Franconia Ridge 2011 Nov 19
Steve Bussolari, Jonah Tower, Fred Knight
Fred's Home


We hiked up Falling Waters, across Franconia Ridge from Little Haystack to Lafayette, and then down Old Bridle Path. We took 8 hours, well above book time. Always a fun hike! My last time up here was in April when the snow was deep. Only a dusting today.

Jonah's iphone recorded most of the trip and geo-coded his pictures, which are very cute. "Well, it looks like my track came out a little better than I originally thought: http://www.everytrail.com/fullscreen.php?trip_id=1365284. Make sure to look at both Statistics Modem and Pictures (see bottom right). There are definitely a few drop outs, but the application seems to have pushed through them and the total miles is pretty close. My only complaint is that I didn’t take more pictures, since I had plenty of battery life at the end. The main link is http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=1365284&code=349797efe1d8f858a2cef5da4556fea0."
previous next 10 images
Fred and Jonah at trailhead parking lot
Fred and Jonah at trailhead parking lot
It's just before 8am
Steve and Jonah at trailhead parking lot
Steve and Jonah at trailhead parking lot
Ready,set, hike.
Falling Waters
Falling Waters
It's the best part of the trail going up; you skirt to the left.
Falling Waters
Falling Waters
Steve's view
Falling Waters, Jonah and Fred
Falling Waters, Jonah and Fred
About an hour into the hike
Jonah and Steve atop Little Haystack
Jonah and Steve atop Little Haystack
4780', up 3400' from trailhead, very little snow but wind galore
Mt Washington from Little Haystack
Mt Washington from Little Haystack
Mt Washington is white to right of me and rest of Presidentials between us
Windblown Frost atop Mt. Lincoln
Windblown Frost atop Mt. Lincoln
Close-up of ice on granite
Down from Lafayette toward Greenleaf Hut
Down from Lafayette toward Greenleaf Hut
Fred and Jonah with cairns on Lafayette
Franconia ridge from trail to Greenleaf Hut
Franconia ridge from trail to Greenleaf Hut
Steve's view of our route


Fred's panoramic 90-degrees from Greenleaf Hut, to Lafayette, Lincoln, Little Haystack, and a bounding Steve. We had just come down the 1.1 miles from Lafayette
Click once to get full field; click again to get higher resolution and pan across image.
GreenleafFranconiaRidge Note: Constructed with Steve Smith's method in Photoshop: Photoshop>File>Automate>PhotoMerge... Auto, Blend, Vignette Removal, Geometric Distortion Correction then Photoshop>Edit>Puppet Warp.


We drove up early and got started at 7:55 am, heading up Falling Water. A few cars in the parking lot; a few footprints on the path. We made good time, enjoying the lower trail next to the creek and falls and then the upper trail with switchbacks. Little snow and no ice until the final ascent where two of us donned microspikes. We met two impressive dads carrying large packs for their 10-year-old sons. Before the top we layered up for the expected wind. Quite a breeze; I'd say up to 40 mph, as predicted.

The hike along the ridge was slow with the wind. We met a few other parties. By the time we reached Lafayette we were half an hour behind book time. Large crowds of hikers huddled in the lee side at the top of Lafayette. We had some lunch before getting to Lafayette in the treed area between Lincoln and Lafayette.

After a rest on Lafayette, we headed toward Greenleaf Hut, 1.1 miles of wind and slow going for Steve and Fred. Hit ice about 2/3 of the way down, and Steve and Fred got those micropikes out again. It was 1:45 by the time we left Greenleaf for the final 2.9 miles down Old Bridle Path. Lots of traffic, including many heading up in the afternoon. Still icy spots along most of the upper trail, so we kep tthe microspikes on. Jonah humored us old geezers and stayed close. Two guys on their way up thought that Greenleaf was open for self service; not sure what they did for the night.

Summary: 9.8 miles, 3800' rise, 8 hours, clear skies with magnificent views, temperatures near freezing, windy on the ridge.