Hiking: The Falling Waters and Bridal Path Trails Loop Over Mount Lincoln and Mount Lafayette | White Mountains, NH | June 27, 2008
About the Hike
This hike takes you from the floor of Franconia Notch, up to the summit of Little Haystack. From there, you hike across the fairly narrow Franconia Ridge to reach Mount Lincoln. You descend on the ridge and then make the final climb up to the summit of Mount Lafayette. From Lafayette, you start hiking back down along the Greenleaf Trail until you reach the AMC Greenleaf Hut. That’s where you get on the Bridal Path, finish descending the ridge and hook back into the Falling Waters Trail before reaching the Lafayette Place Trailhead parking lot.
All told it’s about a 9 mile loop with and a gain and loss of several thousand vertical feet.
Parking for this loop hike is available at the Lafayette Place Trailhead just off of Interstate 93 in Franconia Notch. This is a large parking area that supports the Bridal Path and Falling Waters Trails, but on weekends it can fill quite quickly and it is best to get there as early as possible. Even better, plan the hike for a weekday and parking is a lot easier.
Since the parking area is located within a State Park (Franconia Notch State Park), there is no day use fee for parking.
Starting out at the Lafayette Place Trailhead parking lot in Franconia Notch State Park, the Bridal Path and Falling Waters Trail start out together for about a quarter mile or so of fairly easy walking.
Pemigewasset Wilderness and the North Country.
From there, you begin descending down a shoulder of Lafayette on the Greenleaf Trail. This trail is fairly exposed for about half the trip down to the hut.
entire photoset for this hike on Flickr.
For more information on Hiking, Climbing and Skiing in the White Mountains
We have produced a short guide to the recreational opportunities available in Franconia Notch State Park. If you are looking to hike, the best guide to the trails of the White Mountains is published by the Appalachian Mountain Club. The White Mountain Trail Guide provides descriptions and maps for all of the hiking trails of the White Mountains. AMC also produces a map for the trails in the Franconia Notch Region, as does National Geographic in their Trails Illustrated series.