Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks Mt. Hale, NH
Trails: Zealand Road, Hale Brook Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Sunday, January 12, 2020
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Snow had melted on the side of the road, but I parked at the Ammonoosuc Lower Falls trailhead on Rt 302 and walked the 0.2 miles to the gated road. 80% of Zealand Road was black ice covered in water and treacherously slippery without traction devices. But with my spikes, it was a quick 2.8-3 mile walk each way between the parking lot and Hale Brook trailhead. Look out for the pile of human shit on Zealand Road; I just avoided stepping in it! 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Ice - Black, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Unstable), Snow - Spring Snow, Snow/Ice - Postholes 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Snowshoes, Light Traction 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: As to be expected, the water was running very high today. Every stream was running hard, and the crossing of Hale Brook was really intimidating, with icy cold water roaring through, up to 3 feet deep. I did some acrobatics using my poles, a partially submerged log, and my microspikes to get across the brook, and I was very glad of my knee high waterproof socks because it soaked my boots in both directions. A few smaller stream crossings uphill from the brook had little snow bridges on my way up but the 4 people I met on the way down had tromping through without snowshoes, bringing all of them down.  
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: 3 blowdowns that weren't too much trouble to climb over or go around 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: So many things found... I packed out an empty Poland Springs water bottle, purple bandana, half-eaten beef jerky wrapper, and disposable hand warmer. There was also a used feminine napkin on the side of the trail, but I didn't have nitrile gloves or a sealable trash bag so I left it where it was.  
Comments: Lower down, the trail was solid ice, which made for fast walking. After Hale Brook, the snow quickly got deeper. At 2800', the snow monorail became unstable and up to hip deep (I'm 5'5" for context). I post-holed up to my thighs a few times, so I threw on snowshoes. That kept me on top of the snow crust, and allowed me to cross a small snow bridge across a stream without breaking through. I suspect that after the freeze tonight, none of these conditions should effect others (except the other 4 people's prolific post-holing).  
Name: Timex 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2020-01-12 
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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