Grand Traverses: Franconia Ridge

Enjoy panoramic views on an exposed, granite ridgewalk.
Publish date:

Table of Contents | Pfiffner Traverse, CO | Roan Highlands, NC/TN | Sawtooth Ridge, WA | Ruby Crest, NV | Great Northern Traverse, MT | Sierra High Route, CA | Monroe Skyline, VT | Superstition Ridge, AZ | Guadalupe Ridge, NM/TX | Teton Crest Trail, WY | Greenstone Ridge, MI | Franconia Ridge, NH | Great Range, NY

Distance 8.9 miles

Gain 3,900 feet

Difficulty 6

Why it’s grand This 9-mile hike is among the best single-day samplers of the White Mountains, and a good warmup for the classic Presidential Traverse ( You’ll tag three summits, cross alpine terrain, and pass three waterfalls as you traverse 1.7 miles of Franconia Ridge.

Do it From the Lafayette Place trailhead, ascend via the steep Falling Waters Trail, and come down via the Greenleaf and Old Bridle Trails. Weekdays are less busy. 

Nineteenth-century logging in this area helped inspire the legislation that created the East’s national forests.

(603) 536-6100; fs.usda .gov/whitemountain)

May to October 

Popular Content