logo NH Mountain Hiking

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How Do I Use This Website?
  2. What is the purpose of this website?
  3. How can I get driving directions to my mountain?
  4. Why are driving directions from Nashua, NH?
  5. How can I tell if the access road is closed?
  6. How can I get detailed hiking trail information?
  7. What is the vertical climb distance for a hike?
  8. Where do I park at the trailhead?
  9. What is a GPX file?
  10. Can I hike this mountain in winter?
  11. Can I hike this mountain in spring?
  12. What are all these mountain lists for?
  13. How can I find easier mountains to hike?
  14. I just want to go for a nature walk!
  15. Why the photo galleries?
  16. What's with the flowers?
  17. How many flowers are on your website?
  18. What is "Google Maps"?
  19. How accurate are location pins on Google Maps?
  20. What is the driving time to each mountain?
  21. What is the hiking time for each mountain?
  22. How can I find hikes where I will be staying?
  23. How can I find hikes suitable for kids?
  24. What camera do you use?
  25. Can I get a copy of one of your photos?
  26. Why more hikes on the Trailwrights than AMC list?
  27. What is the "52 With-A-View" list?
  28. What is a "bushwhack"?
  29. How can I locate specific info on your website?
  30. How many mountains are on this website?
  31. How tall are the mountains on this website?
  32. Why do you maintain this website?


 
 
How Do I Use This Website?

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What is the purpose of this website?
 
The goal of this website is to help you find a mountain to hike in New Hampshire (or nearby in Maine, Vermont or Massachusetts). If you know the mountain's name, just look it up in the alphabetic Index. If you want to find a mountain near you, try Hikes by Location.
 
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How can I get driving directions to my mountain?
 
Two ways:
 
1. On the mountain's webpage click on "directions to...". Here you will find the route, distance and time to drive to this mountain from Nashua, NH (Route 3 at the MA/NH border). Then adjust the start to begin at your house.
 
2. Or, if you have a car GPS, from the mountain's webpage click on "directions to..." and use the N-W parking coordinates.
 
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Why are driving directions from Nashua, NH?
 
Short answer: because I and many of my hiking friends start out from here.
 
Long answer: from wherever you start, once you join the drive route you can follow its directions from there; and the drive-route map gives an easy overview of where the mountain is located.
 
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How can I tell if the access road is closed?
 
Go to Access Road Closures and click on one of the hotlinks. The folks who maintain wilderness roads post status on these websites specifically for us recreational users.
 
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How can I get detailed hiking trail information?
 
On the mountain's webpage click on "directions to..." and check out the recommended Trail Guide.
 
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What is the vertical climb distance for a hike?
 
The elevation gain between trailhead and summit is a for-sure vertical climb distance (for this discussion, say 500 feet).
 
But if there is an intervening trail bump (say, 100 feet tall) that you have to go over, your total vertical is bigger, in this case 600 feet.
 
And if you descend the same route, you will go over the bump a second time, adding up to a total climb distance of 700 feet for this round-trip hike.
 
Each vertical climb distance listed on this website attempts to include all such route bumps.
 
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Where do I park at the trailhead?
 
On the mountain's webpage click on "directions to..." to find the recommended parking location.
 
Or, if you have a car GPS, from the mountain's webpage click on "directions to..." and go to the N-W coordinates.
 
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What is a GPX file?
 
A Global Positioning System (GPS) eXchange file (GPX) is a universal file format that allows hikers to share routes (trails and bushwhacks). One hiker can use her GPS to store a track and another hiker can import that track into his GPS as a route to follow, creating an amazing step-by-step, I-know-where-I-am, real-time guide.
 
If you want to download a GPX file from this website, right-click on its link (to see choices) and select the "save as" option. You can then import this GPX file onto your handheld hiking GPS unit and head out on your adventure.
 
Prudence says you still want to carry a backup map-and- compass; but a GPX-loaded GPS can be fun to follow.
 
I tried following another hiker's GPS track and found it helped me in these ways:
 
- Sometimes the hardest navigation of the whole hike is finding the trailhead (where to park): with the GPS track I knew I was parking where the hiker before me had parked.
 
- At the parking spot it is sometimes hard to tell where the trail starts (which of several paths is the one I want): with the GPS track the choice is clear.
 
- On poorly-marked trails it is sometimes difficult to tell which way to go at a junction: with the GPS track I can see which way the prior hiker went, and if I make the wrong choice it is quickly obvious I have done so.
 
- If I decide to purposefully explore a different path, I can later get back on the known route by following my now-location toward some part of the GPS track.
 
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Can I hike this mountain in winter?
 
Most NH mountains can be hiked in any season.
 
The hike may be longer if the access road is closed in winter: on the mountain's webpage click on "directions to..." and look under "Winter Accessibility".
 
The hike may be dangerous in bad weather: Pick a good-weather day and be sure you are adequately prepared.
 
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Can I hike this mountain in spring?
 
On the mountain's webpage click on "directions to..." and check the recommended Trail Guide about water crossings. Some trail water crossings are impassable in high water.
 
In NH you can usually hike whenever you want (hey, this is the "Live Free or Die" state). In VT many high-mountain trails are closed in "mud season". In ME some trails are closed in Baxter State Park in spring.
 
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What are all these mountain lists for?
 
If you hike a lot, sooner or later you will seek new mountains to visit. These lists are a great source for finding them:
 
Most hikers head first to NH's tallest mountains. The Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) created a list of 48 mountains in NH over 4000 feet tall: NH 4000-Footers.
 
If you want to venture into Maine and Vermont, there are 19 more of these tall mountains: New England 4000-Footers.
 
Bit by the bug, you may want to bag 33 more mountains to complete the New England 100 Highest.
 
Or, you may want to explore smaller NH mountains with great views. Here is a list of 52 beautiful (and easier) hikes: NH 52 With-A-View.
 
If you become hard core, there are 41 more mountains on the NH 100 Highest list.
 
...and if you should run out of new mountains to explore, there are even more suggestions here: Hike Lists.
 
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How can I find easier mountains to hike?
 
Two ways:
 
Go to the Hikes by Location page and click on a location to find hikes in that area. Easy hikes are green, moderate hikes are blue and hard hikes are red. If you then click on a specific hike, you can see photos and get more info.
 
Or you can try the 52 With-A-View list of mountains, specifically designed for easier (and beautiful) hikes.
 
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I just want to go for a nature walk!
 
If you are not into hiking uphill and you live near southern NH, here is a list of easy Nature Walks.
 
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Why the photo galleries?
 
You get to see many kinds of beauty while hiking NH's mountains. The Photo Galleries (waterfalls, animals, mushrooms, etc.) let you easily find just these photos from various hikes.
 
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What's with the flowers?
 
While hiking, the most bountiful small-sized beauty is flowers. Flowers are divided into four separate photo galleries: Wildflower, Garden Flower, Shrub and Tree. There is also a Flower Index -- if you know the flower's name and there is a photo of it, you will find it here.
 
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How many flowers are on your website?
 
Flowers are separated into these four photo galleries:
 
   #    Photo Gallery
 304   Wildflower
 283   Garden Flower
 107   Shrub
   34   Tree            
 728   TOTAL Species
 
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What is "Google Maps"?
 
"Google Maps" is a feature of the Google website that allows the creation of a customized map with pins at important locations. This feature is used to pinpoint mountain locations for many lists on this website. For an overview, see Google Maps Info.
 
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How accurate are location pins on Google Maps?
 
VERY accurate!
 
If you zoom in on a mountain in Terrain mode you will see the location pin is on the true summit.
 
If you zoom in on a nature walk in Satellite mode you will see the location pin is on the parking lot, or, if an ocean beach, on the sand.
 
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What is the driving time to each mountain?
 
For each mountain hike the driving time (listed under "directions to...") assumes driving at the speed limit under good driving conditions (weather and traffic). The time is measured from Nashua, NH.
 
If you plan to carpool, here are approximate driving times (from Route 3, Exit 1) to popular Park-and-Ride stops (hours:minutes):
  0:30 -- Route 93, Exit 11 (Hooksett)
  0:40 -- Route 93, Exit 14 (Concord)
  1:10 -- Route 93, Exit 23 (New Hampton)
  1:20 -- Route 93, Exit 24 (Ashland)
  1:40 -- Route 93, Exit 32 (Lincoln)
  2:10 -- Twin Mountain
  2:50 -- Gorham
 
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What is the hiking time for each mountain?
 
For each mountain the hiking time (listed under "directions to...") is an estimate of how long an average hiker will take to complete the hike. Add extra time to this estimate if you want to linger on top, if you hike slowly, or if trail conditions are poor.
 
The "round trip" time is a rough estimate, useful for initial hike planning (e.g., for when to get up in the morning).
 
The "one way, up to the summit" is more exact, useful for getting to the top at a specific time (e.g., for sunset).
 
For further information (e.g., hiking time for a varied route), see the recommended Trail Guide.
 
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How can I find hikes where I will be staying?
 
Go to the Hikes by Location cross-reference list. Here you will find all the mountains on this website organized by location.
 
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How can I find hikes suitable for kids?
 
Go to the Hikes for Kids cross-reference list. Here you will find those NH mountains that seem kid-friendly to me, including a difficulty rating (trail length and elevation gain).
 
You can also go to the Hikes by Location cross-reference list and check out the easiest (text color green) mountains.
 
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What camera do you use?
 
Pocket-size digital cameras are now available that produce photos of surprisingly high quality, so I have pretty much switched over to this small-size, convenient-to-carry-everywhere technology. camera Most of the time I use an Olympus XZ-2 for its superior lens and sensor (better image detail and lower-light capability), sacrificing zoom (only 4x) and pixels (only 12 M).
 
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Can I get a copy of one of your photos?
 
The photos on this website have been reduced in size and quality for quick on-screen viewing. If you want a high-quality image, please request the original photo (for free, about 3 Mbytes) via the Comment form.
 
Or, if you go to the Best Photos webpage (and some other photo gallery webpages), you can access any of these original photos by clicking on its "full size" link.
 
You may download any photo from this website for personal use.
 
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Why more hikes on the Trailwrights than AMC list?
 
Everything in civilized life is political, even the determination of what constitutes a mountain! To make it onto the AMC NH 4000-Footers list there must be at least a 200-foot drop between the mountain and all other 4000-footers (otherwise, it's just a shoulder of another mountain). This leads to the definition of 48 4000-footers in NH. For the NH Trailwrights 72 list the drop requirement is 100 feet. This leads to 72 4000-footers (the same 48 as AMC, plus 24 new ones).
 
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What is the "52 With-A-View" list?
 
NH 52 With-A-View is a list of NH mountains under 4000 feet that have both a good view and a trail, as compiled by the "Over the Hill Hikers" of Sandwich, NH. There are 48 NH mountains on the AMC NH 4000-Footers list. The NH 52 With-A-View list adds just enough more mountains to make a nice round "100." (This list is different from the NH 100 Highest list which just measures height and therefore includes mountains without a view, without a trail, or both.)
 
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What is a "bushwhack"?
 
A "bushwhack" is a hike where you have to find your way at least part of the time through woods without a trail. Since someone else has not cleared a path for you, the bushes may "whack" you as you make your way through them, hence the cute name. You need to be competent navigating with map and compass and preferably be with a group before attempting a bushwhack. To visit all the mountains on the NH 100 Highest list, you will need to learn the skill of bushwhacking.
 
For more information about bushwhacking, see the magazine article: Those Crazy Bushwhackers.
 
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How can I locate specific info on your website?
 
Type in a word(s) in the "Find" box on the bottom of the Home page. The resulting list will give links to every page on this website which includes that word(s). For instance, if you type in "jay" you will find every webpage that talks about the Gray Jay, Jay Peak (in Vermont), or a hiker named Jay.
 
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How many mountains are on this website?
 
The lists of mountains on this website have some overlap. For instance, Mt. Shaw is on three lists: NH 52 With-A-View, NH 200 Highest and Ossipee Range. So, to find out how many different mountains are here (with photos!), they can be added up by the number of unique mountains per list like this:
 
  #    Mountain List    
 48   NH 4000-Footers
 55   NH 52 With-A-View (with 3 doubles)
 39   NH Little Mountains (with 5 doubles)
 25   NH Trailwrights 72
   9   New England 100 Highest (in NH)
 35   NH 100 Highest
 57   NH 3000-Footers
 20   NH 200 Highest
 18   NH 300 Highest
 10   Belknap Range
   7   Ossipee Range
313   Listless Peaks (in NH)
636   TOTAL in NH
 
 19   New England 4000-Footers
 22   New England 100 Highest (outside NH)
 21   New England 50 Finest (outside NH)
188   Listless Peaks (outside NH)
250   TOTAL outside NH
 
886   TOTAL mountains on this website
 

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How tall are the mountains on this website?
 
The shortest mountain on this website is Bungalow Hill, which is 108 feet tall. It is located right on the ocean edge of Massachusetts.
 
The tallest mountain on this website is Mount Washington, which is 6288 feet tall. It is located in the center of the White Mountains of New Hampshire.
 
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Why do you maintain this website?
 
I enjoy collecting, creating, photographing, writing, hiking, and building something useful to others. This website lets me do all of these (smile).
 
If you should see an error on this website or imagine a way in which it could be improved, please send me a Comment.
 
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NH Mountain Hiking