Mount Monadnock is the most prominent mountain in Southern New Hampshire, rising over 1,000 feet above any other peak within 30 miles. Because the summit contains hardly any vegetation, it offers hikers spectacular, far-reaching views of the surrounding area. Monadnock has been a popular destination for hiking enthusiasts as far back as the 19th Century. These include iconic American writers Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson, both of whom wrote fondly about Monadnock and have lookout points on the mountain named after them.
Did you know?
Mount Monadnock is one of the most frequently climbed mountains in the world, a distinction it shares with the likes of Mount Fuji, Mount Kilimanjaro, and Mount Tai.
Mount Monadnock Basics
- Summit elevation: 3,165’ (965 m)
- Vertical gain: 2,004
- Hiking mileage: 8.3 miles
- Location: Monadnock State Park, Jaffrey, NH.
Hiking Mount Monadnock
There are a number of beautiful trails extending from the base to the mountain to the summit from nearly every direction. Advanced hikers can follow the 8.8 mile Pumpelly Trail from the northeast side of the mountain while less experienced hikers should follow the shorter but steeper 4.4 mile White Dot Trail on the southeast side.
- Driving from Boston, MA: 1:42 (88 Miles)
- Driving from Albany, NY: 2:30 (113 Miles)
- Look-up turn-by-turn directions to the trailhead here on Google Maps
Where to Stay
Camping is available in Mount Monadnock State Park. Pets, however, are not permitted.
There are a number of good bed and breakfast options in Jaffrey close to the Monadnock trailheads. One of the most beautiful and quaint of these is the historic Benjamin Prescott Inn, built in 1853. For those seeking more modern amenities, there are a number of major hotel chains located in Keene, NH, 30 minutes west of Mount Monadnock State Park.
For those looking in the Jaffrey area, Kimball Farm has been a popular summer destination of New Englanders for over 80 years. Known for its superb homemade ice cream, it also offers a full menu that includes delicious fried seafood and lobster rolls.
For those staying in the Dublin area, I highly recommend Del Rossi’s Trattoria, a Georgian style colonial farmhouse constructed in 1786. The history surrounding this fine establishment will leave visitors in awe and the food is quite good.
Thanks to New England Six-Pack of Peaks Ambassador Craig Wonson for local recommendations and details.