The lot was empty. When I signed in I noted 2 groups had attempted the range on Saturday--one left a note about "almost" making the summit of Santa.

The trail into Bradley pond had leaves, mud, running water, deep standing water, ice glaze on logs, ice, light snow. I had actually hoped for more ice, but the entire trail is extremely wet and slick.

Took the New/Old trail following a previous group. Brook crossing was very easy; beaver pond is not. Mud is nowhere near frozen. Snow the whole way up, getting progressively deeper. The rope up the rock face is now a necessity given the ice. Saturday's hikers turned back around 1/4 mile from the summit at a largish drift. I wore microspikes and did not have snowshoes. There is quite a bit of snow around the summit, but all the branches, rocks, icy spruce, etc. would have made for hard going in snowshoes. That said, by the next snowfall, snowshoes will be a necessity at least around the summits of this range. Mud bogs on the way to the summit are still unfroven, alas. There were no tracks from times square. I dithered a bit--go back or see if the other group had gotten Couch. I post holed some--in about 10 inches of snow (sorry), but the snow lessened on the descent to times square. Path was easy to follow.
Other group had made it to Times square, having come up from Bradley Pond, and then turned back. Path to Couch was also easy to find, and snow decreased to perhaps 2-4 inches after the first part of the descent. I was disappointed to note the wooden sign is missing, though the yellow disk is there.
It was late but Panther is quick and beautiful. Again, I had only one missed turn at a drifted in blowdown. Snow here also becoming deep enough for snowshoes.
Managed to make it down and beyond the worst of the mud before dark. The herd path has snow the whole way down and is icy around the wet rocks, and the Bradley Pond trail is difficult by head lamp given the amount of standing water. Road walk was a relief under the stars.
Thanks to those 2 groups. Made it possible for me climb up Santa quickly and then get to the summits, knowing I had a path to follow down in the waning light.
Gear-traction, snowshoes might be a good idea
lots of mittens and waterprood clothing--trees are laden with frozen snow.