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What to expect

New Hampshire has 1883 trails including medium, difficult, extra difficult, and easy trails. The trail with the highest elevation climb is the Hampton Beach and Harbor Trail and the one with the least climb is the Mount Washington Loop via Jewell Trail. The longest trail is Appalachian Trail - Maine at 414 km. To complete this hike you should budget at least 26 days. For a shorter adventure, you can try the Plummers Ledge Natural Area Loop a t 584 m. This could be done in as little as 1 days. Trails with the best offering of hostels include Connecticut River Out and Back, Monte Rosa and Bald Rock via Cliff Walk, Mount Monadnock and Cascade Link Loop, Straightback Mountain and North Straightback Mountain Loop, and Stinson Mountain Loop.

Guide to hiking in New Hampshire

Be prepared for hiking in New Hampshire with the HiiKER app

FAQs about hiking in New Hampshire

What is the climate like for hiking in New Hampshire?

New Hampshire experiences four distinct seasons, each offering a unique hiking experience. Spring (March-May) is mild but can be muddy due to snowmelt. Summer (June-August) offers the warmest hiking conditions, but staying hydrated is essential.
Fall (September-November), with its mild temperatures and vivid autumn colors, is a favorite among hikers. Winter (December-February) can be challenging due to cold and snow, but it offers serene beauty for well-equipped hikers. Always check the weather before heading out. The New Hampshire State Parks ( and the Mount Washington Observatory ( provide valuable information.

Do I need a permit to hike in New Hampshire?

Most hiking trails in New Hampshire do not require permits, but certain activities like camping or fishing might. For more details and to obtain necessary permits, it's advisable to check with the New Hampshire Division of Parks and Recreation ( and the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department (

Is wild camping allowed in New Hampshire?

Wild camping in New Hampshire is generally allowed in national forests with some restrictions, while it's limited in state parks to designated campgrounds. Always follow Leave No Trace principles. For camping regulations, refer to the White Mountain National Forest website ( and the New Hampshire State Parks site (

Are there mountain rescue services in New Hampshire?

For emergencies during hiking in New Hampshire, dial 911 to reach local authorities who will coordinate with the appropriate rescue services. The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department's Law Enforcement Division also assists with search and rescue operations. Visit their website for more information (

Are there dangerous plants in New Hampshire?

New Hampshire's hiking trails wind through forests of birch, beech, and maple, with beautiful wildflowers blooming in spring and summer. Hikers should be aware of poison ivy in wooded areas. For more information on local flora, the New Hampshire Wildflowers website (,mountain%20laurel%2C%20and%20sugar%20maple.) is a great resource.

What wildlife should I be aware of when hiking in New Hampshire?

Hikers in New Hampshire may encounter a variety of wildlife, including white-tailed deer, moose, and numerous bird species. Ticks and mosquitoes are common during warmer months. Black bears are present but seldom seen. Visit the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department's website ( for detailed wildlife information.