Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks The Bulge, Mt. Cabot, Terrace Mountain, North Weeks, Middle Weeks, South Weeks, Mt. Waumbek, Mt. Starr King, NH
Trails: Kilkenny Ridge Trail, Starr King Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Saturday, September 17, 2022
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Plenty of parking at South Pond Recreation Area at 4:30 AM! 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Several minor crossings on the Kilkenny Ridge Trail north of Rogers Ledge- easy rock hops. Couple of ponds and streams between Rogers Ledge and Unknown Pond required more creative rock hopping/ stepping on the right wood debris to avoid taking a plunge. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Sections of the trail north of Rogers Kedge are somewhat grown in by encroaching underbrush. For about 3 miles between Middle Weeks and Waumbek, the plant encroachment bordered on ridiculous. The footway was visible with concentration, but I was plowing through waist- high growth the entire way. Occasionally, this fun activity was interrupted by navigating blowdowns. Blazing was essentially non- existent here as well- glad I didn't need to navigate it by headlamp! Other sections of the Kilkenny Ridge Trail were blazed quite well- including the climb over Terrace and North Terrace Mountain. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes:  
Bugs: Nothing biting- though I kept moving at a reasonable clip! 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: I participated in the 50- mile version of the Kilkenny Ridge Race yesterday- kudos to the race organizers for an outstanding event, and to all of the volunteers and day hikers who enthusiastically cheered us on even when we probably looked terrible. The course started on the South Pond beach, just north of the Kilkenny Ridge Trail terminus, traversed the length of the Kilkenny Ridge Trail and the Starr King Trail, continued 0.4 miles on roads to the Jefferson Inn, and then did it again in reverse! The Kilkenny Ridge Trail is definitely most "civilized" between the Unknown Pond Trail and the Bunnell Notch Trail, where it sees regular traffic toward Mt. Cabot. There are long sections of uneven rocks/roots and fairly technical footing, but fortunately the rocks were dry, and I could safely push the pace if I needed to. Though the course had 15,350' of elevation gain over its 49.4 miles, most of the climbing was moderate rather than obnoxious- on a per-mile basis, I thought this route was notably easier than a Pemi Loop (or AMC Hut Traverse!). The stretch between Middle Weeks and Waumbek would have been well-served by a machete. A winter Kilkenny Ridge Traverse, while staying on route, must be nearly impossible. As for the race, I hiked strongly, ran some of the downhills in the 2nd half, and caught a long second wind 35 miles in- leading to a much better than expected 15:08 finish! More route details to follow on Unnecessary Climb.  
Name: Jason 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2022-09-18 
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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