Its still winter...
North Hancock and the Bonds
Well this winter has left much to be desired has it not? Last weekend's weather was absolutely glorious although completely uncharacteristic. The temperatures in New Hampshire were going to be in the 60's and it was completely sunny. I just couldn't resist steeling a day to hike some more 4,000 footers. With the completion of the Hancocks, I'm officially halfway through New Hampshire's 48 4kers. I need to slow down...

I know I say this about every hike in New England, but this was another wonderful one! The Hancocks are located just north of the famous Kancamangus Highway and just past the highest road pass in New England. The parking lot is well marked and just before a hairpin turn on the highway. 
Lookout on the summit of South Hancock
The Hike

This is a 10 mile hike which penetrates the vast wilderness of the White Mountains. Although its not within the Pemigewasset Wilderness, the area you hike through is very similar and feels just as wild. This hike was particularly enjoyable because it starts at a high elevation and is almost entirely within pine wood forests. It skirts around several streams which make for a serene day hike.

Map of the Hancock Hike

After 3.6 miles of gentle ascent from the trailhead, you hit the turnoff for each of the Hancocks. If you bear right, you will climb South Hancock at 4,278ft. If you bear left, you will hit the summit of North Hancock which is the high point at 4,380ft. Both trails are very steep and in the winter, you would want microspikes and possibly snowshoes if it has recently snowed. A sturdy pair of hiking boots will do in the summer. I preferred to do South Hancock first and then have my lunch on North Hancock. There is a viewpoint just beyond the summit of North Hancock that makes the ascent worth it! Otherwise the views are mostly directional. This hike can easily be done in 6-8 hours.
The view from the summit of North Hancock. The Osceolas are directly south.
Other than that, there's not much to say about the Hancocks! There are certainly better hikes in the Whites if you're just looking for a nice view or a shorter hike. If you're hiking all the 4,000 footers though, I think you'll find this slice of wilderness to be devoid of crowds and much quieter than some of the higher mountains.

Read. Plan. Get Out There!