View Full Version : Hawthorne Falls

03-01-2005, 02:39 PM
During and after a hike up the Gale River Trail last summer I got to thinking about a bushwhack up to Hawthorne Falls. One website said the falls are 100 feet tall. That would make them among the most impressive in the White Mountains, and worth the climb. I'm thinking of this hike for early June.
On the lost trail's website it looks like there was once a road that ran up the brook to a camp that was used by the Garfield Ridge trailbuilders. So, even if it's mostly grown over it should be level and graded.
Has anyone done this route up to Garfield Ridge Trail? Is the name of the creek that flows over Hawthorne Falls the Garfield Brook? Can someone pinpoint by landmark where the brook crosses the Gale River Trail?
Are there any environmental concerns, endangered plants, erosion, etc.?
I also read where it might be easier to follow this route down to the falls rather than up. Any opinions?

03-02-2005, 04:28 PM
That's the clearest map I've seen of that area. It looks like the trail is on the south and east side of the brook and that the trail goes straight up and south to the Garfield Ridge Trail after the falls, whereas the brook is coming down from the southwest.
I read where the old trail can be found almost opposite the Franconia Brook Trail but I'm not sure where it left from the Gale River Trail. Would it be near the area where the trail is above the wide-open area of the brook with the view of North Twin? Or is that too high up the Gale River Trail?
From this map, it looks very steep between the brook and Flat Mtn. summit.
I'd love to read an account of the Waterman trip or the Gene Daniell trip that went that route.

03-02-2005, 04:45 PM
There was in fact once a trail that went all the way to the ridge, see 1941 Forest map http://s92966274.onlinehome.us/wmnf1941/wm41pemi.jpg

Note that this segment of USGS map shows both ends :-) http://docs.unh.edu/NH/frcn32ne.jpg

There was once a winter AMC trip with Gene Daniell that climbed Garfield this way that Guy Waterman went on, a well-known outdoor writer & I rue that we didn't :-(

The falls is much closer to the trail at the top but of course it's a longer walk to get there, the easiest route thus depends on whether you prefer trail or bushwhack. I hiked the lower part of the former trail on return from Flat Top Mtn and it's pretty well gone.

03-02-2005, 06:47 PM
Try the following search:
Brings up several sources of info on Hawthorne falls, including an earlier thread on VFTT.