Steve Sawyer and Fred Knight
On our way up to the Whites, we decided to add Welch-Dickey near Waterville (Exit 28) before going to the Squam Range. We had scuttled our previous plan of Mt Jefferson, thinking that staying south would give us easier hiking due to the advertised large amount of snow (20+ inches) and wind, but conditions on Mt Eisenhower look fine. However, Sunday was too windy; see this one from Mt Washington. As it was, the new snow was at most a few inches where we hiked. Not sure about farther north. The day was calm and warm, and the footing was decent with a great cushion of soft snow on a solid base. All told, ~10 miles in about 6 hours. See pics here.
Hike #1: Welch-Dickey
The loop over the two peaks is 4.4 miles and can be treacherous withe bare ice falls. The new snow made footing great. The sky was overcast but clouds were high, so we got good views. The trail, which Steve had done before, was quite smooth with some sweet passages in rocks and with open slabs to cross.
Summary: 4.4 miles in 2.75 hours, 1900′ rise
Hike #2: Mt Morgan and Mt Percival
We drove to the Mt Morgan Trail parking lot and started up at 11am. The hike is the reverse of the one that Charlie and Doug Anderson and I did 15 months ago. I omitted taking my snowshoes, given the small amount of snow that we encountered on the first hike. We both used microspikes throughout. The snow got a little deeper, but the base was stable with only a few postholes. We had a bit of blue sky, but it was mostly overcast with great views of Squam and Winnepausaukee and the surrounding hills. Only slight bother was snow falling from trees and some sleet at the end of the hike.
Summary: 5.4 miles in 3:20, 1700′ rise, perfect conditions.