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Thread: Lower elevation peak suggestions

  1. #1
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    Lower elevation peak suggestions

    I'm looking to broaden my horizons beyond popular peakbagging lists.

    I'd love to hear suggestions for VT-NH-ME lower peaks (under 3800') that offer favored attributes: good views, old growth forest, distinctive terrain, brooks and streams, places of special/historical interest, fire tower, loop possibilities. A peak combining several attributes is great, but even one is fine.

    I also find a strange attraction to mountains that offer an unusual or shapely profile when viewed from afar.

    One peak I want to visit is Chocorua, which I once climbed in cloudy conditions-basically saw nothing over 30 feet away. Another is Mt Cube which looks nice from the photos I've seen. Ascutney, too.

    My greatest aversions are overly crowded trails, trash, deeply eroded foot beds. (I make an exception for Monadnock due to long-time love of that mountain. And there's something special about glimpsing skyscrapers from afar, at least for me.)

    Suggestions, please!
    散步 Sanbu

  2. #2
    Senior Member richard's Avatar
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    Check out the “52with a view “ list in NH.
    Last edited by richard; 03-22-2019 at 03:00 AM.

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    Seconding the 52WAV list (of which Chocorua is a member peak), but I admit I'm biased.

    There are almost too many options to list ... The spectacular loop over the Baldfaces immediately come to mind, although they are becoming more popular now. In fact, the entire Evans Notch area is wonderful.

    Cube is a great mountain. If you go, don't miss the north peak.

    So many others ... Middle Sugarloaf, Percy Peaks, Mt. Parker, Shelburne Moriah, Crawford / Stairs / Resolution, Israel, Paugus, Iron Mountain, Smarts Mountain, Black Mountain (Benton), Mt. Success ...

    Southern NH has lots of little gems like French's Ledges in Plainfield, Neville Peak in Epsom, Rose Mountain in Lyndeborough, Cliff Walk on North Pack Monadnock, lesser traveled peaks in the Ossipees like Bayle Mountain and Flagg Mountain, Whiteface Mountain in Wolfeboro, Whiteface Mountain in Gilford, Parker Mountain in Strafford, tiny hikes with good views like Clark Lookout in New London and Banks Pinnacle in Grafton ...
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    Senior Member Jazzbo's Avatar
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    Mount's Kearsarge (North) near or in Conway NH and Kearsarge (South) in Warner NH are both excellent destinations. South, Middle, North Moat are far more rewarding than the usual 4K peaks. I find it depressing to see how beat up the principal trails look compared to less visited trails.
    Last edited by Jazzbo; 03-22-2019 at 06:22 AM.
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    Both Kearsarges are indeed great, but I didn't mention them as it sounds like the OP is looking for options away from crowds.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member kerry13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sanbu View Post
    I'm looking to broaden my horizons beyond popular peakbagging lists.


    (I make an exception for Monadnock due to long-time love of that mountain. And there's something special about glimpsing skyscrapers from afar, at least for me.)

    Suggestions, please!
    I share your passion for Monadnock. It has been at least a weekly thing for me for the last 15 or so years. Here is a pic of the Boston skyline taken last weekend. About the clearest view I have had in all those years.Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Boston skyline very prominent today.jpg 
Views:	124 
Size:	98.1 KB 
ID:	6187
    Yesterday is history, Tomorrow a mystery,
    Today is a gift, enjoy it!

    Kerry

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    Senior Member Barkingcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dingo View Post
    Seconding the 52WAV list.

    There are almost too many options to list ... The spectacular loop over the Baldfaces immediately come to mind, although they are becoming more popular now. In fact, the entire Evans Notch area is wonderful.

    Cube is a great mountain. If you go, don't miss the north peak.

    So many others ... Middle Sugarloaf, Percy Peaks, Mt. Parker, Shelburne Moriah, Crawford / Stairs / Resolution, Israel, Paugus, Iron Mountain, Smarts Mountain, Black Mountain (Benton), Mt. Success ...

    Southern NH has lots of little gems like French's Ledges in Plainfield, Neville Peak in Epsom, Rose Mountain in Lyndeborough, Cliff Walk on North Pack Monadnock, lesser traveled peaks in the Ossipees like Bayle Mountain and Flagg Mountain, Whiteface Mountain in Wolfeboro, Whiteface Mountain in Gilford, Parker Mountain in Strafford, tiny hikes with good views like Clark Lookout in New London and Banks Pinnacle in Grafton ...
    Yes -- agreed -- any of these, even on weekends in the summer, and you might have the place to yourself. Certainly mid-week in non-summer months, and you're likely to see no one else.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzbo View Post
    Mount's Kearsarge (North) near or in Conway NH and Kearsarge (South) in Warner NH are both excellent destinations. South, Middle, North Moat are far more rewarding than the usual 4K peaks. I find it depressing to see how beat up the principal trails look compared to less visited trails.
    For the Kearsarges, mid-week non-summer months is best for limiting the chance of crowds; the Moats as well. Also, using lesser-used trails, if available, will help: for instance, the Lincoln Trail, from the east, up the southern Mt. Kearsarge is one such route. You'll most likely never see anyone on this, even in the summer, until you reach the summit.

  8. #8
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    Great suggestions. A couple not yet mentioned:
    Roger's Ledge via Mill Brook: Views, brooks and streams
    Webster Slide via Wachipauka Pond/Webster Slide: Views, loop options using Old AT routes and rail trail.
    Sunday River Whitecap: Views

  9. #9
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    Other suggestions...

    Piermont Mountain in Piermont (private trail but open to hikers)
    Hedgehog Ridge / Wilson Hill in Deering
    Clark Summit in Deering
    Pine Mountain in Alton
    Pine Mountain in Gorham
    Pitcher Mountain in Stoddard
    Jackson Hill in Stoddard
    Silver Mountain in Lempster
    Jerry Hill in Concord
    Carr Mountain in Warren
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    Thanx for so many suggestions, lots to look into, loads to check out. A lifetime plus to enjoy!

    Kerry13. Ooooo, love that photo. Got out a magnifying glass to see the tiny scrapers. Brought back nice memories.

    I once was on the summit of Monadnock at sunrise, had a great view towards Boston. I could have believed I saw the ocean that day, maybe it was a general reflection from the newly risen sun. But the scrapers were crystal clear. I used binoculars to get a good view. My eyes were better back then, I think I could make the buildings out with the unaided eye. Probably couldn't do that now.

    Another outstanding Monadnock memory--the snarling bobcat I saw on the White Cross/Dot trail clost to treeline. Sure didn't like my presence. Scared me. Only time I've seen a bobcat in the wild.
    散步 Sanbu

  11. #11
    Senior Member Grey J's Avatar
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    The Baldface loop, the Percy Peaks, and Crawford/Stairs are probably my favorite 3K hikes in NH thus far.
    Howker Ridge Trail (a less traveled alternate route up Madison) is a real gem, even if you only ascend to the 4th Howk at 4315.
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  12. #12
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    The Percy Peaks in Nash Stream meet some of the criteria but definitely are a long haul even if you are camping in the whites and no buildings in sight. Great views and rarely climbed. Rumford Whitecap in Maine is a geological oddity with 360 views. Not a long hike but worth it in blueberry season as its the best mountain for blueberries I have found. Sunday River Whitecap in Grafton Notch via the maintainers path has 360 views and is not that hard if you use the unofficial maintainers route (its 18 miles round trip via Grafton Loop trail versus far shorter via the maintainer path. (search VFTT for Sunday River Whitecap for my post with detailed directions). Tumbledown north of Rumford Maine has nice loop. it has prominent summit and looks a lot taller than it is. There is a very scenic mountain Pond just below the summit. Busy on fall weekends.

    Chocorua has multiple routes but is very busy. You need to go very early to summit before 11AM preferably before 10:30 and both Champney Falls from the Kanc and trips starting from the Piper Trail head are very busy.

  13. #13
    Senior Member richard's Avatar
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    Also, check out the 3 Pawtuckaway Mountains in southern NH. Nice trails & fire tower on south peak. Best during the week,but lots of bugs in late spring & summer.

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    Baldface sounds really nice. I never heard of it before. Don't even know where it is, gather it's near the NH/ME border, but is NOT the same as Baldpate. I've seen a few pics here and there on VFTT. Would appreciate a link to a nice trip report with pics. My AMC guide is half way around the world from my present location...
    散步 Sanbu

  15. #15
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
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    Improved trails with a reward of a view, interesting geology or history are going to attract hikers. It can be a matter of when you go, not where you go. Weekends are the most crowded, obviously, but other times for more solitude are weekdays, during school year, bad weather (can still be hazardous under 3800') ... think of times you'd rather do something else and that may suggest some good times!

    Moosehead Lake in Maine is ringed by mountains which, compared to the Whites, stand alone so each is a hike in itself: Big Spencer, Little Spencer, Moose, Eagle Cliff, Little Moose, Number 4, etc. I believe there is a trail under development and maybe under construction in areas that will link many of these mountains in a large loop around the lake. Loops which incorporate the AT's 100 mile wilderness along with gravel logging roads are possible and the permutations are limited only by your imagination and navigation skills. Nearby is a B-52 crash site memorialized and maintained by the local snowmobile club and Gulf Hagas is a fascinating hike, not challenging but interesting. Greenville is a good base camp but the area is surrounded by camping opportunities including AMC's lodges, North Maine Woods, sporting camps, fine inns, first come first served shelters and campsites ...

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