Explore the most popular river trails in Mount Washington State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Amazing trail but harder than expected. The mileage I believe is wrong on here, it's just 4.6mi (but don't under estimate it). I completed it to the summit in 2 hours 56 minutes but we were going much faster than everyone else and were absolutely exhausted by the time we summited. Took the Cog down then.

The first third is a steady uphill but relatively easygoing. The 2nd third right after you cross a waterfall will kick your butt, it's probably a 50% grade just straight up boulders until you reach the lakes of the clouds hut (very very cool and nice spot to break). The last 3rd is completely above the tree line and starts off steady but gets hard towards the end at the final scramble to the top. It's not as tough as the 2nd portion though.

Overall good trail, just be prepared for any kinds of weather at the top, we were fortunate and had almost no wind, no clouds, and 60deg temps.

Fantastic loop trail. The Jewell Trail up is about as easy as it gets up there. The Ammonoosuc is rocky and slow so budget plenty of time for getting down.

Make sure if you want to summit that you start this hike early. We began at 2 PM, not realizing after long that it would be dark on the way back down. Great views.

My boys (ages 9 and 11) and I hiked this trail on 8/25, and had great weather. We actually parked in the Cog Railway parking lot (just in case we needed to take the Cog back down). Hiked Ammonoosuc Ravine up to the summit, and Jewell back down. I usually carry too much water, but this time, I anticipated being able to refill at the Lake in the Clouds hut and at the summit. The Ammonoosuc Ravine is as steep as everyone says - a tough climb to the hut. But, from the hut to the summit isn't too bad. The Jewell trail is much more gradual, and spectacularly scenic until you're back below the treeline. Took us about 10 hours roundtrip, including about 45 minutes at the top. As everyone mentioned - it is a little disappointing how crowded the summit is. Waiting 20 minutes in line to take a photo with the sign is pretty painful. But, the trail up and down, plus the views, plus the sense of accomplishment, still make this a spectacular hike. Strongly recommended.

Get to get your heart going!

Scratch that, we got to the trailhead at 2 and reached Lakes at 5:30. So it took us 3 1/2 hours to get to Lakes. The summit to Mt. Washington from Lakes is relatively easy (depending on weather)

I did this hike with my son. We stayed at Lakes that night. Left the trailhead at noon and got to Lakes at 5:30. The last third of Ammonoosuc Ravine is very, very steep for about 1-2 hours and you need to be in good shape to do it. Otherwise you're going to be very slow going. Incredible views and definitely worth the hike.

Amazing trail with lots of variety. The first third is really mellow and follows along the river. The second third is super steep, and the last third mellows it again, with gorgeous views starting halfway up the trails. Bring some cash to buy home-baked goods from lake of the clouds shelter. Did it in 3.30 round trip!

I hiked this trail on Saturday, 8/25 and had great weather. I parked my car in the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trailhead parking lot and ascended Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail to Lakes of the Clouds Hut for a quick bathroom/snack break. Then I went up Crawford Path to summit Mount Washington. I hung around at the summit for the obligatory picture with the summit sign and moved on. Then, going down, I took the Gulf Side Trail to Jewell Trail, ate a quick lunch with the presidents, and completed the descent down Jewell to the parking lot.

Altogether, it took me about 6 hours. I don’t know that the trail length on this post is correct. It seems longer than it truly is, but I would say it’s definitely longer than 9.5 mi and less than 11 mi. A friend’s gps told her it was closer to 10mi. Nonetheless, it was a great hike with good physical challenge. I saw a lot of children on the trail, along with dogs (some leashed, some not).

Ammonoosuc Ravine has awesome views of streams and waterfalls but was definitely a tough ascent at times. Jewell Trail on the way down was tough due to all the rocks but once you were below tree line it became easier.

I gave this hike 4 stars because the summit was disappointing with the buildings blocking views and the congregation of people that drove their vehicles, and took other means besides hiking to the top. Especially if you want a picture with the summit sign, you have to wait in line with the non-hikers, which doesn’t seem fair haha.

The last bit after the boulders is killer. Had an amazing weather day didn’t need my windbreaker or an extra layer so that was great. Took 4 hours and 45 minutes to get to the top then took the van down- was a bit too pooched to descend but a gorgeous day and gorgeous hike.

They did have detours so I’m curious what the start would have been had we not have had to take the ski trail but all and all a good day.

Amazing! Starts off pretty easy, but after the falls it’s pretty steep! Well, well worth it though! My best hiking experience to date by far!! Had a great day weather wise for it, had clear sky at the top! Started at 6:30am and summited at 11:15am. Stayed a while at the hut to recoup and take in the experience. Staff at the hut were amazing! Had a total of 3 and three quarter hours of hiking. Was a little nervous beforehand, but was able to complete the hike with ease.

If you love waterfall then you will be in waterfalls heaven hiking Ammonoosuc trail. It has so many beautiful waterfalls high up along the trail, all the way up to lakes of the clouds hut that makes this trail unique and special. Don't wait for clear day - the rain and fog will make the waterfalls along the trail even more beautiful. It's similar to the Falling waterfalls trail to Mt. Lafayette, but even more beautiful. We descended down via Jewell trail. There is one small section of the Jewell trail that is all rock near the Gulfside trail that isn't well marked. We met a group of hikers who lost the trail there as they couldn't see far down due to heavy fog. Fortunately I had AllTrails to help guide them back on trail. If you are unsure when you get down to this section just hike down and veer a bit to the left and it will take you back on trail again. Most of Jewell trail is flat until you get to the Gulfside trail which makes descending a lot less demanding on your knees.

Decided to take the plunge after doing several other hikes the last couple months and go for it. After checking the maps here on AllTrails, figured it was best to go to the Cog base station and go up the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail to the Lakes of the Clouds then summit on Mount Washington. Had the most beautiful of days, not too hot, not cold, just right. I guess a lot of others felt it was a great day to hike also but that was OK. Started off with a gentle ascent, till about the first mile. You get to a nice waterfall with a pool and you're lured into thinking that this is not so bad a decision you made to use this trail. :) From there, the adventure begins and the test begins. It's fairly vertical and you're constantly on stones and boulders looking for a good way to go up. At times, you're doing hand over foot. No worries though, you got this. Take a small section at a time and don't worry about the next till you get there. Take your time, drink lots of water and snack bars or whatever. It is a climb till the first section of this ends at the AMC hut, literally. I mean you're 10 feet from the hut and you're still climbing over boulders. It is a tremendous feeling to get there. Pictures don't do the climbing part justice though. You have to feel it. Once you get to the hut, take a little break, get some food in you and take a rest room break (yeah they have one) if necessary before moving on. You've done the hard part, more or less. Yes, you now see the summit and want to get going but take a little time to enjoy the surroundings. Take pics of the lakes and other summits, breathe in the air! From here on up, you're hiking boulder to boulder till the summit. It's not as vertical though it seems it should be. I went up the Tuckerman Crossover then left onto Davis Path and met up with others taking the easier Crawford Path (which is the AT portion). Once you reach this point, you're near the end but the summit ascent from here gets a bit steeper. Take your time, look over your shoulder, stop for water and whatever, remember you're here for the whole show and enjoy it. I reached the summit eventually and it was a busy place. Feel great that you hiked up one of the highest peaks east of the Mississippi and most didn't! It took me 3 hours to get from base station to the AMC hut and another 1.5 hours to get from the hut to the summit. Since I had left at 4am this morning (3.5 hour drive for me), I knew that my plan was to take the Cog down if at all possible. Knowing it depends on the round trippers who already bought their ticket, I was able to get a ride down the Cog. However, if I couldn't, I would go back down the Jewell. No way would I go down the way I came :) lol. It's a 40 minute ride down to the base station and after taking a few minutes to take more pictures and get a couple souvenirs, I packed the car and took my 3.5 hour drive home. All in all, a very successful day, about 15 hours altogether. Not bad for a mid 50 year old. I do think you're better off starting small and working your way up to this challenge. To some it's easy, those younger for sure but if you've been away from hiking, don't attempt this till you get your feel for the trails back. Some say this trail is like a stair stepper burn but my legs were fine even the day after, guessing because I had worked towards this point. Now on to another!

It was hard but not impossible - hooray! We were expecting it to be terrible and for the most part, it was not. Due to the length of the whole hike, it was tiring but manageable. We did Amoonusec up and Jewell trail down in under 9 hours. We had perfect weather - it was cloudy and misty from Lake of the Clouds up to the summit and then very foggy on the summit, but it cleared for our descent. It was cold and 44-55 on the summit but very warm and mild up to Lake of the Clouds. The hut was a great stopover for some coffee before continuing up. The stairs and rock scrambling were not impossible and we are not in that great of shape. The trail was also mostly dry but would be treacherous in the rain or when the rivers were higher. There were many river crossings which we were able to jump over.

Great trail! We followed this down Mt Washington after doing Amoonusec up. It was not easy but much better than the rocks on the other side. It was a clear day so we got great views of the Gulf and the Cog Railroad. It is extremely exposed (more than halfway) so if there is bad weather like lightning or strong wind, I would avoid it. It wasn't well marked on the trail but there were plenty of people to follow. We followed the signs right back to the Amoonusec parking lot.

As mentioned by others, the beginning of the trail is fairly easy, however, once you cross the river it becomes way harder. There are very big rocks to climb and it is very steep. Unlucky us, when we were at that part of the trail, it was raining a lot. We had to pay very close attention to where we were putting our feet and hands because the rocks were slippery. We were very happy to reach the lake of the clouds hut, there, we got to change and put on dry clothes. When we left, the rain stopped and we had a spectacular view! Moreover, the trail from the hut to the summit is a lot easier than from the base to the hut! We aren't advanced hikers, but because we were well prepared, we loved our hike and we would recommend it to others. However, we wouldn't recommend it for going back down...

Took this trail down from Mt Washington summit last week (ascended via Tuckerman/Lions Head). Weather was perfect and trail was dry. In wet conditions, I could see where slippery rock could be an issue. Enjoyed the views. My knees got all they could handle.

Hike is tough but worth it. Beautiful views throughout.

As noted by many others, this trail starts off fairly benignly, and is totally manageable for the first 2 miles. I was expecting things to become steeper and more strenuous as we ascended, but I was not prepared for the frequent scrambles up enormous smooth boulders peppered throughout that last mile. While others scampered up with no trouble, I was terrified I’d lose a hand or foothold and tumble perilously off the rocks. If I weren’t even more afraid to go back down the trail, I would have definitely given up. I should say that conditions were ideal on the day of our climb (8/10), so that was not the issue. I guess it was just more than this 62 yr old fit but somewhat inexperienced hiker should have bitten off! Thank goodness my husband was with me to lend a helping hand! Btw, the hike from Lake of the Clouds to the top of Mt Washington was a piece of cake in comparison, and views were breathtaking!

hiking
1 month ago

Climbed Mt Washington via Jewell trail back and forth. Weather was not terrible, it did get cold at the summit from 80 at the base to 45 F at the summit. But it was August. So do bring warm gear. We were prepared for the hard hike, so didn’t come unexpected. Views are breathtaking. It’s actually 5 miles from Ammonoosuc Ravine trailhead to the summit of Mt Washington one-way. The trail is poorly marked once above tree line on the boulders area with only cairns to guide you. We were lucky there were plenty of people on the trial just to see where we need to be. Otherwise, hard to follow the trail in that area. There are blue marks on the rocks in some places, but don’t use them as your orienteer. Views are breathtaking, well worth it. Alpine area was very exposed but breathtaking.
Be mindful that there is another entrance to this trail just past Cog Railway station, but there is no bridge. And you wouldn’t want to get you feet wet before strenuous hike ahead. We wasted an hour looking for a head trail and inquiring,until we headed back to Ammonoosuc Ravine trailhead. To get into Cog Railway parking is $10, so if you at that point- you need to turn around and drive down about 0.4 miles on 302 until you see parking for Ammonoosuc Ravine on the left. Fee is $5, come early- small lot.

Very difficult but worth it!

Hiked up Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail and then down Jewel Trail. The combination of these is perfect. Ammonoosuc is definitely difficult including crossing 2 waterfalls and a constant rock scrabble to the tree line and beyond then from Lake of the Clouds to the summit it is just a killer stair master climb. Jewel coming down is no picnic as it has its own rock scrabbles but no water so it’s less treacherous. I know they say you can take dogs but being a dog lover I think the rocks on these trails will tear most dogs pads to shreds. The views once beyond the trees are spectacular. Bring something warm for the summit, we started at 80 degrees but the summit was 54 plus 25-30 mph winds.

Decided to take the less common route to Washington. Successful day with Washington not being completely in the clouds. Although sadly disappointed that the highest peak in the Northeast doesn't have a complete 360 view without buildings in the way... thankfully we summited Monroe and got the views we wanted. Loved all the water throughout the trail even on the way up to Washington from the hut.

hiked down Mr Washington with scout troop to clog railroad station. a little long but not too steep we had a few new boys to hiking. of course it rained half way down. some great views before fog came it good trail for new hikers

We hiked from the bottom of the ravine trail to the hut. When I read about the trail, I didn’t realize the extent of the ledges (which were slippery with water running over them yesterday). I love hiking, but this ruined the first half of my day, due to an extreme fear of heights. Yes, I’m aware I was hiking a mountain - but there’s hiking, and there’s rock climbing, which is what the last almost mile and a half of the trail felt like to me, until you reached the hut. The trail was deceiving too - the first two miles were very easy, I was actually wondering why the hike was classified as a hard hike. I soon found out why.

Thankfully the Crawford Path was available to take us back down the mountain, because there is no way I would have tried to go back down that trail. There were a few people going down the ravine trail as we went up. Kudos to them, but not for those with any sort of fear of heights.

Amazing! We hiked up on 7/27/18. I had super low expectations going in as my family (Mom (46), Dad (51), two teens (15, 13)) had never done anything like this before and now I can’t wait to do it again! We started at the Cog Railway and I’m not ashamed to admit we looked like morons trying to find the entrance to the Jewell Trail. So that you too don’t look like us, if you start at the Cog, walk past everyone in line then cross the tracks and you’ll see the Jewell Trail sign. We’ve had a lot of rain so did have to take our time and wait our turn crossing the river/stream. We took the Jewell Trail because everyone said it was “easier”. I can’t even imagine what the Ammanassouc (so?) is like if Jewell was easier. It took us 4.5 hours to the Summit and frankly, it was tough. However, once you get thru the tree line, it is all worth it!!!! Bring binoculars!! I actually found above the tree line harder because the Trail didn’t seem as defined. Yet another tip for folks... follow the rock formations as that is the Trail. Took us awhile to figure that out ;). I wish I tracked how long it took us to the tree line but I think it was about half our time to get to tree line and then half our time from tree line to Summit. Last tip... if you think you have enough water, you don’t. Pack more as we were down to baby sips the closer we got to the Summit! Overall great trip and surprisingly my legs didn’t hurt the next day! I think they would have tho had we climbed down and not taken the Cog. We had to train it tho as we were so not prepared for the weather that was coming in! Happy Trails!!

I hiked up the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail in June and stayed at Lakes of the Clouds before summiting Mt Washington the following day. It was a beautiful, challenging hike that rewards you with incredible views along the way. Don’t let the distance fool you...it’s the steep elevation gain after you pass Gem Pool that is the challenge. Well worth it though. Highly recommend!

We (my wife, 7 year old daughter and I) went up Ammonoosuc to the summit and down Jewell. Saturday was an absolutely perfect day. 4 hours up and maybe 30 minutes on the summit (being such a nice day, it was a mob scene) and 4 hours down. There were parts of Jewell coming down where the bolder scramble was really tough for my daughter but it was an absolutely great time. I did this trail with my mom and sister about 20 years ago and had not come up from the West since, despite probably 10 or 12 hikes up Mt Washington in between. It was the first summit for my wife and daughter and we’re all looking forward to more hikes in the Whites soon!

Load More