Nothing Beats The View: Lakes Region Hikes, NH
Details of three great hikes in the Lakes Region, NH
Cool crisp air and the crunching of leaves are heaven to hikers in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire, but the views are the true reward. Three hikes in the Lakes Region that deliver spectacular views year round are Mt. Major, Belknap Mountain and Red Hill. Most of the popular 1.7-mile Mt. Major climb is fairly easy, elevating gently as it follows old logging roads. However, this trail ends with a sting -- a very steep climb to the summit where the land is wide and flat and the payoff is a panoramic view of the Lakes Region. From here hikers see the view of Lake Winnepausaukee that photographers have made famous. The trail is located on Route 11 between Alton and Weirs Beach. The view from the Belknap Mountain trail is breathtaking and the ascent can be challenging with four trails of varying difficulty. The steepest is the Green Trail while the most scenic is the White Trail. All the trails are accessible from Belknap Mountain Road from Gilford Village. Spring and fall climbs on clear days open the view to the snow-capped Mt. Washington in the distance. The flat ridge of Red Hill offers incredible views of Lake Winnepausaukee and Squam Lake. There are two ways up to the summit. The toughest is an approximately 3-mile hike that has some tricky climbs, but offers the added bonus of a view from Eagle’s Cliff. Don’t attempt this hike unless you have experience. The easier route -- though still challenging -- is a little over 1.5 miles and follows a steep roadbed.