Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks South Kinsman, North Kinsman, Mt. Flume, Mt. Liberty, Little Haystack Mountain, Mt. Lincoln, Mt. Truman, Mt. Lafayette, NH
Trails: Lonesome Lake Trail, Cascade Brook Trail, Fishin' Jimmy Trail, Kinsman Ridge Trail, Kinsman Pond Trail, Cascade Brook Trail, Whitehouse Trail, Liberty Spring Trail, Flume Slide Trail, Franconia Ridge Trail, Greenleaf Trail, Old Bridle Path
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Saturday, July 1, 2023
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Arrived early at the Falling Waters / Old Bridle Path parking, and there were plenty of spots. A few spaces were available when I returned around 4PM. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail, Wet Trail, Wet/Slippery Rock, Standing/Running Water on Trail, Mud - Minor/Avoidable 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: Given all the recent rain, the crossings were easier than expected. I had been particularly concerned about the major crossing on the Cascade Brook Trail, but when I saw a man with his young child in a kid carrier having made it across without incident, I was no longer worried. The Cascade Brook crossing (just above the Basin-Cascades Trail intersection) could be negotiated fairly easily on slightly submerged rocks. The crossing near the bottom of the Cascade Pond Trail was a moderate-difficulty rock hop- thanks to the hiker I saw for adeptly demonstrating the easiest route! A couple of the many brook crossings on the lower Flume Slide Trail required minor problem-solving, but it wasn't too difficult to keep feet dry. 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes: Trails generally in good shape- better than expected with the recent weather conditions. Probably 1/4 to 1/2 mile of the Kinsman Pond Trail is a glorified streambed, but this is a known phenomenon. A few step-overs on the Kinsman Pond Trail and Flume Slide Trail. Limited blazing on the Flume Slide- it's very easy to inadvertently exit the slide track early into the woods, which I may have done before eventually realizing my error. 
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: Wouldn't recommend them on the Flume Slide (though I saw one), and perhaps for traveling downhill on the Kinsman Pond Trail, due to relentlessly rugged, uneven, and slippery footing. The other trails would be fine. 
Bugs: Not an issue until late morning, when black flies and mosquitoes became mildly annoying. I then sprayed, which kept them away effectively. 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found:  
Comments: This was a diverse and challenging 24-mile tour of both sides of Franconia Notch, starting with the Kinsmans and then crossing under I-93 to traverse Franconia Ridge. Views would have been spectacular, but were significantly obscured by wildfire haze. It was a pleasantly warm but very humid day- may have underestimated my fluid needs, but got through it! I was ready to alter the route to avoid potentially hazardous brook crossings, but was pleasantly surprised that the Cascade Brook Trail crossing could be done fairly easily, on slightly submerged rocks. Of course there were areas of mud and a bit of standing water, most prominently on the Kinsman Pond Trail and Cascade Brook Trail, but this also was not as bad as expected. The Flume Slide had an abundance of wet and slippery slabs, but if you're comfortable with moderately difficult scrambling and areas of exposure, the ascent is secure. Be aware, the trail doesn't enter the woods until the very top of the slide track, at which point it makes an obvious left turn on a well-established footway. I did a bit of inadvertent bushwhacking about 3/4 of the way up the slide when I climbed up into the woods early. A young man who knew what he was doing had gone down the Flume Slide- I will plan to keep my career "Flume Slide descents" number at zero. As expected on a summer holiday weekend, there were MANY friendly hikers strewn across Franconia Ridge, and I probably passed more than 50 on Greenleaf / Old Bridle Path alone.

More details on this route to follow, under the "Endurance Hikes" section on Unnecessary Climb!  
Name: Jason 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2023-07-01 
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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