1 Mount Cardigan
Mount Cardigan (3,155 ft) is a popular mountain in western New Hampshire. The trails to the treeless summit are quite short – although steep – and because it’s a monadnock (lone-standing mountain) you have beautiful 360-degree views of the surrounding mountain ranges and valleys.
2 Black Mountain
Located in western New Hampshire, Black Mountain (2,830 ft) is a relatively unknown mountain. It is, however, well-worth climbing. The Chippewa Trail is a very scenic trail that runs past a beaver stream and then starts to climb straight to the summit. It’s short, but steep, and the views from the summit include Mount Moosilauke, the Kinsmans and the rest of the White Mountains.
3 Mount Monadnock
One of the world’s most climbed mountains, Mount Monadnock (3,165 ft) is a solitary mountain in the south of the state. Its bald rocky summit offers views towards all directions. The trail to the summit is steep and often very busy.
4 Mount Washington
Mount Washington (6,288 ft) is the tallest mountain in New Hampshire and in all of New England. It is a notoriously dangerous mountain – the weather can change dramatically within minutes – and it is advised to be prepared when tackling this mountain. The Ammonoosuc Trail is the most straightforward route to its summit, where you literally stand on top of the northeastern United States.
5 Mount Lafayette
The trailhead to Mount Lafayette’s summit (5,249 ft) begins at a parking lot off the interstate through the White Mountains. It’s rare that a mountain of this size is so easily accessed. You can combine your climb of Lafayette with other nearby summits, such as Lincoln, Liberty and Flume, to create the ultimate day hike.
6 Mount Moosilauke
Mount Moosilauke (4,802 ft) lies in the western White Mountains and is popular among students at Dartmouth College in Hanover. The university owns the mountain, its trails and the lodge at the base. The Gorge Brook Trail, Old Carriage Road and Snapper Trail make for an excellent loop. It takes a full afternoon to get to the summit and back down.
7 Mount Chocorua
Mount Chocorua (3,475 ft) is one of the White Mountains’ most popular mountains. The trail to the summit begins at the superb Kancamagus Highway and leads past waterfalls and beautiful lookout points towards the sharp peak, which also offers magnificent views.
8 Mount Major
Mount Major (1,786 ft) is not that tall a mountain, but its brilliant location makes it worth the hike. It is located near Lake Winnipesaukee and makes for a great mountain to climb with a family. The summit views include Lake Winnipesaukee and the White Mountains in the background.
9 Baldface Mountain Loop
This loop trail runs over the two bald mountain peaks that make up Baldface Mountain (3,547 ft and 3,606 ft). Highlights of this splendid circular hike include stream crossings, alpine vegetation and absolutely phenomenal summit and ridge views. See photo of Baldface Mountain at top of post.
10 Mount Willey
Mount Willey (4,285 ft) is located close to Crawford Notch. The hike up to the summit is moderate and the trail is well-kept. At the top you can enjoy views of the southern Presidential Range, including Jackson and Eisenhower, and the Webster Cliffs.