Savoring Monadnock – The Pumpelly Trail

Mt. Monadnock from the south

Mt. Monadnock from the south

At 4.4 miles one way, the Pumpelly Trail is the longest approach to Mt. Monadnock.  But in my experience, it’s the most enjoyable, allowing you to savor its long, gradual ascent and frequent vistas.  Hiking it with my daughter on an amazing day in October made it pretty much unbeatable.

Great views start at about 2 miles and continue to the summit

Great views start at about 2 miles and continue to the summit

When you think about it, an 8-mile hike isn’t so much and this trail has very few of the steep scrambles required in the shorter, more direct ascents.  We actually left a car at the state park’s main parking lot so we could make a shorter descent but…

Descending the Red Spot Trail

Descending on the Red Spot Trail

…in many ways the descent on the Red Spot and White Dot Trails was far less interesting.  Next time I’ll probably do the Pumpelly both ways.  After a mile or so ramble through the woods, there’s a brief steep climb, followed by a wonderful hike along a rolling ridge towards the summit.  I’ll let the photos do the talking from here.IMG_2187 IMG_2223 IMG_2249 IMG_2208 IMG_2214 IMG_2217 IMG_2252The glacier-scoured rocks are such fun to hike!

Love these rocks!

Love these rocks!

Time for a snooze

Time for a break

What goes up...

What goes up…

All in all, it was a fabulous hike on a fabulous day with great company – a combination that’s pretty darn impossible to beat!

A sunset on the way home.  NH color at it's best!

A sunset on the way home. NH color at it’s best!

Happy travels!

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2 responses to “Savoring Monadnock – The Pumpelly Trail

    • I once thought 4 miles was a terribly long hike but now would much prefer the longer but more leisurely stroll over a short steep one. This trail made climbing the mountain more like a walk in the woods than a strenuous hike. Then again, reading your informative blog let’s me know that you get out a lot, spry or not, which is undoubtedly what it’s all about, isn’t it?

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