Hike the Franconia Range
New Hampshire › Whitehouse Trailhead
Added by Rebecca Nichols
Walk part of the Appalachian Trail (Franconia Ridge) and witness some of the White Mountains most spectacular views!
You will want to spot cars for this traverse. Starting at the Whitehouse trailhead you will follow the Whitehouse trail for 0.9 miles (which includes a bike path portion) to the Liberty Springs junction. At the junction you will turn right and follow the Liberty Springs trail for 0.6 miles until your next junction.
From here you will again take a right and follow the Flume Slide trail for 3.3 miles. The trail varies in terrain. It features a lot of rock hopping, several stream crossings, some fun scrambles and some sections of slab climbing. Once you reach the ridge you will take a left and begin your final climb to your first peak Mount Flume 4328 ft. Here you will see the rest of your hike laid out for you to view.
Continuing on trail you will head back into the woods continuing along trail for 1.2 miles until you reach your next peak Mount Liberty 4459 ft. The views get better with each peak. Here you can look back at Mt. Flume.
The next 1.9 mile stretch is a beautiful walk through the woods until you come out above treeline. Keep in mind once you break treeline you will be exposed for several miles. You will reach Little Haystack Mountain 4780 ft first. From here you will see the ridge you will continue on with 360 views surrounding you. Follow the ridge trail 0.7 miles until you reach Mount Lincoln 5089 ft. Take time to look back at what you just accomplished and look ahead at the beautiful ridge you still continue on. The next 0.9 miles brings you over Mount Truman 5000 ft and to your final peak Mount Lafayette 5249 ft. You can look down from here at the Greenleaf Hut which you will later pass (or stop for some cold water or hot chili).
After taking in the views you begin a 1.1 mile descent on the Greenleaf trail to the hut. The hut offers bathrooms, water, (food and shelter at a cost) and keep in mind on nice weekends may be booked solid.
Now the final 2.9 miles you will descend on the Old Bridle Path trail. The trail offers some great lookouts. This will lead you to the Lafayette Place parking where hopefully you have a second car.
The Franconia Ridge trail can be very busy please do your part and stay on trail and off the vegetation. Use proper hiking etiquette and most importantly leave no trace! This of course goes for anytime you are out wandering!
* Hiking Boots
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More
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Lots of Alpine Hiking
A large portion of this hike is above treeline and gives way to amazing views in every direction. However, this is a very large time commitment, be sure to start very early! For a group of 20 year old guys in good shape, it took us ~7 hours round trip!
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