Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Sugarloaf Mountain, Spaulding Mountain, ME
Trails: Appalachian Trail, Sugarloaf Side Trail, Spaulding Side Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Thursday, July 22, 2021
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: See Waumbek's excellent description of the road from 7/12/21. The road looks quite sketchy right by the turn from Route 27, but it's really not too bad. There are a couple of small bridge crossings that seem a little unstable but if you drive slowly it should be fine. The gate was closed beyond the parking area and from there it's just a half mile road walk to the start of the trail. The trailhead has no sign; look for a couple of small cairns with a white AT blaze.  
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Mud - Significant 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: There is one major water crossing, about a quarter mile from Caribou Valley Road. There is a plank with shingles for traction to assist with the trickiest part of the crossing.  
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: A team of AmeriCorps Maine Conservation Corps workers were actively working on the lower portion of the trail the day we hiked, hauling boulders into place to create stairs on the trail. The lower half mile of the trail is in very good condition. Further up additional planks could be added to assist with muddy sections. On the section of the AT between the Sugarloaf Side Trail and Spaulding there were a few blowdowns, one of which took just a little maneuvering, but none was too difficult.  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Bugs: No bugs for some strange reason. 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: The trail was fairly busy with AT through hikers, section hikers, and day hikers. All seemed to be in a good mood as it was relatively dry (minus a short passing shower in the afternoon) after wetter weather the day before. The trail from Caribou Valley Road up to the intersection with Sugarloaf Side Trail starts steeply after the river crossing, first with some excellent trail work in the form of stone steps and then more steeply with a few scrambly sections. One scramble in particular takes a bit more thought but is very doable. Take care with wet rock and roots. The upper mile of this section of trail levels off and there are excellent views to the right of a cirque and the ridgeline on the other side. The trail intersection is wooded and the half mile jaunt up to Sugarloaf is steep but short. The summit was windy and the many towers a bit of a drag after the beautiful trail below. One woman on the summit had come up the ski trails from Sugarloaf lodge and reported it being very steep going. We retraced our steps to the junction and went on 2.1 miles to Spaulding. This section of trail rolls across a wooded ridgeline and is very pleasant. Watch out for the sign marking the spur up to Spaulding. It is 150 yards from the AT to the summit and then another few feet to the lookout. Gaia indicated there's a way to loop around and connect back with the AT but this looked overgrown/impassible and I didn't investigate further. The trip back down was uneventful.  
Name: Tart 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2021-07-24 
Link: http:// 
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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