Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Owl's Head, NH
Trails: Lincoln Woods Trail, Black Pond Trail, bushwhack, Lincoln Brook Trail, bushwhack, Owl's Head Path
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Thursday, March 17, 2022
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Lincoln Woods is in great shape. Sun has melted everything nicely. Please sign the register, so the rangers know who's around and who's come off the mountain.  
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Ice - Blue, Ice - Breakable Crust, Snow - Wet/Sticky, Snow - Spring Snow, Snow/Ice - Postholes 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Snowshoes 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Be careful. I can't stress this enough. The crossings, such as they are if you're "cutting the corners" by doing the bushwhacks, are still marginal at this point. I was surprised that one of the crossings I'd made on the way up (in the morning) were gone on the way down (that afternoon --- just hours later.) As long as the weather features spring-like temps, I'd regard the trail as "a work in progress." Consider that you should turn around the first moment you realize a water crossing might be vastly different on the return. (Have a lot of suspicion that this might be the case pretty much anywhere.) There's a lot of water being shed at the moment, and any brook can become a problem you don't want to deal with, some of them quite deadly. There's a lot of liquid water coming off the mountain right now, and ice bridges aren't a given, by any stretch of the imagination. Hike safely. The mountains will be there when you return.  
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Overall, the solid parts of the trail are in quite nice shape. There's one blow down of note, but even that's been managed by people doing the right thing. On the bushwhacks, things are actually pretty amazing.  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Bugs: A few snowflies, but that's all.  
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: It's springtime conditions, for real. And winter is (as I write this) still officially the season. Actually, make that at least mid-springtime. Wow, it was warm and things were melting rapidly. I was happily in shirt sleeves, but the warm temps kept me guessing at the water crossings.

The "monorail," such that it is, is still pretty solid, and in a month or so, when it's truly a monorail, should be pretty epic. No-one that I noticed has trashed things by bare-booting or that kind of thing. Please be kind and wear snowshoes.

Overall... I wore spikes to Black Pond Trail, where things were nice starting out, but you could post hole if you weren't paying attention pretty easily. On the bushwhacks and beyond? Yep, snowshoes. The crust was pretty good overall, but you'd posthole even in snowshoes, and that happened "occasionally" but enough to be annoying. I can't imagine what wearing spikes would have done. Madness.

On Brutus? Snowshoes won the day, hands down. Lincoln Woods? Yep, it's very much the everyman's trail. Wear whatever you'd like. XC skis, spikes, whatever. Just make time.

The Brutus Bushwhack gets a bit weird when you need to make that left turn about midway up. Beyond that, there's some solid blue ice, which makes it much more hinky than you'd prefer on the way down. (It's no fun on the way up, either.)This will gobble up time on your return, so budget for this when you plan your trip. On the summit, things are quite tame. (For reference, I took about 90 minutes to climb up the actual mountain, and about an hour to come back down.)

Pictures and a more complete write up are on my blog as always. Share and enjoy. Please subscribe.  
Name: Protean Wanderer 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2022-03-19 
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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