PINNACLE MOUNTAIN & ROSE MOUNTAIN - LYNDEBOROUGH, NEW HAMPSHIRE
Peaks: Pinnacle Mountain (1,703 ft) & Rose Mountain (1,730 ft)
Location: Lyndeborough, New Hampshire
Trails: Helen's Trail & Snowmobile Trails
Trailhead: The trailhead is located directly across the street from 444 Mountain Road in Lyndeborough, New Hampshire. There are no signs indicating the trail so it is quite easy to miss - Helen’s Trail starts between a telephone pole and an old rock wall.
Parking: Small parking to the left of the road if heading from Center Road. There will be a flagpole and mailbox to the left of the parking area.
Miles: Roughly 2.7
Recommendation: This set of trails connect three peaks for an easy day hike with spectacular views of Mount Monadnock and Crotched Mountain. Mosquitos and ticks were abundant so take preventative measures.
It's so nice to be back home again in beautiful New Hampshire recently relocating south from western Maine last month. The holiday weekend, and a very brief window of sunshine, offered an opportunity to have my first camping trip of 2017 so a fellow photographer and I took to exploring just outside the sprawling suburban areas of Nashua about 30 miles from downtown.
Finding the trailhead on Mountain Road was tricky as the small paper signs have eroded with time. The trails themselves are also not particularly well marked aside from the occasional yellow reflector or handmade wooden sign pointing the way. Starting on Helen’s Trail off of Mountain Road, rock walls lead the way through the thick forest. Soon you will reach a stream to cross as you pass through the evergreens and into a slow grade. After about 15 minutes you reach the top of The Pinnacle with views of Mount Monadnock in the distance.
Heading down from the summit of The Pinnacle is a steeper grading into the woods bursting to life with wild low bush blueberries and maple trees. Come July, the blueberries should be ripe for picking making for some amazing trail snacks. The trail eventually turns into snowmobile trails offering flat and even crossing between mountains.
A few days before in preparation for the adventure, I had prepared some lentil chili and rice that easily packed into my cooking supplies. A fellow camper had kindly left a metal grill to use for cooking so we warmed some naan, topped the chili with avocado and reveled in our well deserved meal as the sun set. After dinner and s’mores we explored the area surrounding our camp finding deep purple cones forming on a spruce and cairns pointing the way to Mount Monadnock.
WAKING UP IN A CLOUD
At 4am with the moon still lighting up the sky, the birds greeted us with song beckoning us from our tent. During the night the clouds descended to where we slept. I have always loved the atmosphere fog brings to a photo and here was an opportunity to capture the magic. Although we had hoped for stars, the cool morning breeze made up for the overcast skies.
On hike down from Rose Mountain, the conditions were right for encountering New Hampshire's State Amphibian, the eastern newt, with an absolute minefield of the little guys crossing the trails, just as we were. There were hundreds - so much so it was important to be mindful of each step so as not harm them.
All in all this was an amazing little hike I hope to frequent while I am staying in the area.
VANGUARD KINRAY 48 BACKPACK & VANGUARD ALTA CA 234AT TRIPOD
The last few years for quick day hikes and a few overnights I've been using my Vanguard Kinray 48 Backpack. There are plenty of pockets for storage and anything extra can be clipped via carabiners. Unfortunately this isn't a style that Vanguard makes anymore but it's served me well in my travels.