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View Full Version : Mt Clinton Rd & Ammonoosuc Trail Head



spider solo
02-08-2005, 07:05 PM
Does any one know why the Parking for the Ammonoosuc Trail Head is gated closed?? I went there today to check it out... it looked the same as it did a couple years ago when you could drive there via the Mt Clinton Rd.
So here we have the Base Road plowed..(lost use of the Mt Clinton Rd to snowmobiles which have their own lane along the Base Road anyway).
You drive up to the gated trail head parking lot where it's clearly posted you need a parking pass.
So there you are wondering why you have to walk around the gate get your parking pass and Pay For The Privilege of not being able to Park in the Trail head Lot !!
Surely they keep lesser used lots plowed...why not this one??

DougPaul
02-08-2005, 07:14 PM
> Does any one know why the Parking for the Ammonoosuc Trail Head is gated closed??

Answer from an earlier thread on the same topic:

The pavement is not designed to take the stresses of winter.

Doug

forestgnome
02-09-2005, 04:50 AM
Does that snowmobile lane on Base Road go from Jefferson Notch Road to Fabyan Station? The reason we lost use of Mt Clinton Road was because auto drivers on Base Rd might be confused by snowmobile headlights at night. Then a judge ruled that the snowmobiles may use the new Mt Clinton Rd route, but only during daylight hours! How does this make sense?!
Spider Solo, are you reporting that snowmobiles are using the Base Road from Jefferson Notch to Rt 302?

spider solo
02-09-2005, 06:13 AM
Doug Paul... thanks
I did a search but didn't come up with that one for an excuse. Boy just when you think you've heard them all...!
You would think they could leave the gate open and let people shovel themselves in. It was easily driveable when I looked at it. Already you have to shovel through the banking to get off the road any way...as I have had to do at other trail heads if I arrived before the lots were plowed.

Forestnome
Yes, that is exactly what it looked like to me. Along the Base Road they have their own lanes complete with signs and a new bridge or two. Though I did lose track of it near the begining of the road near the new condo style buildings....and septic lagoons, (on the right) a short ways from Fabyan Station.
At the Mt Clinton Trail head parking it appears you go head on into the snowmobile traffic till the parking lot branches of to the left.(75 yrds give or take). Of course if you are colliding with a snowmachine neither party would be thinking of the distance where they didn't get hit... just the point of impact.
Not the bigest fan of the HC center ..I could see how the AMC would be upset... the trail runs right across from them... then I lost track of it.
When all the wheeling and dealing was done it sure looks like the AMC came out on the short end of the stick.
As the Mt Clinton Road is ungated, though signs say other wise, who is to know when the 1st car of the season ventures down and the last snowmobile ventures up ?

Jim lombard
02-09-2005, 08:39 AM
The snowbank on the entrance to the Ammo parking lot is well beaten down, lots of people have parked there. When I went by on Sunday it looked like 3 well placed cars or trucks could park there....unfortunately there was a big truck taking up way more space than it needed to so we ended up parking at base station. There has been allot of hiking activity from base rd this winter, probably far more than skiing or snowmobiling ;) As of Sunday the snowmobile trail that runs alongside base rd is in very bad shape, lots of mud, and many bare spots. We didn't see or hear a single one all day.

DougPaul
02-09-2005, 09:34 AM
Doug Paul... thanks
I did a search but didn't come up with that one for an excuse. Boy just when you think you've heard them all...!
You would think they could leave the gate open and let people shovel themselves in. It was easily driveable when I looked at it. Already you have to shovel through the banking to get off the road any way...as I have had to do at other trail heads if I arrived before the lots were plowed.

I don't think the issue was plowing, it was the support under the pavement. "All weather" roads have a deeper and more complex base than a summer-only road. I suspect the same applies to parking lots. Think damage due to sub-surface freezing (presumably increased by plowing damage.) Snow (if there is any...) should insulate the pavement.

The thread was "Bad news from the Cog railway" in Q&A. Post #59 from Jim Lombard.

Doug

Panama Jack
02-09-2005, 11:35 AM
and not the good kind either :eek:

spider solo
02-10-2005, 06:59 AM
I would think it is paved to about the same qualitiy as the Base Road itself which sees all sorts of travel these days...quite the paradox not to open up the trail head after you bounce down miles of roads to get there.

-Wed Feb 9 05- (page B10) The Union Leader...This is an article stating
that the snowmobile trail will remain on Mt Clinton Road then cross over Rte 302 over to the HC center and continue from there. This brings the trail within 500 ft of the Center. Expected use ??..2,000 snowmobiles per week!

(To help put things in perspective my driveway is 600 ft long if I had 2,000 snowmachine driving across it I would move... unless I wanted to open up the rest of my yard to them..hell they might as well drive through my living room and I could serve them coffee)

Ever notice that each time a snowmobile route crosses the road it chews up the pavement.....kind of like I rumple strip... so it crosses the Base Road then 302 once or twice and they run on MT Clinton Road..they are bound to chew it up I don't see how they couldn't.
So how much would it harm things if they opened the Ammonosoocuc Trail head for parking...in the scheme of things I would think it would be a help not a hinderence.
We have lost a lot losing this area to the Cog then, losing Clinton Rd access..what have we lost ?...peace and quite at the minimum. Bit by bit we are getting squeezed out of decent access to the mountains... to lose this side of the mnts is a hard one to see. Something I had hoped not to see in my life time.

The reason for all the changes was stated that now that the Cog is open
the new route provides "safe access to the thousands who flock to the southern slope of Mount Washington for motorized fun in the snow"...E. Paul Gray Chief supervisor of the State's Bureau of Trails
(I don't know how to link the article ....maybe someone else does)

May be I'm blind in one eye and can't see out the other but I don't see thousands of snow machines on the south side of Washington. I do see and hear the Cog..but I don't see thousand of snowmobiles on the southern slope of Mount Washington...perhaps I should just say....not yet.

Mike P.
02-11-2005, 12:10 PM
The allegation is that the Snowmobile trail along base road is inadequate for the volume of traffic.

At the end of the Bad News Thread & from other trip reports it appears that the Cog is allowing parking at the lower lot for $10. (double the summer rate) It's a shorter more scenic (once you get by the Cog) approach to the junction of the old & new lower sections of the Ammo trail.

carole
02-12-2005, 06:17 PM
Okay, maybe I am missing something here but in the past few years even when you could drive up the Clinton Road, IIRC, you still couldnít use the Ammo lot. I used the small entrance area for the Ammo (the spot for 2-3 cars) a few years back and broke trail (DEEP) for the mile until I met the trail coming in from the Cog which was broken out. Iíd used up enough of my energy that I didnít even get beyond the Gem Pool. So why the complaint of not being about to use the lot when most would start at the Cog trailhead anyway since it is shorter?

Jim lombard
02-14-2005, 10:51 AM
Posted by Carole

So why the complaint of not being about to use the lot when most would start at the Cog trailhead anyway since it is shorter?

I've done Ammo both ways from the main TH and from the Cog. This year both have been well packed out.....even last year it wasn't that bad from the Ammo TH. Even though Base station gets you a little closer and higher I still would prefer going in from Ammo TH. Less exposure to the Cog is better for me.

spider solo
02-15-2005, 12:16 PM
I agree with Jim....I've never hiked it from the Cog...never plan to.