And this is your tax dollars at work, a spandy new trail sign placed by the US Forest Service also at the junction of the A-Z Trail. The trail jurisdictions are sometimes confusing. The Zealand Trail is US Forest Service but, like most trails branching from, is maintained by the AMC.
Hiking along the Zealand Trail and just past the A-Z Trail junction there's a feeling that you are entering a sanctuary. The mountains begin to move in towards the trail creating a distinct valley there is a sense that you are in kind of a magic realm. The mountain in the photo is Zeacliff described earlier in the blog but a symbol of this valley in many ways and everytime you enter the "notch". It means you are close to the hut but also close to the pond and, to my own senses, it means I am on the very edge of the Pemigewasset Wilderness which, definitely, is a magical realm.
The lower part of Zealand Falls has been throbbing with rain water and sending up quite a roar that can be heard a mile away this spring. It is actually the bottom of the falls which begin more than a half mile up river as Whitewall Brook descends a long series of ledges and drops each one having a luxury of pot holes and pools to sit in, wade in, or swim in.
Third bridge (as one hikes into the notch) with it's slight arch as it crosses over a pond made by yet another beaver dam. I have seen moose use this bridge on several occasions.
On the way out Liz and I encountered this group of Boston Red Sox/Celtic fans who were on their way in to spend a night at the hut.
First bridge which I always count at the half way point between the parking lot and the hut.