Six Handpicked Trails for The Hikers

Six Handpicked Trails for The Hikers

Embark on Nature's Canvas: Discovering the Best Hikes Near Franklin, NH

Nestled in the heart of New Hampshire, near Franklin boasts a treasure trove of hiking trails that beckon adventurers seeking a perfect blend of natural beauty and outdoor exploration. From serene lakeside strolls to challenging mountain ascents, these six handpicked trails offer a diverse range of experiences for hikers of all levels. Lace-up your boots, leash up your furry companions, and join us as we explore the breathtaking landscapes and hidden gems that make New Hampshire a haven for hiking enthusiasts. Whether you're a novice hiker or an experienced trailblazer, each path invites you to immerse yourself in the scenic wonders awaiting just beyond the town's borders. Let's embark on a journey through some of our local’s favorite hikes.

  1. Mount Kearsarge Trail

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Description: The Mount Kearsarge Trail is a moderate hike with a length of 2 miles that takes you to the summit of Mount Kearsarge, providing stunning panoramic views of the Lakes Region. The trail is well-maintained and features a gradual ascent, suitable for hikers of various skill levels. It's a year-round trail, allowing for different experiences in each season. The best time to hike mount Kearsarge is between April to October with our personal favorite being early fall when the leaves are just starting to change color and the air is nice and crisp! You can access the trail head at the Winslow state park off Kearsarge Mountain Road.

Dog-Friendly: Yes, dogs are allowed on a leash.

  1. Belknap Mountain

Difficulty Level: Varies (Moderate to Difficult)

Description: The Belknap Mountain Trail offers a diverse network of trails catering to different difficulty levels. For the Belknap Mountain trail specifically, the loop is about 4.7 miles of moderate to challenging hikes. From easy walks to more challenging hikes, this trail system allows hikers to choose their preferred level of adventure. Enjoy cascading waterfalls and sweeping vistas along the way. The best time to hike this loop is April through October, in July you will find plenty of wild blueberries located along the trail. The trail head for Belknap Mountain is right of Wood Rd – there is a small parking lot that holds about 5 cars so be cognizant of that when you decide to go.

Dog-Friendly: Yes, but some trails may have restrictions, so it's advisable to check beforehand.

  1. Winnipesauke Trail

Difficulty Level: Easy

Description: The Winnipesauke Trail is a family-friendly trail, perfect for a leisurely stroll or a relaxing nature walk. The easy terrain makes it accessible for all ages. This can start in Tilton or Franklin and is a 6.1-mile hike which typically takes about 2hrs to complete. You will walk along the Winnipesaukee River specifically the Lower Winni, which has a deep routed history in the town of franklin. Here you will see old mill sites, a trestle bridge, an “upside down bridge” and old train tracks. The trail starts or ends depending on which direction you are going at New England’s first whitewater park at Trestle View Park. This is a great place to eat lunch and relax after a nice walk with plenty of options to get food in town!

Dog-Friendly: Yes, dogs are allowed on a leash.

  1. Mountain Brook

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Description: Mountain Brook Trail in Andover is 3.3 miles long and takes a little over an hour to complete on average. provides a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. With a moderate difficulty level, this trail weaves through a peaceful forest, leading to a loud waterfall. It's an ideal choice for those seeking a balance between a good workout and a serene natural setting. Typically, there won’t be a lot of people on this trail but be warned you may want to wear mud boots or waterproof hiking shoes as this trail tends to be on the wetter side.

Dog-Friendly: Yes, dogs are allowed on a leash.

  1. Profile Falls Trail

Difficulty Level: Easy

Description: The Profile Falls Trail is known for being a very easy trail for the whole family with a fantastic swimming spot at the end. The swimming spot offers you the opportunity to swim around a beautiful waterfall. The length of this trail is .2 miles which takes about 4 minutes to complete (Bring bug spray), the parking lot is right at the entrance of the trail and is suitable for multiple vehicles. On the warmer days during summer, it is typically very busy.

Dog-Friendly: Not dog friendly.

  1. Ragged Mountain Trail

Difficulty Level: Moderate to Challenging

Description: Ragged Mountain Trail is a 6.3-mile loop that is a more strenuous option, suitable for seasoned hikers. The trail features a mix of wooded paths and open ridges, providing a diverse hiking experience. The challenging ascent is rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views. Beware the trails could be marked better when you are on balancing rock trail, just go slow and take your time through that area.

Dog-Friendly: Yes, but due to the trail's difficulty, it's recommended for experienced and well-trained dogs.

As our journey through the locals’ favorite hikes near Franklin, NH, comes to a close, we've witnessed the diverse tapestry of landscapes that this charming towns surrounding has to offer. From the panoramic summit views of Mount Kearsarge to the family-friendly trails of the Winnipesaukee Trail, each hike presents a unique opportunity to connect with nature.

Whether you seek the challenge of a rugged ascent up Ragged Mountain Trail or the tranquility of Profile Falls, Franklins surrounding areas provide a spectrum of outdoor experiences. The dog-friendly trails add an extra layer of companionship to your adventures.

As the seasons change, so too does the character of these trails, ensuring that every visit offers something new. So, whether you're a local looking to explore your backyard or a visitor seeking the essence of Franklin's natural beauty to the trails that extend past Franklin, these hikes are gateways to moments of serenity, wonder, and physical accomplishment.

So, lace-up, leash-up, and embrace the call of the wild that echoes through the trails surrounding Franklin, NH. Let the rustle of leaves and the scent of pine guide you as you carve your path through the picturesque landscapes, creating memories that linger long after the journey ends. These trails await—nature's invitation to explore is one that should not be ignored.