Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Orange Mountain, Rimrock, Mt. Cardigan (South Peak), Mt. Cardigan, NH
Trails: Manning Trail, Holt Trail, Vistamont Trail, Skyland Trail, South Ridge Trail, Clark Trail, Holt-Clark Cutoff
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Shem Valley Road has not yet been graded for the season -- it's a bit rough in spots, with an occasional pothole. Plenty of parking today at the AMC Cardigan Lodge. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Mud - Significant, Leaves - Significant/Slippery 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Not an issue, but nice to see some great flow today, especially the cascades at Elizabeth Holt Falls. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Trails are generally in good shape -- see below for details. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Bugs: Yes -- black flies are officially out in force. Breeze kept them at bay for the most part, except for some of the slower-moving steeps where there was no breeze. 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: Wow -- the wet, rainy spring has really caused wildflowers to pop, everywhere: nice bunches of trout lilies along the Vistamont Trail, in particular. Everything is nice and green/greening up. Can't remember stuff looking this lush for a few years.

A quick hike today -- saw just a few people, and that was on Cardigan summit or near the lodge. On the trails, though, no one.

TRAIL NOTES: again, in general, trails are in good shape. All had some recent light deadfall; we cleaned this as we went.

Holt Trail up to Holt-Clark Cutoff, and Clark Trail below PJ Ledge -- drains are clogged with leaves in a number of places and water is backing up onto the trail, creating some muddier-than-normal sections. We boot-cleaned a few here and there, but they could stand additional cleaning. A few on the Clark Trail below PJ Ledge could use some digging out, as they've silted up and water is sitting in the trail and not draining.

Also on Holt Trail, as it ascends from the Croo Bridge, over rock stairs -- one of the lower steps on a stair section is fast becoming undermined; may need some stabilization work soon.

Vistamont Trail will need some light brushing later on this season. There are a few small blowdowns (easily walked under/over) that will require nothing more than a bow saw to remove. Also about 0.2 miles east of Orange Mountain is a short trenched section that seems to be eroding more quickly than we remember last fall -- might need some attention in a year or so.

Skyland Trail is in good shape -- one duck-under bow-saw-able blowdown about 0.2 miles south of where the trail begins to climb to Rimrock (if we recall correctly). Looks like some recent hobblebush brushing has taken place.  
Name: Pancks and Tesco Heaney  
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2017-05-17 
Link: http:// 
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