View Full Version : Camping advice

07-21-2008, 04:26 PM
Hello, my friend and I are planning a 3 day 2 night backpacking trip to the white mountains, presidential range. This is our plan:

Day 1:

Start: AMC Highland Center (Crawford Notch) to Mt. Jackson via Webster Jackson Trail
Mt. Jackson to Mt. Pierce via Webster Cliff trail
Mt. Pierce to Mt. Eisenhower via Crawford Path and Mt. Eisenhower loop
Mt. Eisenhower to Mt. Franklin via Crawford Path
End: Mt. Franklin to Mt. Monroe via Crawford Path and Mt. Monroe Loop

Distance: 9.2 miles
Elevation gain: 4, 350 ft
Book Time: 6:45

Day 2:

Start: Mt. Monroe to Mt. Washington via Crawford Path
Mt. Washington to Mt. Clay via Gulfside Trail
Mt. Clay to Mt. Jefferson via Gulfside Trail
End: Mt. Jefferson to Mt. Adams via Gulfside Trail

Distance: 7.4 miles
Elevation gain: 4, 250 ft
Book Time: 5:50

Day 3:

Start: Ascend Mt. Madison via Gulfside trail/ Osgood Trail
End: Mt. Madison to Appalachia via Watson Path followed by Valley Way

Distance: 4.7 miles
Elevation gain 550ft
Book Time: 3:05

What do you guys think?

We want to setup camp ourselves because using the huts is just too expensive. We have a tent, sleeping bags, cookware, etc. The only thing we're lacking is an exact location. Ideally we would like to camp as close as possible to the trails we finish each day. Can you please recommend any camping spots or for that matter any camping advice is greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Bill O
07-21-2008, 07:53 PM
Sounds like a good hike.

The problem is, there is no camping above tree line in the White Mountains. And anything below tree line is in dense forests on steep slopes. It looks like you have the White Mountain Guide so you can read all about the restrictions.

Can you work in the Hermit Lake shelters or some other official tent/camping sites?

I agree that the huts are rather expensive, but its what the market can bear. Demand outweighs supply.

KD Talbot
07-21-2008, 08:44 PM
Bill's right, no camping above tree-line in the Whites. That said, the way I would break this trip up would be up Jackson and over to Nauman Tentsite 1st night. Next day is the big day. Up to Washington, then across to Adams where you could camp at The Perch, a shelter, though it is a bit of a descent to reach, then a climb back up the next day. Or you could make a mad push for Valley Way Tent-sites. Long haul with full gear. At that point, you might as well go all the way to Appalachia. There is a fee at the tent-sites, but not bad.


07-22-2008, 06:41 AM
I think the tent sites are $8 a person. When we did the pemi loop we stayed at the tent sites. They can feel crowded but they had water close by and an outhouse so you don't have to dig holes to bury your business. The only downside is the tent sites are a bit off of the trail and generally you have to hike back up in the morning but it really doesn't add much time to your hike. Also bring some cord with you to hang your food.

07-22-2008, 11:37 AM
The Itinerary looks very doable, and I wish you a good hike.

A bit more on camping. I've attached the list of backcountry rules below. The trails are patrolled by ridge runners, but it is more important to understand the ethics behind the rules.

The 'barren land' above treeline on the Presidential Range is truly a special, rare and often unique environment. When the glaciers receeded thousands of years ago, they left behind plants and ecosystems that are truly arctic in nature. To find similar communities, you would have to drive about 800 to 1500 miles north, and even then some of the plants on the range are found nowhere else on earth.

As the area sees such tremendous use, and since the landscape is in such limited quantity, it is important to minimize your impact. Many of us feel guilty merely straying from the trails, and if we do, we keep to the rocks. Camping therefore would cause great destruction to the area, and is ruled by the doccument below.


Enjoy your hike!!!