HIKES & EVENTS

GetWinter Hike #4: Mt. Liberty

Hiking/Walk

DATE: Jan 09, 2021
END DATE: Jan 09, 2021

Hike/Event Location: Lincoln NH

Trip Leader(s)


Gandalf
Thornton, NH United States,

JDNnh
Manchester, NH United States

Meeting Time: 9:00 AM

Max # People: 10

Hike Guiding / Event Fee: No, I will not be asking participants for money

Hike Difficulty Level:

Strenuous

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Summary

At 4459 feet, Liberty is the 18th highest mountain in New Hampshire. If the Old Bridle Path and Falling Waters Trail in Franconia Notch, New Hampshire, have a younger sibling, the type eager to prove its every bit as sweat inducing with equally dazzling views, then without question the Liberty Springs Trail is it. Almost literally in the shadows of its 5,000+ foot neighbors Mt. Lafayette and Mt. Lincoln, Mt. Liberty might not measure up to its bigger siblings, but it’s no slouch of a mountain either at 4,459 feet.

Mt. Liberty offers an ideal winter hike to get ready for our final GetWinter hike across the Franconia Ridge. It will be a 6.4 mile hike via Liberty Springs Trail with 3050 ft elevation gain.

We will be hiking in winter conditions at a moderate pace with time to enjoy the scenery. There will be some ice and snow. Light tracking devices are mandatory and we may need snowshoes if there was a recent snowstorm.  If you don’t own a pair of snowshoes, you can always rent them from your local outdoor gear shop or from Ski Fanatics near our house in Waterville Valley. You’ll also need Light traction such as either Kahtoola MicroSpikes or Hillsounds Crampons from your local outdoor outfitter such as REI or EMS; or online.

Please have the appropriate gear/clothing to hike this time of year and the appropriate amount of layers to keep your core body warm. We recommend WINTER hiking boots, MicroSpikes, wool hat, gloves, hand warmers, rain/wind gear, warm layers, HEADLAMP and NO COTTON. Carry at least 2 liters of water, lunch and snacks.

Winter Hiking Clothing/Gear Tips and Recommendations

Winter conditions will be in effect so this moderate hike is ideal for anyone on their first winter hike. Winter travel offers unique challenges to any hiker and we can provide tips and answer any of your questions during the hike. We are here to help you!

For winter hiking, you are basically wearing the same clothing/gear you did in summer except you need to have additional layers to keep your core body warm, dress in synthetic layers [no cotton], wool hat, and gloves [we highly recommend buying the chemical hand warmers for your gloves]. The only piece of gear you will have to buy is MicroSpikes [Kahtoola is a popular brand], which are essentially cleats that you attach to your boots to prevent falls from black ice encountered on the trail.  

One of the biggest mistakes beginner winter hikers do is overdress. You don’t need a heavy winter jacket since you will be heating up naturally during the hike. Wear thin, insulated layers so you can easily regulate your temperature. If you overdress, you will start sweating and actually make yourself get colder. Assess if your summer daypack is big enough to put your clothes in as you warm up and if not, then that is probably another investment you’ll have to make for this trip.

Winter hiking boots is something you may want to invest in later on, since it helps keep your feet warm, dry and comfortable. Snowshoes will not be needed for this hike, and we rarely use them in general, but are definitely needed to break trail if we recently had any significant snowfall. We like to carry a very small thermos with some sort of hot beverage which is so comforting to drink on a very cold day.

Event Coordinators: Mike Boisvert and Jon Normand

Directions To Trailhead Parking Lot

Liberty Springs trailhead is accessible by the Whitehorse trailhead parking lot off Interstate 93 Northbound on the western side of the mountain. Get off Exit 33 onto US 3 and head past the Whale's Tale Waterpark, Indian Head Resort, the sign marking the entrance into Franconia Notch and the Flume Visitors Center. Continue past the Flume Visitors Center and you'll soon see signs that will say "Trailhead Parking" on the right. We’ll be driving a blue Toyota Tacoma truck. 

Trip Leader(s)

Gandalf

Outdoor Fitness Level: Very Strenuous


Thornton, NH


United States
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JDNnh

Outdoor Fitness Level: Very Strenuous


Manchester, NH


United States
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