|The summit of Mt Chocorua, New Hampshire|
Mt Chocorua is a bald, 3,490ft summit with commanding views of the Mt Washington Valley, Maine and the eastern White Mountains. Its not on the 4,000-footer list, the 50 finest or 100 highest but it was one of the better views I've had in the Whites. The trail was very do-able although we did run into strong wind at the summit. Well worth the trip!
|Summit Views from the Piper Trail|
The Piper Trail was well cut for us and easy to follow. There were many different turn-offs along the trail and there are options for doing the summit in a loop. We did an out-and-back hike which ended up being 9.0 miles from the parking lot to the summit. It starts at roughly 700ft and ascends about 2,700 ft to the summit. The trail starts out on a gentle slope and gets steeper as you get closer to the summit. Fortunately, it is a straightforward ascent; most other places I've hiked in the Whites have enough of the pointless up and downs to drive you insane. The views also get better as the summit gets closer!
|Mt Chocorua from the Trailhead|
I would recommend taking crampons or micro-spikes in the winter and definitely snow shoes if it has snowed within a few days. I almost left mine in the car but I probably wouldn't have summited if I didn't bring them. Even if you don't summit, the hike is still worth it!
|I love hiking in the winter!|
...postscript: Mt Chocorua, as it turns out, is on a peak-bagging list- New Hampshire's 52 With a View. It wasn't the primary reason I hiked it, but I just had to share that!
Read. Plan. Get Out There!