View Full Version : South Fringe - White Mt. trip

02-28-2011, 09:54 AM
Four separate questions: Trip will take place in June. Please label your responses 1-4, so I am aware of which question you are referring to. Thanks.

1) I am planning a hike to Rattlesnake Mt. on Squam Lake. According to the White Mt. map there is a myriad of trails there. What route would make a good 5 mile circular...where do I park? Is there any swimming stop along the route?

2) I want to do a circular of Mt. Roberts/Faraway Mt from Shannon Pond. The east side of the loop gives me two options (A) the Cold Spring Trail or (B) (longer) Faraway Mountain Trail all the way into the Turtleback Mountain Trail. Is the views/hiking on the Faraway Mt. Trail worth the extra distance, thus is one route more preferable to the other for the east portion of this loop. What would be the total mileages for this circular hike for each option? Which way should I do this loop - clockwise or counter-clockwise? Note: I have a Castle in the Clouds Conservation Area hiking trail map.

3) Which is a more interesting way to ascend/descend Mt. Israel? Wentworth or Mead Trails? From Beede Falls to the Guinea Pond Trailhead - do you need a SUV/4 wheel drive vehicle to negotiate that section of Sandwich Notch Road?

4) Do you need a White Mountain Parking pass at the Piper Trailhead for Chocorua on NH 16? What is parking like there? Is parking limited (get there early)?

Answers to all these questions will complete my planning of this trip.

02-28-2011, 10:13 AM
3) Why not do both? You can ascend by the steeper, much more popular Wentworth Trail and descend by the Mead, to the Guinea Pond Trail. Forced to choose, I'd take the Mead because it is less traveled, as a result has nicer footing, more flowers etc. The dirt road-walk back to the Beede Falls end of the Bearcamp River Tr. isn't all that long and will save your car some rough going. I haven't been on it in over a year but as of then, an SUV/4WD probably wouldn't have been necessary but careful driving, definitely.

4) Yes, you must pay to park at the Piper lot. It is big and I haven't known it to be completely full. There is free parking at the Hammond trailhead, not far from there.

I could take a crack at (2) also, but am out of time for now. Maybe someone else will save me the trouble.

02-28-2011, 11:13 AM
3) I planned on doing a 3-sided circuit. Just was requesting which way up and which way down. Plus wanted to know if I can spot cars or is the road treacherous for a passenger car. The car shuttle I guesstimated based on guidebook figures from Center Sandwich is 2.5 miles, so advantageous to do. (almost an exta hour in walking time added). So I take your answer as ascend Wentworth and descend Mead/Guinea Pond.

4) Since I want to climb Middle Sister as well as Chocorua. I'll pay the parking fee. At least I know the lot is big and there will be no other parking issues.

Thanks for the quick reply.

Mohamed Ellozy
02-28-2011, 11:20 AM
2. Not sure how I would go up, but definitely go down the Mt. Roberts Trail for the views.

I no longer hike Mt. Roberts as a loop, prefer the up and down. I am in Brookline without my maps, but there is a longer way to go up Mt. Roberts by parking on the highway rather than at the bottling plant.

02-28-2011, 12:40 PM
So I take your answer as ascend Wentworth and descend Mead/Guinea Pond.

Correct. The Wentworth Trail is much steeper and eroded in a few places - a type of trail I much prefer to climb than to descend. You're right that the road-walk from the west end of the Guinea Pond Trail to the start of the Bearcamp River Trail, near Beede Falls, is 2.5 miles - a little longer than I remembered from my road-walk in the summer of '09. It is mainly downhill and I jogged a lot of it, taking well under 60 minutes. I don't recall any parking at the Guinea Pond Trailhead, but think there are some small pull-overs not too far from it.

I drove the length of Sawyer Notch Road in my Outback, in the summer of '07. It was in rough shape and I regretted my choice of route, as it took me forever (although my car emerged unscathed). It looked about the same in '09, but its condition varies depending on how recently they have graded it. You can probably get a current report shortly before your trip.

02-28-2011, 05:58 PM
1. The only parking lot is roadside for Old Bridle Path, else you are parking roadside. How about down the ridge, descend to 5 finger point, back via Undercut which is boring but gets you there

swimming perhaps at 5 finger, unless you count beaver pond on col trail

2. Get the TB map and you will find other trail choices plus distances, somebody here may e-mail you a link. The Roberts Trail has the best views but is the roughest, so I would go up that way and down the carriage road of your choice

3. Sandwich Notch requires careful driving with car in June

03-01-2011, 10:20 AM
#1: Rattlesnake Mtn. Studying the White Mountain map and the description of the trails in the 27th edition of the White mountain guide - pages 330-331, then the game plan looks like for one car 9-->8-->7-->6 (loop around & back)-->5. Now return 2-->1. Possible swim at Five Finger Point.

Other comments appreciated. Maybe I will ascend Mt. Roberts Trail.

03-01-2011, 11:07 AM
#1: Further study and examining the description in the guidebook; I can not tell if the Five Finger Point Trail from the junction of the East Rattlesnake Trail back to the East Rattlesnake Trail is a total aggregate of 2.7 miles or 1.3 miles (with the stem 0.7 a portion of the total 1.3 miles. and the loop is 0.6 mile). Description is vague on this. Can anyone confirm this for me? The hike I described in my previous post is 7 miles. If the total Five Finger Point Trail (round trip) is 2.7 miles (which is what it sounds like).

Lefty E
03-01-2011, 11:44 AM
#1: I'm looking at the Squam Lakes Association trail guide with map included and it states the East Rattlesnake Trail from Pinehurst Rd. is .7 to summit. Says .2 from road 5 Finger Trail goes right...then guide says 5 Finger Point Loop is 2.7 total...7 to get shoreline, 1.3 loop, .7 back..hope this helps, you could check out www.squamlakes.org...hope you have good weather!! Lefty E

03-01-2011, 02:42 PM
Thanks Lefty. That makes my hike 7 miles. Am thinking of removing the 8-->7 portion of the hike and substitute it with a short road walk on Pinehurst Road and then taking the Pasture Trail into the Five Finger Trail. It looks like that would eliminate a 2nd climb of Rattlesnake East en route as I will hit it on the return. Now am rethinking of doing the hike in reverse eliminating Rattlesnake East on the return after a possible swim. That also might cut off 1/3 of a mile or so.

It looks like all questions have been answered, so I thank you all for your responses and help.

03-02-2011, 07:11 AM
2. In June, you would be better off taking the Cold Springs Trail to close the loop, despite its road walk at the end. The Faraway Mountain Trail, below the Cold Springs intersection, contours around a lovely valley but is unpleasantly wet in many places in the spring.