View Full Version : "easiest" 4000-footer..?

07-31-2008, 07:49 AM
Hey there --

My husband's going out of town again soon, but I don't want to wait until he returns to go hiking again!

This means I need to bring Sage, my 3 year old, on our next peakbagging adventure.

I will need to carry her most (if not all) of the way -- plus, I always carry a large pack with emergency gear, clothes, etc. for myself and for Alex.

So, for my sake, what do you think is the easiest 4000-er? Pretend you're carrying a 20 pound pack and a 30 pound child....

Any trails that are not too steep and not too terrible rocky?

Or do I just have to bite the bullet and wait more weeks than I want to before we set out again? :(

Longer and not-so-steep works better for us than shorter and steeper.

07-31-2008, 08:12 AM
I remember Jackson being quite easy. But I did go in the winter, so I don't know how rocky it is. There a friendly little bird at the top that followed me around too. If he's still around, your daughter would love him. :)

I think it's only a 5 mile round trip, with some lovely little brooks on the way.

rockin rex
07-31-2008, 08:43 AM
My guess would be Mt. Tom coming up from 302 on the Avalon / A-Z trail would be your easiest. This could be done with a kid in the pack and the ability to carry what you need. The trail is not difficult but the mileage might be higher than what you are looking for. I have seen many families do this hike. Mount Tom has some nice views also.

07-31-2008, 09:01 AM
Tecumseh, Hale, and Waumbek are in my opinion the easiest ones to knock off. None of them have good views though.

07-31-2008, 12:58 PM
Yeah, I was going to suggest Tecumseh too, but you can't see much. Tom is the same way. Easy, but fairly pointless. Jackson has a decent view, and is an easy climb.

Although, cute little birdies like this fella I met on Tom earlier this year almost make it worth it.

07-31-2008, 01:55 PM
Thanks, folks. We've already done Tecumseh. I guess we'll choose between Tom, Jackson or Waumbek.

07-31-2008, 08:04 PM
Between those three, I would pick Waumbek or Tom. Waumbek has about the same views as Tecumseh. Tom has at least some possibility for a view if the weather is amenable.

Waumbek was our first 4000-footer in NH. We did see a moose!!

Tom is a fine hike. You've got milestones to aim for every couple miles, which is probably good when you're traveling with kids.

We've seen Gray Jays while hiking both of these (not always on the summit - for example, during the walk to Waumbek, we ran into the Gray Jays on Mt Starr King). They are the most daring birds I've ever seen when it comes to getting food from humans.

Jackson... I can't explain it, I know it's not rational, but I don't like this trail. I've done it in summer and winter. Maybe I need a nice crisp autumn day with no bugs, no humidity. Maybe then I would like it.

Just my 2cents!

07-31-2008, 08:48 PM
Considering what you are carrying (valuable cargo!) I would rule out Jackson, I really enjoy, but I didn't descend the ledges near the top carrying what you will be. I also would vote for Tom, then Hale. Have fun!

07-31-2008, 09:38 PM
Osceola is also a fairly easy hike and if you are ambitious enough, you can get two peaks in one day. I remember the hike being very graduale mostly, though we did the descent in the rain.

07-31-2008, 10:12 PM
the ledges near the top

Ledges? Wow, we must have had a lot of snow when I went - I don't remember any ledges at all. Sure hope we have a doozy of a winter like that again. :)

They are the most daring birds I've ever seen when it comes to getting food from humans.

Aren't they neat? I've encountered them on Tom, Field, and Jackson, but only in winter. I suppose they've more to eat in summer and so aren't as desperate.

Waumbek was our first 4000-footer in NH.

In NH? Have you done them elsewhere, then? I've only done one, Katahdin in Maine.

Anyway, Trish, have fun whichever you decide. :)

And of course, if you decide you don't want to tackle a 4k mountain with a kid (can't blame you there. :)) you could always try Mount Major (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Major) on Route 11. It's a very easy climb and has a good view of Lake Winnipesaukee.

08-01-2008, 06:53 AM
Thanks again, folks. Sage likes views from the top, and she's a pretty good rock scrambler. I guess if we choose Jackson, I'll ask her to walk herself over the rocky bits and spot her on the ledges.

I'm shying away from Tom because Alex and I really want to knock of three peaks at once when we do Tom (with Field and Willey). I can't carry Sage for three peaks, that's just too much for me.

Same with Osceola. When we do that one, we want to do both.

So we'll have to decide between Waumbek and Jackson.

Thanks again for all your input! I appreciate the advice!

08-01-2008, 06:56 AM
Keep us posted on which you do and how it went.

KD Talbot
08-01-2008, 07:40 PM
My vote would be for Mount Pierce up the Crawford Path. Easy hiking, incredible views, no rock scrambles. A 3 year old could make this without being carried, and no risk of injury on the rock scrambles.

Forecast for thunderstorms tomorrow afternoon, start early, or put it off for another day!


08-02-2008, 07:25 AM
Tom has decent views, over some scrub. Much better than Waumbek (Starr King supposedly has some, but it was foggy when I went up there) or Field. It's pretty easy, except there are at least two rather steep sections, which luckily are not very long. One of them is right after the split with Avalon and A-Z -- it goes up, down through a ravine and back up the other side. The other is further along, right before you come up to the Willey Range Trail. I would support Kevin's opinion on Pierce. I'm taking my two (6 + 8) to Jackson for my 48 finish in September, and if time permits this year, Pierce will likely be #2 (and maybe Ike for #3!)

View to the Pemi:
http://inlinethumb62.webshots.com/42749/2736696170097994563S500x500Q85.jpg (http://outdoors.webshots.com/photo/2736696170097994563aMApwL)

View toward Washington:
http://inlinethumb42.webshots.com/42793/2491783620097994563S500x500Q85.jpg (http://outdoors.webshots.com/photo/2491783620097994563ewPMSy)


08-03-2008, 06:50 AM
KD, sounds good but we've already done Pierce. Great hike, I agree with you wholeheartedly. We went up to Eisenhower via Edmands and then came down Pierce via Crawford.

Tim, thanks for your detailed description of Tom. That was very helpful. Maybe we'll do that one, and just put of Field and Willey for another day when I'm not carrying Sage..?

My husband is gone is NEXT weekend. We weren't planning on hiking this weekend, and then we wouldn't be able to next weekend (because of my husband), so that would've meant three weeks between hikes.

HOWEVER, Alex and I DID get out yesterday. Trip report to follow on the Osceolas.

So the three of us may still knock off another 4000 footer together next week....but now if we don't, I won't mind as much (since Alex and I got out yesterday).

Wow, that was long and rambling! Sorry, haven't had the coffee yet.

08-03-2008, 06:57 AM
And Tim -- congrats on finishing your 48 in September!!! :D

08-03-2008, 04:40 PM
And Tim -- congrats on finishing your 48 in September!!! :D

The game is not over yet. It is the ninth inning, I guess.