern end. I’d heard the field was ginormous so was surprised when I could see the bottom of it quite close by. It is very wide but not tall at all though I think it gets a bit wider as you love west which I did a bit. As I moved southwest down it I came to a man-made little shelter out of the rock to shelter from the weather. It was quite tall on one side. Impressive! After checking that out I made my way due south down the field. It felt like the loosest slide I’ve been on and was a bit unnerved going down it as even some of the larger rocks/boulders moved. I found ascending Whitewall less scary than this honestly. So exercise some caution. I made it way to the base of the slide at about 3800ft. Note than one can also approach this slide by contouring from the 3800ft contour on Kilkenny Ridge Trail. Rather than do the short whack back to trail though, I opted to whack down to Bunnell Notch Trail hoping to hit one of the nice birch glades along the way.

I took a bearing and started off the slide southeast into the woods. It was very steep and relatively thick at first. I eventually came to another very small, partially open slide which I carefully made my way down. I think this was at 3600ft. I believe it was shortly after this that the woods opened up and the grade eased. I also began heading more south than east at this point. This led me to *not* run into the birch glades. Had I continued heading southeast, favoring East a little more, I should have. But instead I hit ferns, then some hobblebrush as I continued down toward Bunnell Notch Trail which I hit at 2800ft. Of course as I continued heading east on Bunnell Notch Trail I noted where the birch forests were that I should have come out. Oh well, should have paid more attention on my way up.  
Name: Liam Cooney 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2021-10-03 
Link: http:// 
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