It's Mud Season
The Upper Valley Trails Alliance, the Vermont Forests, Parks & Recreation Department and the Trail Finder Team recommends people interested in getting out on trails to choose their trail outings wisely during mud season. To avoid damaging treadways that will require an increased level of maintenance, please consider using hardened trails or trail alternatives (unmaintained roads - Class IV in VT or Class VI in NH, and dirt roads) until packed earth trails become dry. Please wear proper footwear and if you come upon wet or muddy areas, end your outing and back-track your route where possible.
Trails are becoming soft and very vulnerable to damage, especially at lower elevations during warmer afternoon thawing conditions. The soils are more likely to be frozen and firm in the earlier part of a day so consider a morning outing. If you do get caught in a situation where you are returning from a mountain hike and conditions have softened, be sure to stay within the treadway to avoid widening the trail and damaging the surrounding habitat. Also be aware that a narrow brook crossing can become a roaring river and a dangerous crossing point by mid-day during spring melt. As mud-season takes shape avoid the forest trails and head out on hardened alternatives.