|Hiking Trail Conditions Report|
||Mt. Lethe, Middle Carter, South Carter, Carter Dome, NH|
||NH 16, Camp Dodge Cutoff, Imp Trail, North Carter Trail, Carter-Moriah Trail, Carter Dome Trail, Nineteen Mile Brook Trail|
|Date of Hike:
||Thursday, May 12, 2022|
|Parking/Access Road Notes:
||Parked at 19 Mile Brook trailhead lot off NH 16. This large lot is dirt surfaced, kiosk, no privy. Also an AMC shuttle stop. Overflow roadside parking available. |
||Dry Trail, Ice - Blue, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable, Snow/Ice - Monorail (Unstable), Snow - Spring Snow, Snow/Ice - Postholes |
||Light Traction |
|Water Crossing Notes:
||All crossed with rocks or human made bridges. |
|Trail Maintenance Notes:
||Thank you, thank you, to the person(s) who worked hard at removing the new blow downs on North Carter Trail. |
||Too much ice today on Carter Dome Trail, I think. Otherwise, water points open and flowing. |
||Oh yes. Black flies all around in the lower elevations. |
|Lost and Found:
Roadwalk on NH 16 > Camp Dodge Rd > logging road > Imp trail (South) > North Carter Trail > Carter-Moriah trail > Carter Dome Trail to Carter Dome summit then > Carter Dome Trail > 19 Mile Brook Trail.
Camp Dodge rd: gate open, staff present. Dry dirt road.
Imp Trail: there is a small wooden arrow affixed to a tree at the logging rd junction. This trail is not blazed, simple to follow footbed. No snow and very small, very avoidable pieces of ice on trail. No snow in the woods either. Water flowing on trail where it always is. Able to keep boots dry just fine.
North Carter trail: not blazed, simple to follow footbed. No snow or ice until 3400 feet. Spikes went on here, even though the ice was not continuous. Spikes just made things faster. There were patches of open trial throughout. Snow in the woods didn’t start until 3900 feet, and it was shallow. Some running water on trail near the junction with Carter-Moriah.
Carter-Moriah: this is the AT and is blazed in standard white blazes. Trail corridor simple to discern. As CaptChris put it, “deteriorating monorail made for an interesting day.” You said it, dude. So there is monorail, kind of. I tried the snowshoes but found I could not balance on the rapidly slimming and meandering spine of the monorail. Plus, all exposed ledges are completely snow free which would tear up my snowshoes as the open ledges occur with surprising frequency. So, I put back on my rock spikes and did just fine. Except for the postholes. There is just no way to not posthole with rapidly melting snow. But, it’s May. Who wants snow anyway?!? :) Note that the trail negotiation took an inordinate amount of time. Small sections of softening ice, mostly after South Carter summit. Rock spikes held well.
Carter Dome trail:
From the junction with Carter-Moriah at Zeta Pass until the junction again with Carter-Moriah as it comes off Mt Hight (on way to Carter Dome summit): nicely blazed in blue, then blazed in white again as it heads for the summit of Carter Dome. Prepare to deal with ice. Note that in just the short time I was on this trail the initially more solid ice sections morphed into a soft, slushy surface on top of thick ice pack. This trail is predominantly ice. I still had to deal with infernal sidehilling and trying to get up on top of what monorail was left. Rock spikes still held just fine both ascending and descending. I never felt nervous enough to break out the crampons. This portion of trail is 4200 to 4800 feet with rapidly melting snow in the woods. The last 0.4 miles to the summit was a sufferfest of slim monorail balancing and falling off into a mix of shallow and/or deep snow (deepest was 2.5 feet). Argh. This part took forever. Snowshoes will not help, there is just not enough to walk on. The actual summit of Carter Dome is snow free.
From Carter-Moriah trail at Zeta Pass to junction with 19 Mile Brook trial: this trail is blazed in updated blue blazes. Footbed simple to follow. Ice for about 300 feet then DRY TRAIL. Suck it, snow!! No snow in woods from 4000 feet and below. Oh my gosh I was rocking the summer temps and trail conditions. Water points open and flowing nicely.
19 Mile Brook Trail: well blazed in blue. Dry trail. Water in brook running higher making for awesome cascades along the way. Ran into the only other human I saw all day.
So, wear whatever you want. I don’t recommend bringing snowshoes. They are awesome but, in my opinion, not needed on these trails.
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.