Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Carter Dome, South Carter, Middle Carter, NH
Trails: Nineteen Mile Brook Trail, Carter Moriah Trail, Carter Dome Trail, North Carter Trail, Imp Trail, Camp Dodge Cutoff, bushwhack
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Friday, November 25, 2016
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: There were a few cars at the 19 Mile lot when we arrived with less than an inch of new snow; a couple vehicles more when we left with no traction issues. Great Gulf had an inch of snow on the access drive in the morning but it looked to be gone when we left. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Ice - Blue, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Snow - Wet/Sticky 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Light Traction 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Bridged 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: All signs in place and no significant blowdowns. North Carter is kind of a mess right now, it is narrow/brushy in places with snow on the branches, it has stretches of running water over broken rock, and there is quite a bit of solid ice where there isn't water. Imp below it has much less ice but lots of roots and boulders, some with snow making them slippery (and if it freezes many more will have black ice) until its lower sections when it becomes a decent trail. The Dodge Cutoff was the best of the bunch. The whack was okay as long as it was an old road and then some of the powerline, but on hitting some snowy fir and blowdown in the power line we headed into the woods, and today found a lot of blowdown and wet small trees.  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: Pepper had fun, although he didn't like the whack. The 2" or so of new snow up high was sticky so going up Carter Moriah from the notch caused a lot of snowballing on his legs. I had treated his paw bottoms with Musher's Wax so he had no icing issues with temps around freezing. When we stopped he ate the snowballs, but I also knocked off or crushed the bigger ones. As expected on the descent they were gone. I put his softshell on from the start and that kept him dry despite the afternoon light rain. 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: Found a water bottle in a blue OR insulated container on the Imp trail. I emptied the water, carried it down and left it at the southern Imp trailhead sign. 
Comments: We did this loop hike counter clockwise figuring it was better going up the steeper Carter Moriah from the notch than down, but given the ice/water/snowy branches of North Carter and Imps rooty & rocky snow/water, a clockwise loop would have been easier and faster, as would an out and back to the Carters then down Carter Dome to 19 Mile. There was perhaps a half an inch of new snow on 19 Mile Brook at its beginning, and only a couple of inches on Carter Dome, so I barebooted until going down Carter Dome I hit an ice bulge and went down. I put on my rock spikes and used for the short ice section that remained before Zeta, and then kept them on until part way down Imp. Spikes were really only essential going down North Carter, which had extensive ice in the trail for many stretches. But they were broken up by flowing water over rocks, which could do some damage to spikes. If you don't have "rock spikes" to start, you may when you are done, but they are a good thing to have for trail conditions like those. No views from the summits today, like yesterday, but the rime & snow trees on the peaks both days was special although yesterday's light was better. There were a few wind gusts but for the most part wind was not a factor at all. Light rain fell starting mid pm, but it seems like we hiked in light rain 3 out of 4 hikes this October and November so it was inconsequential. We only saw a handful of people and 1 dog, all around Zeta Pass and South Carter. Having an oddball day off from work is always nice. If temps freeze overnight some rocks on the lower trail sections especially may become slippery, but the snow up higher might be a nice crust for spikes, at least for the first ones up and across. The gates for Gale River and Haystack roads were open in the morning, and I assume so now; I just couldn't see them on the drive home. Thanks Pepper. The day wasn't great in itself, but a hike with my pal is always great.  
Name: Pepper and Me 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2016-11-25 
Link: https:// 
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.

Copyright 2009-2019, All Rights Reserved