View Full Version : Anyone know current trail conditions for Puzzle Mtn, Baldpates, Grafton Notch area?

The Unstrung Harp
12-05-2012, 09:05 AM
Thinking of heading up there in a day or two and wondering what to expect.

Would love to revisit the Baldpates but wondering if they'll be all crazy ice.

Thinking maybe Puzzle would be a bit more tame but never been - anyone have any thoughts on whether that may be the case?

Thanks in advance!

12-05-2012, 09:25 AM
Thanks for reminding me about Puzzle. I haven't been there for years. As I recall, a nice bit of trail.

12-05-2012, 10:13 AM
We had plenty of rain over in Gorham last night and warm temps in the last few days, I expect it will get icy now that the temps dropping. Usually our weather is quite close to what happens over that area.

Lost Dad
12-05-2012, 10:48 AM
Puzzle will likely be more tame. It is a very ledgy hike with tons of views. While the ledges may have ice flows on them, there is very little on the hike that would be considered as being steep. If I remember correctly, the ledges start around 1700' and continue on & off to the top. I only remember 1 big step up that might cause problems but there is a handy tree right there for assistance. Certainly a peak that would need no more than Micros.
This is somewhat of a "local" peak for me and one of my favorites.

12-05-2012, 01:04 PM
What peakbagger said. Here in Bethel it's warm and moist today, and as the temp drops, ice will form. The ledges on Puzzle are much less steep than East Baldpate. I'd throw light traction in the pack just in case, but you'll likely not need it. If you do choose to visit Puzzle, be sure to check out the Woodsum Loopette! Cross over the summit and look for a trail on your right, not far past the peak. It was signed when I was there last year. It will loop around the south side of the summit and deposit you on the trail you climbed on your way up. It's a new-ish trail and was sometimes hard to follow when we did it but it went over some different ledges with interesting views.

The Unstrung Harp
12-05-2012, 07:51 PM
Thank you so much for the info!! Will def check out the Loopette, Veg. So awesome to have this community available. Thank you!

Also curious if anyone has been on Old Speck in the last several days. Totally want to go spend a night a Speck Pond before it is uber-wintery....might not happen but maybe.......

12-06-2012, 07:39 PM
Several summers ago, after a long day on the Grafton Loop from the Baldpates, and a lousy campsite on the backside of Puzzle, the summit and hike down the frontside were pleasant and beautiful, very uplifting. I'm glad to see you had a good hike and also enjoyed Puzzle!!!

12-06-2012, 07:46 PM
puzzle is a nice hill but pretty quick rd. trip, def. check out the Woodsum spur trail (it's named after my grandpa Kenneth Woodsum) if you have the time a double header with rumford whitecap and puzzle would be fun!

The Unstrung Harp
12-06-2012, 08:03 PM
Cool about your gramps, natron.

My map didn't have the Woodsum Loop on it so I didn't even know about it until you-all mentioned it, but it totally made the hike. There is so much beauty up there to explore. If anyone reads this in hindsight, make time for the loop!! I believe the trailhead to summit to around the loop to back to trailhead is around 8.6miles. It took us 6.5hours total, including stops for snack, pics, ice navigation, etc.

Might do a blog/pics at some point...

12-06-2012, 08:24 PM
The Grafton Notch area really is just beautiful. And of course one of the best parts about hiking in there in the summer is the self-serve homemade pie stand on Rte 26.

12-07-2012, 08:25 AM
The Grafton Notch area really is just beautiful. And of course one of the best parts about hiking in there in the summer is the self-serve homemade pie stand on Rte 26.

That would be a compliment on pies, coming from you, Michael J.