Liberty + Flume
Ever upwards on the luge
PeaksMount Liberty (4,459 ft), Mount Flume (4,328 ft)
TrailheadFlume Visitors Center
TrailsWhitehouse, Liberty Springs, Franconia Ridge
Total Distance10.24 miles, 5,191ft elevation gain
TimeStart: 9:04am, 5:35 Round Trip
WeatherCold and overcast, but not too windy.
Trail ConditionsStable monorail up to Liberty, semi-loose snow between Liberty and Flume
GearMicrospikes + Snowshoes
Partners in CrimeCody and Rye
Pretty straightforward hike up to Liberty and Flume. The trail was stable enough to bareboot it for a few miles before we got to the luge trail where many chose to sled rather than hike down, creating a pretty steep slope that required traction. The first 2 miles the trail gently winds up through the forest to the tranquil sound of snowmobiles ripping alongside the interstate (meh), but then you forget about that as the 2 mile climb straight up begins. In the winter, this is especially monotonous as you’re literally hiking up a smoothed luge, rather than steps.
We had a bit of a view atop Liberty, but we made haste before the sweat could cool us in the light breeze. Between Liberty and Flume I could tell some progress on the blowdowns had been made since my last trip up there (December 2017), but it was still basically wading through pokey evergreen branches the whole way. The trail was also less trafficked and so we put on our snowshoes to aid in that effort. We were pretty annoyed by all the ducking and getting poked the time we reached Flume, though perhaps it was just thinking of having to turn around and do the whole thing again.
The way back to Liberty felt considerably less annoying, and we made great time back down to the car. We opted to run down the luge in our snowshoes rather than slide.
You May Also Enjoy
Kinsmen + Cannon Balls
Chewed up and spat out by the forest
This was a rough day in the Whites. We had plans in the area around 7pm and so wanted to fill our day with time in the mountains, when we probably would have been happier doing something shorter. Alas, we...Read more
Ladies' Weekend Mount Jackson
A frigid late start blue bird quickie
We really know how to pick ‘em: Ladies’ Weekend at the base of the Presidentials fell on the windiest day recorded atop Mount Washington in the last decade - 148 mph according to the Mount Washington Observatory. Plus, I had...Read more
Showing the best of winter Whites to new pals
It’s always fun bringing friends up to mountains we love. This time, we drove up with our pal, Will and his roommate, Blaine to hike a pretty ambitious peak: Mount Madison, the 5th tallest in New Hampshire. Will had done...Read more