Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks North Twin Mountain, South Twin Mountain, Galehead Mountain, NH
Trails: Snowmobile trail, Haystack Road, North Twin Trail, North Twin Spur, Twinway, Frost Trail, Garfield Ridge Trail, Gale River Trail, Gale River Road, Beaver Brook XC trails
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Sunday, May 2, 2021
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Spotted a car at Beaver Brook. Parked second car at Seven Dwarves Inn (paid $10 in envelope on windshield). Only car in their lot at 8:30 start and 5:30 end. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Snow - Packed Powder/Loose Granular, Wet/Slippery Rock, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Snow/Ice - Frozen Granular, Snow - Drifts, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Stable), Snow - Wet/Sticky, Mud - Significant, Snow - Spring Snow, Slush 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment: Snowshoes, Light Traction 
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Avoided the first 2 major water crossings on the North Twin trail by taking the herd path. Could not find an easy alternate crossing location for the third crossing. Used waders and crossed about 100 yds above crossing. Water was high (up to thigh) and strong, could really feel current with each step. Smaller crossings were high but mostly rock hopable. On several water ran over foot of boots. So much water on ascent on North Twin trail it was difficult to separate water crossings from trail. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Several blow downs on North Twin and Gale head trails. All easy to step over. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: Water crossings (specifically the third on North Twin) too high for a dogs to pass. Left my experienced doggie at home. Additionally, the potential for soft snow clinging and balling of snow to fur could make travel difficult for many pups. 
Bugs: Heard one fly by at lower elevation 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: N/A 
Comments: Was a great day to be out. Winds were much lower than expected at summits, but still windy. Cloudy, but good distant visibility. We left snowshoes in the car based on reports form Galehead/Garfield the previous day, and were expecting 2-3 inches of new snow, but got much more.

Trails started dry. Before the third water crossing on North Twin there was lots of standing and running water, hence lots of mud that was mostly avoidable, and a few step over crossings. See notes above regarding getting across the third crossing.

After crossing, the trail was covered in running water. Basically, walking in a running stream for about the next half mile before transitioning into a snow covered trail. At lower elevations the trail had 1-2 inches of new snow, which quickly transitioned to around 6 inches of slippery packed snow. My companion switched to Hillsounds at the start of the greatest incline climb (about 1 mile from water crossing). I barebooted almost to the lookout prior to the summit. Snow balls became an issue with spikes, however without them slipping was a little greater. We were breaking trail up to the North Twin Summit. Maybe snowshoes could have made travel easier, however the snow balling would have been a major issue and the extra weight makes each step a challenge when ascending.

Someone had traveled the trail from North to South Twin prior to us, however, the trail was not broken out. Conditions were similar to our ascent: lots of snow balling in spikes, and drifts up to a foot.

Descent from South Twin was slow going, due to the lose snow. I stayed in Hillsounds, but my companion barebooted. Both worked since trail was more broken out, but lose.

The remainder of the trails were packed, and spikes worked great until the lack of snow transitioned back to the running water and intermittent mud. By this point our boots were soaked and feet were wet, but the weather was warm and it was not a problem. All water crossing were rock hopable.

We enjoyed spotting many wildflowers starting to bloom on the descent at lower elevations. Including: purple trilliums, yellow round leafed violets, yellow dog tooth lilies, Caroline Spring Beauties, and wood anemone.  
Name: CookiesOnTop 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2021-05-03 
Link: http:// 
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