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Lonesome Lake Trail

MODERATE 697 reviews

Lonesome Lake Trail is a 3.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Lincoln, New Hampshire that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, camping, and snowshoeing and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 3.1 miles Elevation Gain: 1,026 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

camping

hiking

snowshoeing

walking

beach

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Directions from Lincoln or Franconia, NH: This trail is located in the southern most parking area of Lafayette Campground which is located on I-93 about midway between the towns of Lincoln and Franconia.

hiking
snow
7 days ago

11/29/19: went to the hut and back. Trail is pretty well packed - started with boots only, then put on spikes at the switchback and kept them on for the rest of the climb and for the way down.

hiking
snow
16 days ago

I have done this hike about 4-5 times and love it ever time. Great home with the dogs. Snowing as we hiked to the lake.

hiking
icy
snow
25 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

I actually hiked up to the hut last December. It was a winter wonderland and the views, especially at night were amazing. This is a very busy trail on weekends even in the winter but basic trail etiquette will always make for an enjoyable trip. Be prepared, it’s the White Mountains and weather can change very quickly.

hiking
muddy
rocky
1 month ago

Great trail. My first. Moderate intensity. We found hiking sticks and used them but next time will purchase the sticks. We stopped when we saw water but didn’t go all the way to the hut. Weather was unpredictable and we saw bear droppings so we hiked back. We didn’t have all equipment needed and made our way back. Will definitely hike there again and possibly an overnight stay. Amazing though and I highly recommend.

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful. Not Lonesome enough on Saturdays, though.

hiking
rocky
scramble
1 month ago

Not an easy hike for me but made it with several breaks. Must have proper footwear and hiking poles.

hiking
1 month ago

We did this hike on October 12th. It’s was short, steep and very enjoyable hike for us. We sat around the lake and enjoyed fall colors. View is amazing specially the reflection of the mountain in the lake.

hiking
1 month ago

The busiest Saturday of the year according to our shuttle driver. Yes, shuttle, there are plenty at exit 34C Cannon Mt. if you want to get into the Lafayette Campground lot, be there at 6:30 am! The shuttles ($5) were great and necessary. The trail was not crowded. It is steep and I needed breaks. My kids ran ahead of me. The hut was a welcome break. The staff were helpful and friendly. The bathrooms were immaculate. We took same trail down. The other option would have dropped us off at the Basin not sure the shuttles were going to be there. Thank you New Hampshire!

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Beautiful pretty easy hike. Kids and dogs friendly. Plenty nice spots to rest. Make sure you walk the lake around. There is a beautiful dock spot across from the trail. Hiking is pretty easy but make sure you wear hiking shoes.

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Beautiful hike. Went with my gf prior to a Wedding on Loon... I would recommend hiking boots, does get a little rocky. Steep climb but well worth it at the Lake. Parking lot hold ~20 spots, we were lucky to get a spot

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

I just did this trail for a warm up, plus it brought back childhood memories. beautiful lake and perfect for families.

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

Done on a cloudy, drizzly Saturday in September. The trail is very well define and well trafficked. Quite steep in places, with plenty of rocky steps along the way. The trail itself is about 1.5 miles up to the lake with around 950-1000 ft in elevation gain. The lake itself was completely shrouded in clouds when we arrived, and it gave the loop trail a very Tolkien-esque feel. I would say it's a very reasonable hike for more casual hikers. I'm quite out of shape and had no difficulty reaching the lake in about 45 minutes.

hiking
2 months ago

This is a nice little hike. Nice climb, which you can attack if you want a more strenuous hike. Beautiful lake and backdrop at the top. You can make it longer by staying on the AT longer. Overall, a good hike!

hiking
2 months ago

Nice hike up to the lake and around.

hiking
2 months ago

Took two dogs with me and it was a great time! Loved the trail and beautiful lake at the top! Worth it! Took about 2 hours going at an average pace

hiking
2 months ago

Wow. Talk about being transported to another world. The hike up is TOUGH. But the second you get to the lake, it’s allllll worth it. Highly recommend popping your head into the Lonesome Lake Hut, the views from the hut (by the bathroom) are stunning.

hiking
2 months ago

A beautiful experience with my dog. We got to the parking lot at 845 on Saturday and it was almost full. Nice bathroom facilities at campground and the hut. Not too strenuous of a hike but good climbing with the lake and hut at the top it was a bonus. My pup enjoyed a swim before our decent.

hiking
2 months ago

Solid hike with a decent, consistent incline. Lake and hit up top are great. Takes about 1.5-2 hours at a decent pace.

hiking
3 months ago

Fantastic hike ! It was all in the woods and you know you’re climbing to a lake so you keep wondering when it will be visible. We felt the highway was only audible for the first 1/3 of the hike so it didn’t bother us. The last part of the ascent was definitely hard with all the rocks. The planks leading to the hut were super helpful with the muddiness and were in great condition. We managed to do this with a 2 year old and let her hike and scramble over rocks. It took us about 5 hours to do with her at her pace and all our stopping.

hiking
3 months ago

We camped at the base of this trail (Lafayette Campground) and hiked it several times we loved it so much!

recorded Lonesome Lake Trail

hiking
3 months ago

The trail was a moderate hike up but the noise from the highway took away the feeling of calmness. Lake is definitely very peaceful. There are huts up there guys.. take advantage of them.

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

A short but surprisingly steep hike! Took me about 45min to get up to lake level, and starting at 10:30am on a weekday meant I didn’t meet anyone until the summit. Also really nice to reach the hut and savor a bowl of mushroom soup as reward! My only real dislike of the trail was while the lake is tranquil, on the up/down you are listening to the nonstop roar of traffic on I-93. I prefer my hikes to have the sound of the woods dominate.

hiking
3 months ago

Busted my ass a few times. But damn was it worth it.

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