Mt. Israel with a side trip the Beede Falls.

vftt.org

Help Support vftt.org:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

sierra

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 13, 2004
Messages
3,345
Reaction score
425
Location
New hampshire
Trying to find some snow free routes and Mt. Israel did the trick. It's a nice hike up the Wentworth trail, nothing challenging, just a pleasant hike. I enjoy the section of trail up on the ridge, the way it meanders along to the summit as if not in any hurry. Went down to the summit ledge as well for lunch. Took a walk up Sandwich Notch Road (still closed) to check out the flow of Beede Falls it did not disappoint. They re-routed a section of the Wentworth trail in the middle and I cannot fathom why, I don't like the new route, it's soft, has few rocks and looks like it will erode in no time, granted I am not a trail maintainer, just my opinion. They did a similar re-route on South Moat and the new switchbacks are literally 10 ft from each other, care to guess if people are cutting off the switchbacks? Anyway, just love Sandwich and always enjoy hiking in this area. Always stop by the Foothills Cafe for coffee and occasionally a sandwich, very cozy local shop, super nice people who run it.
 

Attachments

  • 20240420_144324.jpg
    20240420_144324.jpg
    242.5 KB · Views: 1
I need an easy half day hike for my first day in NH (August) and Israel looks like a great option. It's on the 52wav list and it's one I haven't done before. It's also on the way to my (lodging) destination so I can do it as a side trip instead of backtracking later. I haven't hiked much in that part of NH so Israel and at some point, Morgan and Percival will be new venues for me.
 
Hey Sierra, ever done Kearsarge South? Like Monadnock another nice open summit in the "Earlier Spring" zone.
Me and my dog do it fairly often since it's pretty close to where we live. Myself, off and on for quite a few years, a wonderful little mountain that I particularly enjoy in the winter.
 
Hey Sierra, ever done Kearsarge South? Like Monadnock another nice open summit in the "Earlier Spring" zone.

That does look like an interesting peak and I have never been to that area before. It looks like the Lincoln Trail would be the longest route. What is that area like in the Spring? i.e. roads open, any mud season restrictions, etc, etc. Be curious to know. Been scanning the maps desperately looking for new Spring hikes to do. Appreciate any current info on the area, that trail.
 
That does look like an interesting peak and I have never been to that area before. It looks like the Lincoln Trail would be the longest route. What is that area like in the Spring? i.e. roads open, any mud season restrictions, etc, etc. Be curious to know. Been scanning the maps desperately looking for new Spring hikes to do. Appreciate any current info on the area, that trail.
The Lincoln trail is the route one of my friends uses and loves, it's longer than the other routes, but she swears it's a great route. Right now it's still a mess. I climb up the other side year round and it "opens up" faster condition wise and is doable with little issues as of right now. The loop I use is the Winslow/Barlow loop out of the Winslow State Park. The park like many state parks opens close to the end or middle of May. Don't let that deter you, I actually prefer the climb when the park is closed, the access road adds about 1 mile each way up a steady, but easy road to the trailhead. I do the loop counter-clockwise as the Winslow trail is shorter and more "slabby" the Barlow trail meanders down a faint ridge into a fine forest that flanks the mountain and completes the loop at the trailhead. This is an easy mountain, beautiful and great hiking, me and my dog average 3 hours car to car that includes breaks and all, with the road closed your looking at 4.5 miles and an elevation gain of 1539 ft. Fire tower at the summit ( closed to hikers) views are extensive from the Whites to Vermont. Route 89 just south of Concord NH is the way there.
 
Last edited:
The Lincoln trail is the route one of my friends uses and loves, it's longer than the other routes, but she swears it's a great route. Right now it's still a mess. I climb up the other side year round and it "opens up" faster condition wise and is doable with little issues as of right now. The loop I use is the Winslow/Barlow loop out of the Winslow State Park. The park like many state parks opens close to the end or middle of May. Don't let that deter you, I actually prefer the climb when the park is closed, the access road adds about 1 mile each way up a steady, but easy road to the trailhead. I do the loop counter-clockwise as the Winslow trail is shorter and more "slabby" the Barlow trail meanders down a faint ridge into a fine forest that flanks the mountain and completes the loop at the trailhead. This is an easy mountain, beautiful and great hiking, but me and my dog average 3 hours car to car that includes breaks and all, with the road closed your looking at 4.5 miles and an elevation gain of 1539 ft. Fire tower at the summit ( closed to hikers) views are extensive from the Whites to Vermont. Route 89 just south of Concord NH is the way there.

"Still a mess" as in snow and mud or the road situation? I noticed on Gaia that the trailhead lot shows as "closed". Is that a seasonal road?

It's about a 2h 45m ride for me to that area so I generally want a longer approach. With my normal rides I'm usually looking to do 10-14 miles and/or something of significant difficulty that it eats up at least 7-8 hours to justify the ride. The longer the day the better but I've done virtually no hiking the past 6 months so my "typical" hikes are probably not realistic. A 2 hour hike with 6-7 hours of driving doesn't fit the bill for me even when I'm out of shape. Appreciate the suggestions though. Need to explore some new areas this year and some new peaks.
 
"Still a mess" as in snow and mud or the road situation? I noticed on Gaia that the trailhead lot shows as "closed". Is that a seasonal road?

It's about a 2h 45m ride for me to that area so I generally want a longer approach. With my normal rides I'm usually looking to do 10-14 miles and/or something of significant difficulty that it eats up at least 7-8 hours to justify the ride. The longer the day the better but I've done virtually no hiking the past 6 months so my "typical" hikes are probably not realistic. A 2 hour hike with 6-7 hours of driving doesn't fit the bill for me even when I'm out of shape. Appreciate the suggestions though. Need to explore some new areas this year and some new peaks
You could look into the Ossipee Range. The Ossipee 10 can offer you hikes up to and over 10 miles. Very cool area with old tote roads, well beaten trails, not so well beaten trails that require at least some route finding. Most of the trails are accessed from the central hub known as the Castle of the Clouds grounds. The range is actually an old volcano and it circles this central area of fields and ponds. This area is in Moultonborough and its a cool area to explore, me and my dog consider it one of our "home" ranges.
 
You could look into the Ossipee Range. The Ossipee 10 can offer you hikes up to and over 10 miles. Very cool area with old tote roads, well beaten trails, not so well beaten trails that require at least some route finding. Most of the trails are accessed from the central hub known as the Castle of the Clouds grounds. The range is actually an old volcano and it circles this central area of fields and ponds. This area is in Moultonborough and its a cool area to explore, me and my dog consider it one of our "home" ranges.
I used to drive through that area just about every weekend for 10 years or thereabouts on my way to North Conway. For whatever reason I never stopped to explore. That patio area at the Lakes Of The Clouds mansion is unbelievable. What a view. They should have a bar there. What a spot for a beverage!

Back to the maps! Thanks.
 
Castle in the Clouds does provide a restaurant and a bar and its a cool place for a post-hike hydration session.

If you use FB search for "Ossipee Range Hikers" page. Lots of trip reports and trail beta you will find useful as you explore the area.

There are patches and certificates for completing the "Ossipee 10" peaks in summer and in winter. And a recent trend is folks gridding the Ossipee 10! Much more doable with only 10 hills versus 48 :)
 
Castle in the Clouds does provide a restaurant and a bar and its a cool place for a post-hike hydration session.

If you use FB search for "Ossipee Range Hikers" page. Lots of trip reports and trail beta you will find useful as you explore the area.

There are patches and certificates for completing the "Ossipee 10" peaks in summer and in winter. And a recent trend is folks gridding the Ossipee 10! Much more doable with only 10 hills versus 48 :)
I was just on the Franklin website looking at the Trail Bandits map (which I seem to recall was recommended for the area). I guess my big question is on the trailheads. With Lakes Of The Clouds closed can you still access the Mount Roberts Trailhead? That looks like the best option for me to get a big loop in and have trail options to get back to my car versus a road walk. Any other thoughts on the trailheads? How busy can I expect this area to be on a SAT AM at this time of year? Thanks in advance for the info.
 
Last edited:
I was just on the Franklin website looking at the Trail Bandits map (which I seem to recall was recommended for the area). I guess my big question is on the trailheads. With Lakes Of The Clouds closed can you still access the Mount Roberts Trailhead? That looks like the best option for me to get a big loop in and have trail options to get back to my car versus a road walk. Any other thoughts on the trailheads? How bust can I expect this area to be on a SAT AM at this time of year? Thanks in advance for the info.
Trailhead is always accessible
 
"Still a mess" as in snow and mud or the road situation? I noticed on Gaia that the trailhead lot shows as "closed". Is that a seasonal road?

It's about a 2h 45m ride for me to that area so I generally want a longer approach. With my normal rides I'm usually looking to do 10-14 miles and/or something of significant difficulty that it eats up at least 7-8 hours to justify the ride. The longer the day the better but I've done virtually no hiking the past 6 months so my "typical" hikes are probably not realistic. A 2 hour hike with 6-7 hours of driving doesn't fit the bill for me even when I'm out of shape. Appreciate the suggestions though. Need to explore some new areas this year and some new peaks.

The Lincoln Trail is in fine shape now for the spring -- just some wet patches/muddy sections down low. And, yes, the trailhead is always accessible. It's even plowed in winter; we use it frequently then. It's now our go-to approach to the summit to avoid the often-busier Winslow and Barlow Trails.

Also of note, this trail is part of the SRKG -- worth a look, too, if you take the time to drive here to do the Lincoln Trail. Most of this loop trail is relatively quiet, as well.
 
I was just on the Franklin website looking at the Trail Bandits map (which I seem to recall was recommended for the area). I guess my big question is on the trailheads. With Lakes Of The Clouds closed can you still access the Mount Roberts Trailhead? That looks like the best option for me to get a big loop in and have trail options to get back to my car versus a road walk. Any other thoughts on the trailheads? How busy can I expect this area to be on a SAT AM at this time of year? Thanks in advance for the info.
Bandit's map is still the best reference for area trails as it covers routes on both public and private lands. In my experience trails are accurately located on Gaia GPS and usually well maintained and blazed.

All trailheads are accessible, some with minor restrictions. For example, parking is not available at Merrowvista trail heads when camp is in session (summer) for the Sentinel and Flagg trails.

The Shaw trail head on Rt 117 is always open.

If you are used to the hiking 4Ks, this area will not seem busy at all!
 
I was just on the Franklin website looking at the Trail Bandits map (which I seem to recall was recommended for the area). I guess my big question is on the trailheads. With Lakes Of The Clouds closed can you still access the Mount Roberts Trailhead? That looks like the best option for me to get a big loop in and have trail options to get back to my car versus a road walk. Any other thoughts on the trailheads? How busy can I expect this area to be on a SAT AM at this time of year? Thanks in advance for the info.
Thought I would suggest two hikes to get you started. I picked these based on your desire to get in some miles and the second hike is my favorite hike in the range.
1. Mt. Roberts and Mt. Faraway loop. Ascend Mt. Roberts via the Mt. Roberts trail, traverse over to Mt. Faraway via the high ridge trail, descend the Mt. Faraway trail. 9.4 miles roughly.
2. Mt Shaw and Black Snout. Start at route 171 on the Mt. Shaw trail, at the small cairn take a right on the Italian trail and ascend over Big Ball to Black Snout, continuing on the high ridge trail to Mt. Shaw. Come back to the High ridge trail and find and descend the Mt. Shaw trail. This loop will require some rudimentary route finding between Big Ball and Black Snout, but nothing terrible. 7.5 miles. Side note, there are many bears in this valley, fyi.
You can fill in the gaps with the Trail Bandit maps, any questions feel free to ask.
 
Oh my! It's been about 20+ years since I sat on that patio and I don't recall it having anything other than soda and basic refreshments. All I kept saying to my wife (girlfriend at the time) is "Can you imagine sitting here all afternoon with some cocktails?". Looks like I need to revisit that spot.

Oh my! It's been about 20+ years since I sat on that patio and I don't recall it having anything other than soda and basic refreshments. All I kept saying to my wife (girlfriend at the time) is "Can you imagine sitting here all afternoon with some cocktails?". Looks like I need to revisit that spot. :)
Don't get too excited. "During our normal operating season, guests may bring food and non-alcoholic beverages for themselves to enjoy at any of the designated picnic areas on the property".
 
Don't get too excited. "During our normal operating season, guests may bring food and non-alcoholic beverages for themselves to enjoy at any of the designated picnic areas on the property".
:(
 
Thought I would suggest two hikes to get you started. I picked these based on your desire to get in some miles and the second hike is my favorite hike in the range.
1. Mt. Roberts and Mt. Faraway loop. Ascend Mt. Roberts via the Mt. Roberts trail, traverse over to Mt. Faraway via the high ridge trail, descend the Mt. Faraway trail. 9.4 miles roughly.
2. Mt Shaw and Black Snout. Start at route 171 on the Mt. Shaw trail, at the small cairn take a right on the Italian trail and ascend over Big Ball to Black Snout, continuing on the high ridge trail to Mt. Shaw. Come back to the High ridge trail and find and descend the Mt. Shaw trail. This loop will require some rudimentary route finding between Big Ball and Black Snout, but nothing terrible. 7.5 miles. Side note, there are many bears in this valley, fyi.
You can fill in the gaps with the Trail Bandit maps, any questions feel free to ask.
I went up SAT and did a 17 mile loop: up Mt Roberts Trail > High Ridge Trail > Turtleback Trail back to car with stops on Black Snout and Turtleback spurs. One thing I did not realize was that the trails are actually roads because they are also snowmobile trails in Winter. Not a big road fan. I thought the Mount Roberts Trail was AWESOME. Love trails like that with grassy areas, stunted oaks covered in lichens and lots of outlooks. I thought I was going to have a hike for the ages thinking the whole ridge was going to be like that. High Ridge wasn't bad but seemed to go on forever heading over to Mt Shaw. Reminded me of some trails I've done in NC with the high outlooks and all the switchbacks. The outlook on Shaw is pretty awesome. Washington looked like Mt Fuji or something in the distance, dominating the horizon with its snow covered slopes. The Turtleback Trail I thought was lousy. Just a road and not much to look at, even with the leaves not out yet. Was like Lincoln Woods Trail with switchbacks on it. If I had realized this I probably would have made different trail selections. I'm not a big fan of road trails like that. But this loop gave me a good overall feel for the area and things I might try in the future. I got there at 6:15 AM thinking it would be busy and parking might be an issue. I was the only one there. :ROFLMAO: Didn't see a person until summit of Shaw (a very nice local woman who gave me some info on the area and then left me to enjoy the summit). I ran into her going up/coming down each summit spur after that and I didn't see another person until leaving Black Snout and saw maybe 15 people all day.

All in all I really liked the range and the area. Having all those lake views while cruising around was very cool. And the summit outlooks were all really nice. I was also pretty surprised at how much snow was still left at these elevations. Was not expecting that. I'll have to get back up there and check out the Eastern side of the area and the peaks there. Thanks for the suggestion. It really fit the mood I was in.
 
Top