View Full Version : Hitchcock Flume from Mt. Willard Trail

09-07-2009, 10:05 PM

New to the forum. My wife and I climbed the Mt. Willard Trail this past weekend and had a great time. We looked for the Hitchcock Flume Spur Trail which is published to be off the main trail near the summit. My wife and I looked for this spur for 30 minutes and just could not find it. Most everything I have read that references it is pretty old, at least 4 or 5 years old, including my AMC WM trail guide which is the 27th edition. I took a quick peek in the 28th edition at EMS and the Mt. Willard Trail section has no mention of the Hitchcock Flume Spur and the maps included omit this spur too. Does anyone have any information on this? Have they let it grow out so that it is no longer easily found? I can't find any info as to why AMC amended this in their latest edition. Any info would be appreciated as I left Willard feeling like I missed something that I shouldn't have.


09-09-2009, 04:47 PM
Hi Karl!

Welcome to the forum!

The path is still there. Here are two links you may find helpful:


Here is a picture taken during the winter. You can notice its relative proxmity to the road below:


There is another flume once known as Butterwort Flume along the same freshet. Not sure where it is. But it must be near some butterwort colony I suppose.

Good hikin'!

Snow Miser
09-09-2009, 08:25 PM
Welcome Karl. This is a great place to ask for information on hiking, etc. There are plenty of very friendly fellow hikers with a lot of experience and knowledge.

If you took photos of your recent hike, or even if you didn't, you may want to write a trail report. They're always nice to read.:)

09-10-2009, 05:59 PM
Hi there,

Thanks for the welcome. I have actually looked at these website regarding the Hitchcock Flume and used them to plan my trip. The only problem with them is that they are pretty old. I think the Hike NE report is from 1998. So there has been plenty of time for the spur to grow in and I can't find any new literature regarding it. Again, the 27th edition of the AMC guide mentions it, but the 28th edition does not...Oh well. I guess I will never know. It is frustrating because I went through the area where it should be with a fine toothed comb...and still couldn't find it. I was hoping someone else had also looked for it recently.


09-10-2009, 08:55 PM
Hi Karl,
Yes the original hike date on the Hike NE report was 1998, however, it was updated as accurate in Ocotber of 2008.

This inquiry (which included the photo) was from 9/2008. As one replier notes, the spur is getting more difficult to find. That is true in many cases of old trail entrances in the Whites. Sometimes we "mow the lawn" by running a zig-zag pattern several feet off the trail. Other times you can leave one person on the trail while another shadows them parallel but 10-15 feet off the trail. Its worked in the past. At least you know what side of the trail its off of!


Good luch if you go back again! Don't give up!

09-11-2009, 08:19 AM
We've tried to find Hitchcock Flume at least 3 times and have given up each time. The spur path seems easy enough to find but it disappears quickly once you get into the woods. Seeing the info here I'm sure we headed in the right way - just gave up too soon. Next time we'll press on. Thanks for the pointers Scott. And welcome to the forum Karl. Thanks for bringing this topic up!

09-11-2009, 03:18 PM
I know exactly where you are talking about. We did go off to what looked like a beginning of a spur trail and it soon just disappeared into brush and trees. We could not follow much past 20-30ft. I just wrote it off as a water runoff location for the trail. If I remember right, the beginning of it was a bit gravelly. Man, it is so frustrating to be there and not be able to locate and follow this trail. Thanks for all the replies. It makes me feel better that I am not going crazy.

Does anyone know how to request this trail to be marked and maintained? If it was marked and could be followed, I?m sure it would get a lot of foot traffic since Willard is pretty popular. I know that volunteers do most trail maintenance and I would assume that the AMC has a maintenance schedule setup. By putting this one into the mix probably wouldn?t take much time, especially on the day they work on Willard. Does anyone have any insight on this?