We did this bushwhack many years ago (Fall of 1999). When we were going to Lyndon State College in Northeastern Vermont, we'd always drive past the ravine that Lafayette Brook flowed down when we were driving I93 through Franconia Notch. The view always grabbed our attention and I thought it would be a bushwhack.
On a warm fall day, we decided to tackle the brook and see how far up into the ravine we could get. We parked in the hiking parking over by Cannon and walked over to the brook where it goes under the closed bridge that's open for views of Lafayette. From there, we got down to the brook and then started our way up. We didn't expect to climb the headwall and get up on Lafayette, but we were surprised at just how thick and slow going the route along Lafayette Brook was. I had thought that there would at least be a few herd paths, but it was really slow going through some really thick woods. After lunch, we ended up cutting up to the Eagle Cliffs Pass and then followed the Greenleaf Trail back down to the car in the notch.
We did find a few nice views as we got higher into the ravine and I've always wanted to go back to get up to the headwall, but we've just never had it work out for us. If I had to do it again, I'd probably spend the night in the ravine and then use the next day to climb the headwall to Lafayette and come back down the Greenleaf Trail.
Look for more past trips as I scan more of our older trip photos.
For more information
The Appalachian Mountain Club publishes maps and trail information for this area along with the entire White Mountain region in the White Mountain Trail Guide. This area is covered by the AMC's Franconia - Pemigewasset: White Mountains Trail Map.