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Hiking Advice for North Conway

Essex
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Hiking Advice for North Conway

Hi all, my finacee and I are staying in North Conway for 4 nights in August and as we are both keen hikers we are keen to head out into the mountains while we are there but are not entirely sure where to start. Can anyone recommend a good walking guide/map for the area? We normally look to fit in a good 4-6 hour walk in a day sometimes more.

I imagine that walking in the White Mountains is quite different to walking in the Lake District so I was also wondering if anyone knew where we might find walking advice on safety etc.

Finally, has anyone climbed up Mount Washington (other than by car or Cog Railway)? How feasible is it from two moderately fit people to climb this in a day. I know the weather can get quite nasty but we have been hill walking in Scotland in March with a good covering of snow on the ground. How hard can it be?!

Thanks

Alistair

Pennsylvania
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1. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

there are several maps available that cover hiking trails around the white mountains..you can browse these at the "Eastern Mountain Sports" store at the south end of North Conway on Rt 16, they also have friendly people that can give lots of good advice.

There are lots of great hiking trails and you will be sure to find one that fits your specific interest.

To hike Mt Washington is feasible for you to do in a day if you are in good shape, but you need to be aware that changing weather conditions on this mountain can occur quickly, and a sunny day at the bottom can be a sub freezing blizzard at the summit.If you take this hike, be sure to take packs along with appropriate clothing and plenty of water, if the weather turns bad be sure to turn around. There have been over 130 deaths on MT Washington and many of these related to weather..so don't take it lightly. ALso, you will be pretty tired at the end of the day.

Having said that, if you have the equipment and experience it is very doable, and an amazing hike.

If you want to order trail mnaps in advance for planning, you can go to Appalachian Mountain Club web site (Outdoors.com) and browse the maps..I recommend the " White Mountains TRail Map -Presidential Range" by AMC and for a wider area of trails the "White Mountains TRail Map by Map Adventures Co is especially good

hope this helps

Baltimore, Maryland
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2. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

There are too many hikes to cover them all. AMC has a great book covering all the hikes and much is available on the net.

As for MW, my daughter, 15, and I, 50, hiked MW in August a couple of summers ago. We were concerned about the difficulty, had good backpacks, plenty of water, a hiking book, and determined to go at least 1/2 way up to Tuckerman's Ravine. We only wanted to hike a "popular" trail so that we would not be alone just in case. Dressed in short sleeves for the bottom but had sweatshirts for the top.

We started on a glorious day, Got to the 1/2 way point, met some 10 yo with their parents who were hiking the rest of the way and decided we would also.

This became one of the most incredible days of our lives. The mountain is not easy because it is not a groomed trail but rather hopping over large rocks up to Tuck's. Then there is some scrambling over rocks that can be wet over the headwall, then more scrambling thru the Alpine garden.

We spent about 90 minutes at the top and then headed back down thru Lion's head trail for something different. Total time was 10 hours. temp differential was 30 degrees.

So, being careful, it is doable with the emphasis on the careful.

I just uploaded some pics to TA and as soon as they are published, I will give you a link.

Lincoln, NH
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3. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

Since you're coming all this way, you must buy two books, and decide how much hiking you really want.

As others have noted, weather needs to be planned for -- you'll need proper footwear and appropriate clothing for changing conditions.

The best source for information is the Appalachian Mountain Club, or the AMC, they publish the Guide to the White Moutains, a comprehensive book with all maps and trail descriptions you'll need. It also has invaluable (I mean it!) information on how you should prepare for hikes. Read this, do not ignore the information. More people have died on Mt. Washington from exposure than anywhere in the US. Highest winds in the US were recorded on the summit -- 231 mph.

However, prepared and forewarned, you will have a fantastic time.

If you are able to hike Mt. Washington, I would also recommend the Franconia Notch loop trail. You'll find it in the book. Up the Bridle Trail, then over the summits of Lafayette, Lincoln and Little Haystack. Many consider this the most spectacular hike in the Whites. I am among them. The chief difference is that there is no auto road or train to the summit, as there are on Washington. I think Washington is the most majestic of all the mountains, however, the presences of persons who rode up in a car that which you just hiked takes a bit away from the experience. The solitute of the summits in Franconia are part of what makes it a great hike.

The second book is AMC's Best Day Hikes in the White Mountains. (Or something like that...) This book will give you all the best hikes, why they are special -- what you see and do -- and helps give you good ideas for shorter hikes.

And to your question -- it's entirely feasible for you to do the Washington hike. Just remember to heed the advise in the AMC guidebooks. Someone mentioned Eastern Mountain Sports. They're in North Conway and are the best source for equipment and smart people who can help you plan your hikes.

Have fun!

mifflinburg,pa
10 posts
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4. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

Here is a site that has some good info on hikes

www.hikenewengland.com

mifflinburg,pa
10 posts
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5. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

In key word type in Hedgehog mtn. A popular hike on the Kanc.

Baltimore, Maryland
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for North Conway
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6. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

Promised you a couple of pics of hiking MW

…tripadvisor.com/media/photo-t/01/31/a5/de/g…

tripadvisor.com/…20030941

Baltimore, Maryland
Destination Expert
for North Conway
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7. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

OK lets see if these are full size now

tripadvisor.com/…20030942

tripadvisor.com/…20030941

Lincoln, NH
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8. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

Great pics, neslaw! I recognize that house on Atlantic Ave... I live pretty close to there, were you just touring around the neighborhood, or have friends here?

And to Mooseseeker's suggestin on Hedgehog -- that hike is in the "Best Hikes" book I'd mentioned -- less strenuous than Franconia or Washington, great views, and the best thing about it is that it is mostly overlooked by many hikers, and you really have the trails and summits to yourselves (relatively speaking).

Baltimore, Maryland
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9. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

I grew up having a summer home on W Street in Nantasket. Was on a kind of nostalgia tour with my dad through the old neighborhood, up to Point Allerton, over to Hull, and then a loop thru Atlantic av

Baltimore, Maryland
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10. Re: Hiking Advice for North Conway

Oh, and thanks

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