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Trail Conditions

Trip Log


Middle Sugarloaf
Bethlehem, NH

Trailheads, measurements, times, distances, and maps are all approximate and relative to the hike(s) as shown below.
The Sugarloaf Trail
The Sugarloaf Trail

Route: Snowmobile trail, Zealand Road, Sugarloaf Trail

Snowmobile trail alongside US 302 from winter lot to Zealand Road entrance (gated) (0.2 mile) still had full coverage, though it looks like water is pooling on part of it (frozen this evening).

Zealand Road (1.0 mile) was plowed past the Sugarloaf Trail, but had about 2 inches of hardpack/ice on it. Barebootable for the ascent, but light traction a good idea for descent. I wore snowshoes and had no issues. One warm weather event could get a lot of it down to pavement.

Sugarloaf Trail was generally a firm snowshoe width footbed with a few minor areas of postholes. Evidence of use heading down the Trestle Trail, as well as to North Sugarloaf. Ladder just below Middle Sugarloaf is snow covered, so that steep little pitch could pose an issue to those without some sort of traction. I found snowshoes to be fine from the road to the summit, but light traction would have been fine as well. Snowshoes will be a good idea when temperatures climb, as there's a good 2-3 feet of snowpack.

Nice sunset, but a brisk breeze on the open summit. Still feels like March!

Hike Ratings
Getting To Trailhead: Difficult
Destination: Middle Sugarloaf
Length: Moderate
Steepness: Difficult
Navigation: Easy
Views: Excellent
Crowds: Minimal

Hike Stats
Date Hiked: Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Parking Elevation: 1,480'
Time to Trailhead: 00:16
Destination: Middle Sugarloaf
Time Elapsed: 00:27
Trailhead Elevation: 1,644'
Summit Elevation: 2,539'
Distance: 1.4 miles
Vertical Gain: 915'
Hike Time Elapsed: 01:42
Hike Vertical Gain: 1,159'

Sugarloaf Trail trailhead
Sugarloaf Trail trailhead

The Presidentials as seen from Middle Sugarloaf - Click to enlarge
The Presidentials as seen from Middle Sugarloaf

The sunset from Middle Sugarloaf - Click to enlarge
The sunset from Middle Sugarloaf

Directions to trailhead: Take US 302 west from Bartlett past Bretton Woods Ski Area. In winter, there is a plowed parking lot on the right, shortly after a bridge, just before the closed Zealand Road entrance appears on the left. In winter, to get to the trailhead from there, one can hike up Zealand Road.

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