Local Hiking Trails

the white mountains offer a ton of hiking trails 

Take a Day Hike or Plan for a Longer Trip | Easy to Difficult Hikes Abound

The White Mountain National Forest and the surrounding state parks are known across New England for offering up exceptional hiking trails.  Volunteers and state agencies ensure well maintained & marked trails as well as waypoints and shelters along the way.  

You can hike to the summit of Mount Washington or take a family stroll to a local waterfall.  Pinkham Notch has many options and the surrounding Mount Washington Valley offers up so many more.  

Here are some of our favorite easy quick hikes around our region.  If you are looking for a more extensive day hike or overnight trip we suggest you research your trip and check out sites like Northeast Hikes, The Appalachian Mountain Club or other local resources in our area.  

Wildcat Mountain:

  • Location:  Wildcat Mountain
  • Distance: 4.7 miles (or 8.4 miles if you hike Wildcat A - E)
  • Difficulty:  Moderate-Difficult

Wildcat has 5 summits: A, B, C, D and E. The summit of Wildcat Ski Area is D. Only A and D are considered part of New Hampshire's 4,000 Footers. The 4062 ft summit of Wildcat D offers spectacular views of Mount Washington and the Presidential Range and stop by the observation deck for an even grander vantage point. Hikers wishing to summit Wildcat D only (4.7 miles) can begin To hike the base of Wildcat Ski Area and begin their assent on the designated hiking trail, the Polecat Trails. To hike the entire Wildcat Ridge (A-R) (8.4 miles) hikers most commonly set out from Pinkham Notch Visitor Center on the Lost Pond Trail, which runs approximately one mile before meeting the Wildcat Ridge Trail. From that junction, hikers experience a steep climb but great views from open ledges on the trail, which makes its way to each of the Wildcat peaks, including the D Peak.

Thompson Falls:

  • Location:  Wildcat Mountain
  • Distance: 0.8 miles
  • Time: 30 minutes 
  • Difficulty:  Easy

Starting at the Wildcat Ski Area parking lot, cross the bridge on the left side of the building. Turn left and follow the self-guided nature trail to the service road. After crossing the road, walk along the side of Thompson Brook to the falls; this series of cascades will be on your left. The trail ends at the top of the third cascade.

Glen Ellis Falls:

  • Location: Pinkham Notch
  • Distance: 0.3 miles
  • Time: 20 minutes  
  • Difficulty: Easy 
  • Directions:  Park in the Glen Ellis Falls parking area on the west side of Rt. 16.

Go through the tunnel under Rt. 16 and down the stone walkway and stairs constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930’s. After passing several overlooks, you will reach the falls, which drop 66 ft. Please be aware – you will climb down more than 100 rock steps to the base of the falls. 

Lost Pond:

  • Location:  Pinkham Notch
  • Distance:  1 mile
  • Time:  30 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy:  

This short walk takes you past beaver ponds along a mountain stream and through the forest to excellent views of Mount Washington. Park at the AMC Pinkham Notch Visitor Center lot. Cross Rt. 16 and look for the sign for the Lost Pond Trail. After crossing a small bridge near the beaver pond, the trail curves to the right and climbs gently uphill. Continue until you see the pond on your right and be sure to look for signs of beaver and other wildlife. You may even see a moose swimming in the pond! 

Diana's Bath

  • Location: North Conway
  • Distance: 1 mile
  • Time: 40 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Directions: Parking lot is located off West Side Road, Bartlett/North Conway  
    • Trail Head:  West Side Road, Bartlett, NH 03812

Easy, relatively flat walk to beautiful rocky cascades. During the summer it is a great place for all ages to enjoy the tranquility of nature, cascading falls and pools in the brook.

Echo Lake State Park / Cathedral Ledge 

  • Location:  North Conway
  • Distance:  1 or 2.5 Miles 
  • Time:  45 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy - Intermediate
  • Directions:  Located off West Side Road  Look for easy to spot signs for Echo Lake State Park 
    • 60 Echo Lake Road, Conway NH 03818 (located off from West Side Road)

There is an easy 1 mile hiking trail around Echo Lake. There is also a trail system leading to both Cathedral and Whitehorse Ledges. From the North Side of Echo Lake you can take the Bryce Hiking Path 1.2 miles to the top of Cathedral Ledge.

There is also a 1 mile auto road off from West Side Road (Cathedral Ledge Road) which leads to Cathedral Ledge. A short walk is required to reach the fenced in vista area. Spectacular views of the surrounding area are possible from the top of Cathedral Ledge.) During the summer it is not uncommon to see groups of climbers on the face.