Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Passaconaway Cutoff Trail Work: 5/3/22

A cool, cloudy day fit the bill for a spring trail maintenance trip on the Passaconaway Cutoff, the adopted trail of the AMC Four Thousand Footer Committee, just a few days after the annual FTFC awards ceremony.

Thankfully it was a bug-free day, even by this beaver pond along the Oliverian Brook Trail, where the mosquitoes will be swarming in a couple of weeks.

The entire Passaconaway Cutoff is within the Sandwich Range Wilderness. You pass the boundary on the Oliverian Brook Trail shortly before reaching the Cutoff junction.

First of 10 blowdowns of varying size encountered along the Cutoff.


The bulk of the "Level One" maintenance work on the Cutoff is cleaning drainages, 57 of them in total.

Took a few minutes to figure out how to cut and dispose of this long blowdown lying lengthwise on the trail.


Another casualty of winter or early spring winds.


The nice hardwood section of the Cutoff above the crossing of the west branch of Oliverian Brook.

Multiple drainages in a wet area.

There are a number of heavy-duty rock waterbars as the Cutoff ascends towards the Square Ledge Trail.

Last blowdown of the day, near the top of the trail. Up here I met the only hikers of the day, Tim Charboneau and his friend Sarah, who went up to Square Ledge.


Don't recall if I've ever chopped lingering ice out of a waterbar before.

Always happy to reach this sign.

View up to a shrouded Mt. Passaconaway from the top of a small cliff on the slope below the trail.

Hedgehog Mountain, Mt. Tremont and the Nancy Range out to the north.

From a spot somewhere along the Cutoff, a zoomed peek at the East Slide of Mt. Passaconaway, which fell during the Hurricane of 1938 and wiped out part of the Passaconaway Cutoff. Not until 1965 was the trail reopened.


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