Saturday, July 27, 2013

Section of White Mountain Forest trail to close for repairs in New Hampshire

CAMPTON, New Hampshire — Part of a popular trail in the White Mountains National Forest will be closed next month for repairs to damage done during Tropical Storm Irene.

The closure affects part of the Lincoln Woods Trail located off the Kancamagus Highway in Lincoln.

The U.S. Forest Service says it was able to stabilize the trail for short-term use, but a section of it requires extensive restoration.

The work will start in early to mid-August and affect the west side of the suspension bridge to the Osseo Trail junction. It's estimated six to eight weeks are needed to make the repairs.

"High water from Irene eroded the river bank, causing the edge of the trail to wash into the river," said Jon Morrissey, Pemigewasset District ranger. "Approximately 500 feet of the Lincoln Woods Trail, which follows along the East Branch of the Pemigewasset River, will be realigned away from the eroded river bank to a safer and more sustainable location."

The Forest Service said the Eastside Trail, located on the east side of the river, will be open for day hikes and to access the Pemigewasset Wilderness. Hikers should note, though, that there is no bridged crossing of the East Branch of the Pemigewasset River via this route.

The Forest Service said the closure may affect the ability to complete other popular hiking routes such as the Pemi Loop and restrict access from the Lincoln Woods Trail to Franconia Falls, Bondcliff, Thirteen Falls Tentsite, and the summit of Owl's Head.

Signs will be posted at trailheads with details about the closure.