NH – Family Hikes

Easy to Moderate Family Hikes

Kancamagus Highway
Sabbaday Falls – easy
  • 18 miles from LS
  • 1.2 miles RT
  • At the beginning of the Sabbaday Brook Trail to the Tripyramids is popular Sabbaday Falls, accessed via an easy 15-minute walk on an evenly graded and gravel surfaced trail from a paved parking lot.

Champney and Pitcher Falls
  • On the trail to Mt. Chocorua – moderate
  • 23 miles from LS
  • 3.4. miles RT
  • Champney and Pitcher Falls are two waterfalls flowing from the side of Mt. Chocorua. They have the unique quality of being located right beside each other, on two converging brooks. Champney Falls, an average series of little cascades, with its many drops and pools, invites splashing on a hot day. Pitcher Falls, set back in a gorge, is less accessible, but more interesting.

Allen’s Ledge on the (UNH) Mt. Hedgehog Trail – moderate
  • 20 miles from LS
  • 2.2 miles RT
  • A moderate climb delivers a good viewpoint on this very nice ledge. Going counter-clockwise, starting with the west loop, it’s 1.1 miles to Allen’s Ledge (another 0.8 miles to the summit of Hedgehog). Then retrace your steps to go back rather than continuing on the loop.

Franconia Notch
Mt. Pemigewasset
  • Easy to moderate, one of the first to do when the kids are ready
  • 6 miles from LS
  • Park at the top end (north) of the Flume Parking lot by the bike trail
  • 3.6 miles RT -- moderate
  • Good views

Bald Mountain and Artist's Bluff
  • A the top of the Notch – easy – great starter hike with great view
  • 13 miles from LS
  • The 1.5 mile loop begins in the parking area across Route 18 from the Peabody Base Area. After .25 mile, a short, steep path diverges left for .1 mile to the open summit of Bald Mountain. The main trail continues on from the junction and bears right, up and across the low ridge. A short, unmarked path diverges left to the open top of Artists Bluff. The main trail continues down to Route 18 near Echo Lake.

The Flume
  • Fee in season, free out of season, you can just walk it, snowshoe it, etc. – easy
  • 6 miles from LS
  • 2-mile loop (currently has Covid restrictions and reservations)
Basin Cascades -- The Basin – easy
  • 8 miles from LS
  • 2.2 miles RT
  • The Basin is one of Franconia Notch State Park's most popular tourist attractions. On a summer weekend, swarms of visitors walk its paved paths to see the circular bowl and curved waterfall on the Pemigewasset River known as The Basin. Plenty of other exciting water features await around it. Hikers have the opportunity to venture beyond the paved walkways and follow the delightful Cascade Brook to Rocky Glen Falls.

Lonesome Lake and Lonesome Lake AMC Hut – moderate
  • 14 miles from LS if you go up to the top of the notch to park at Lafayette Place
  • 3.2 miles out-and-back with loop – moderate
  • Lonesome Lake is one of the state's most popular and scenic mountain ponds. A loop trail around the lake shows you tranquil waters, mountain vistas, docks and beaches, and dark bogs.
  • Trailhead is located on Rt. 93, at the always crowded Lafayette Place Campground. There are parking areas on both sides of the highway. If you parked on the east side of the highway (Falling Waters Trail/Old Bridal Path Parking), walk through the underpass to the other side of the highway.

Waterville Valley
Waterville Cascades – Cascade Path
  • 27 miles from LS
  • 3.4 miles out-and-back with loop
  • These picturesque cascades in the quaint town of Waterville Valley make for one of the most enjoyable and rewarding waterfall hikes in New Hampshire. After an easy walk in the woods, a loop encircles the cascades, passing numerous drops, fans, rapids, and pools in Cascade Brook. Start at the ski chairlift parking lot. The only trail to avoid is the Greeley Ledges, which is rocky and steep in places.

Pine Flats/Yellow Jacket/Smarts Brook (or Tri-Town) Loop
  • 20 miles from LS on RT. 49
  • 3.7 mile loop
  • Easy stroll with a gorge, a brook, pretty woods, and a swimming hole on Smarts Brook Trail.

Crawford Notch
Mt. Willard – easy to moderate, one of the first to do when the kids are ready
  • 32 miles from LS
  • 3.2 miles RT – easy
  • Although dwarfed by the high mountains all around it, Mt. Willard's south cliff makes seem an impressive peak to travelers on Rt. 302. Mt. Willard's perfect position is what gives it such an incredible view. Its cliff-top summit yields a view looking straight through the southern part of Crawford Notch.

Elephant Head – a fun viewpoint, not really a hike
  • 32 miles from LS
  • .6 miles RT
  • Elephant Head is a rock formation at the northern end of Crawford Notch. Seen from the north, the rock assumes the shape of an elephant's head embedded in the hillside. There is a short hiking trail leading to the top of the rock, from which you see a wide vista of the Crawford Notch "gateway" region. The hike starts on the Webster-Jackson Trail. Note: the elephant’s "head" is at road level – don’t look up for it.

Arethusa Falls (highest waterfall in NH) – a favorite of ours – moderate
  • 38 miles from LS
  • 3.1 miles RT
  • Arethusa Falls is New Hampshire's tallest single drop waterfall, and also one of the most scenic. As you stand in its dominating presence, dwarfed by the immense sheet of crashing white, a sense of awe will overcome you.

Stinson Mountain – moderate
  • 27 miles from LS
  • 3.6 miles RT -- moderate
  • At the southern tip of the White Mountain National Forest stands Stinson Mountain, once the site of a fire tower. Part of an unnamed range of low, rolling mountains, it is just under 3000 feet in elevation and has a rocky summit with directional views to the south

Kinsman Notch
Lost River Gorge (fee) – easy
  • 8 miles from LS
  • The Lost River Gorge & Boulder Caves, located in New Hampshire’s Kinsman Notch in the White Mountains, is a land of spectacular beauty forged by the powerful forces of water, wind, weather, and time. The fun route consists of caves and boardwalks. In addition, there are a couple of nature walks.

Bald Peak – moderate
  • 19 miles from LS
  • 4.6 miles RT
  • The ledgy knob of Bald Peak on the west flank of North Kinsman, accessed by the Mount Kinsman Trail and a spur path; 4.6 miles round trip with 1450 ft. of elevation gain.

Bethlehem/Twin Mountain
Zealand Falls and Zealand Hut – moderate, short steep section to hut
  • 29 miles from LS
  • 5.4 miles RT
  • Zealand Falls is set in the quiet and picturesque lower regions of the White Mountains. Beautiful bogs along the trail and then Zealand Falls and Zealand hut.

Middle and North Sugarloaf – moderate
  • 27 miles from LS (on Zealand Road before the Zealand parking lot)
  • 3.4 miles RT
  • Middle Sugarloaf in particular commands one of the finest views for its small size in the White Mountains. The trail forks in the gap between the two mountains. Visit North Sugarloaf first (turn right).

Jefferson, NH
Pondicherry Wildlife Refuge – easy
  • 34 miles from LS but worth it!
  • Nestled beneath the mountains north of the Presidential Range, Pondicherry Wildlife Refuge has often been called one of the "crown jewels" of New Hampshire’s landscape, and visitors to the site will easily understand why. The ponds, wetlands, and forests of this refuge support a wide variety of significant ecological features.

North Haverhill
Windy Ridge Orchard
  • Blueberries, apples, pumpkins, christmas trees, nature walk
  • 21 miles from LS
  • Open daily

Around Lincoln
Cross-country trails
  • There are cross-country trails on the east end of Loon, about a mile east of the Mountain Club on Loon. The first part is along the river, very pleasant. You can make various loops.

The granite "beach" on the Pemi.
  • Walk down to Cooper Memorial bridge and pick up the J.E. Henry trail. Hang out and swim. You can also continue on the J.E. Henry trail, which merges with South Peak Road to Loon, and turn it into a 4-miles loop.

  • RT- round trip
  • OW - one way
  • LS – Lincoln Station