Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Galehead Mountain, South Twin Mountain, North Twin Mountain, NH
Trails: Gale River Trail, Garfield Ridge Trail, Frost Trail, Twinway, North Twin Spur, North Twin Trail, Haystack Road, bushwhack, Beaver Brook XC ski trails, Gale River Road
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Thursday, May 11, 2023
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Lot mostly empty 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Stable), Snow/Ice - Monorail (Unstable), Snow/Ice - Small Patches 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Light Traction 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Crossing on Gale River Trail is a dry rock hop, top crossing on North Twin Trail is a a shin deep wade 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Gale River Trail could use a reblazing on the lower section below the relocation, as I didn't see a single blaze for the first 1.5 miles. Once the blowdown patch on North Twin melts out theres prob some more cleanup work to be done in there 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: N/A 
Bugs: Still slow and sluggish, but starting to get a little swarmy at low elevations 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: N/A 
Comments: One of my more convoluted loops I've done that only involved grid peaks and no redlining trails. Galehead Hut is open so I spent a full hour basking in the sun on the porch, strongly recommend this to improve spring hike quality. Mostly dry trail up Gale River Trail with patchy monorail starting at 3100', becoming consistent at the jct w/Garfield Ridge Trail. The section from here up to the hut has monorail collapsing into the stream, yay my favorite. Similar on Galehead, except quite a few areas snowfree in the various blowdown sections and open areas.

I would strongly recommend not visiting the twins without high tolerances and desire for suffering. Monorail from the hut up to South Twin is about 70% stable, 20% mushy/slushy/unstable in the open areas, mostly in the high shrub nearing the summit and 10% icy stable monorail. Rough, but its a slow mile so not much slower than usual, would strongly recommend not going down this side without bringing beefier traction devices than spikes. North Twin Spur is challenging attempting to follow the blazes and stay on the semi stable, narrow monorail and not sucked out into the middle of the open woods way off trail. High shrub section involves many face level branches. Blowdown patch and climbing up towards North Twin was collapsing in the open and semi stable in the woods.

North Twin trail side is beyond atrociously disgusting, and yet its still a more attractive option than going back over and down South Twin to the Hut. Wicked steep, and brutally narrow semi stable monorail with many tedious sidehill sections. Was extremely slimy with a slushy top layer leading to much sliding off and attempts to avoid postholing to my death. A few hip deep spots lurking out there to eat bodies so be careful. Crossing of the Little River was a mid shin wade with moderate flow rates, manageable but wet shoes are much more appetizing on the descent. Roadwalked Haystack Road to the jct w/ FR25, the snowmobile corridor and extension of Gale River Road North, then a short bushwhack to the Beaver Brook XC trails which I was on for a few miles before a short jaunt on Gale River Road back to the car.  
Name: Heat Lightning 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2023-05-11 
Link: https:// 
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