Big Ball Mountain Trail is a 3.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Melvin Village, New Hampshire that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 3.7 miles Elevation Gain: 1,384 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

forest

river

views

Starts in an unmarked parking lot and follows the Shaw Mt Trail until just after the start of the river. The trail breaks off and heads to the right and is marked with green and red or blue and red blazes.

hiking
bugs
rocky
3 days ago

Good moderate hike with a few steeper climbs. Normal bug ratio at bottom where it follows the river, but up higher in elevations I didn't expect so many bugs. The hike is well marked and follows a single trail the whole way. Dog friendly, and plan to spend some time enjoying the great view at top, which is definitely worth the trip.

hiking
muddy
10 days ago

hiking
rocky
10 days ago

Definitely hard to find the trail in places. Happy to have AllTrails!

hiking
bugs
rocky
scramble
23 days ago

Challenging trail with some rocky parts and a scramble at the end. Amazing view! The bugs are so so bad right now though. We almost turned around because of them.

hiking
24 days ago

Great trail. Bring the family. Tough.

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful hike. No snow/ice until you break the tree line. Ascends at a constant incline. Short but steep

hiking
rocky
snow
washed out
2 months ago

Great variety and possible traverses. Lots of water access at beginning and camping. Large parking lot

hiking
snow
3 months ago

hiking
rocky
7 months ago

Beautiful view at the top with no one around! It is pretty steep for average mid 60 year old hikers but definitely worth the view! Lots of lady bugs at the top! Poles definitely help on the way down. A little confusing in places but the green/red markers guided us all the way to the top!

hiking
9 months ago

trail was very poorly marked and we missed the waterfalls it claims to have pictured. We followed the red and green Mark's which was recommend, however, that lead up very steep incline towards a semi decent view of the islands. Overall hike was not really worth the views at the end.

The bottom half of this trail is a logging road. There are no blazes until you get to the narrower part, and that wasn’t marked very well. Follow the green/red/green blazes to the top where it forks. Head to the left on the blue trail to get to the Big Ball summit. Some areas need to be marked better, but all in all a fantastic hike!

hiking
9 months ago

An unsung trail, Big Ball Mountain took my breath away. Gorgeous views of Dan Hole Pond, Lake Winnipesaukee and surrounding mountains including Gunstock in the distance and a close up of Black Snout. Lush wild blueberry picking- bring your buckets. No crowds. Highly recommend.

hiking
off trail
rocky
scramble
9 months ago

We did this yesterday, great hike! Stays pretty steady with elevation gain throught the hike. This is called the Italian trail and is marked with both red and green markings. From the parking lot, go straight and keep a lookout for the red and green markings on the trees that will be on your right. You will pass some unmarked trails / old logging roads, but don't turn right until you find the red and green markings. This will be the italian trail. Great views of the lakes and black snout from the ledges.

hiking
9 months ago

HIKE TODAY WITH MY DAUGHTER ABI AND OUR TWO YORKIE'S. THEY DID GREAT. PASSED OUT WHEN WE GOT BACK TO THE TRUCK AND WENT TO SLEEP FOR THE RIDE HOME. NICE VIEW ON TOP, OPEN LEDGE.BLUEBERRY'S EVERYWHERE. TRAIL IS MARKED WELL GREEN RED STRIPE. BUT THERE HAS BEEN LOGGING IN THE AREA. THE 2 RIGHT TURNS YOU HAVE TO MAKE ARE FLAGGED OUT WITH YELLOW RIBBIN. NICE BROOK FOR THE FIRST 1/2 MILE.

recorded Big Ball Mountain Trail

hiking
bugs
10 months ago

hiking
bugs
over grown
rocky
10 months ago

A fun and at times challenging hike for someone comfortable with some overgrown/poorly marked trails—the terrain was diverse and there were views of the lakes from Black Snout. Made a loop by ascending via the Brook trail (which follows the brook), the trail is gentle at first then steep for the last .5 mile. The lower Brook trail was wet in a handful of spots and buggy. Brook trail meets the Shaw trail; follow the flat well marked Shaw trail to your right to the summit of Black Snout at 2,803’. From just below the summit, the “Italian” trail is marked by a small cairn and is at first very overgrown. This trail opens up and winds through a lovely evergreen forest, which was dry and I encountered few bugs. The trail climbs over Big Ball where there are blueberry bushes, before descending towards Rt. 171 via Little Ball. The trail crossed and eventually converges with a wide, rocky “road” like path which returns to the brook trail near its start.

hiking
bugs
over grown
rocky
Sun May 19 2019

While there is a beautiful waterfall at the start of the hike, the trail is VERY unmarked. The markings are old and hard to see. The path is also rocky with loose logs all over the place. Myself and another person ended up off trail for a half hour and when we got our way back onto it we didn’t even bother climbing to the top due to the amount of bugs. There are also many ticks here, we both found ticks on ourselves after the hike. There are other better marked trails in the area just down the road. Skip this and do those instead!

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