|Hiking Trail Conditions Report|
||Owl’s Head, NH|
||Lincoln Woods Trail, Black Pond Trail, bushwhacks, Lincoln Brook Trail, Owl's Head Path|
|Date of Hike:
||Saturday, April 30, 2022|
|Parking/Access Road Notes:
||Parked at Lincoln Woods Trailhead. This large lot is paved and requires a fee ($5) or pass. Porta potties up, bathrooms undergoing renovation. There is roadside parking available for overflow. |
||Dry Trail, Snow - Trace/Minimal Depth, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow - Spring Snow, Slush |
||Light Traction |
|Water Crossing Notes:
||The only major water crossings on these trails are two on Lincoln Brook Trail after the Black Pond bushwhack. These were negotiated with exposed, or very slightly submerged rocks.
Of note, I met one couple who travelled down Lincoln Brook from Franconia Brook. There are two very large water crossings on that trail if you elect not to take the bushwhack. They said it took them 45 minutes to cross the second brook. They said water was high, fast moving with limited rock hops available. |
|Trail Maintenance Notes:
||Great trails for dogs. All dogs were leashed on Lincoln Woods (dunno if this is required or not). |
|Lost and Found:
Lincoln Woods Trail > Black Pond trail > Black Pond bushwhack > Lincoln Brook Trail > Brutus bushwhack > back the way I came.
Lincoln Woods: not blazed. Flat, wide and fast. Popular trail. Not so many people out, though. No snow. Some mud where it always is.
Black Pond trail: well blazed in yellow. Simple to follow footpath. Completely snow free. A bit muddy, naturally. Pond ice free as well.
Black Pond bushwhack: look, it’s a personal habit to get a bearing from my map and set off with my compass. But I kinda wished I had just stuck with the Gaia GPS at first. That faint woods path on the right just after the boggy section on the pond’s edge was the start of the more established bushwhack. Gaia was trying to tell me that… Whatever, my bearing did eventually dump me right on the near herd path of the Black Pond bushwhack. Once on the herd path, I was able to follow with moderate ease. I frequently checked my compass to make sure… There was a small amount of snow in the AM, none on my return, making the path much more discernible. Note that a bushwhack is exactly that, I encourage future adventurers to use GPS as a backup to regular navigational skills.
Lincoln Brook Trail: not blazed. Simple to follow footbed. Shallow snow that ever so slightly increased with the modest elevation gain of this trail. Some pockets of deeper snow where the sun doesn’t penetrate the trees. The majority of this was gone by my return in the afternoon. I used bare boots. Many people in spikes with the “Whites Special Snowball” recipe firmly attached to their heels and toes- note this special is only available in spring. Get it now before it’s gone!! :)
Brutus bushwhack: awesome job to the person who laid a track after the last snowfall! Good work! I was able to follow these prints without issue. Very shallow snow (1 inch or less) from the start to the top of the super steep climb. Deeper (1-2 inches) snow from the top of the climb, past the slide bushwhack junction, to the ridge line. There were also several sections of thick ice under the snow along this part. Much more snow (several inches, few ice portions) along the short ridge. This ALL changed from the time I summited (~11:30am) until I returned to the start of the bushwhack (~12:00). Snow was super sticky with ice softening nicely.
I dunno what to say about footwear. I used spikes for 10 feet before ripping them off in favor of bare boots. Essentially, I used bare boots from top to bottom. Yes, I back slid a lot. Yes, I postholed twice up on the ridge. Yes, I busted my rear end several times on the descent. As I told my awesome snowshoes attached to my pack and the several people I encountered, I don’t care! I’m on strike from winter. I’m done with spikes and snowshoes until next winter. One young lady, thankfully, agreed with me.
Awesome people taking advantage of a gorgeous day to get to a remote Whites Peak. Especially stoked to meet a fella from Louisiana. Lovely to have met ya’ll.
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.