|Speckled Mountain hike looking towards Evans Notch|
Speckled Mountain, the namesake of the wilderness area, is another somewhat low summit but with a significant alpine feeling and great views. The entire hike is nice too- there's waterfalls, cascades, blueberries, an exposed ridgeline and a good summit; what else do you need? This 8.6 mile loop is moderately strenuous but worth the trip. Here's the map:
The hike begins at the Brickett Place Parking Lot just across the Maine/New Hampshire Border on Rt 113. It is accessible in the winter, unlike anything else north of this location on Route 113. Starting elevation is roughly 600' and it ascends to Speckled Mountain at an elevation of 2,906'. It makes for a good day long hike or for some hikers about a 1/2 day.
The trail gently ascends 0.7 miles to the turnoff for the Bickford Brook Trail which heads north and the Blueberry Ridge Trail which heads east. We elected to hike the Blueberry Ridge Trail up and Bickford Brook Trail down. From this turnoff, the trail winds by the bickford slides which are a great opportunity for photos:
|The Bickford Slides|
|Nice cascades on the trail up Blueberry mountain|
At the end of the ridgeline, the trail turns eastwards to make the final 0.5 mile to the summit of Speckled Mountain. There used to be a fire tower here but it was removed a long time ago. Nevertheless, there is an adequate clearing with views to the North.
|Blueberry Ridge Trail, Speckled Mountain Wilderness|
|Directional views from the summit of Speckled Mountain|
|View of Evans Notch from near the summit. Baldfaces are on the left|
Overall, its a great loop hike which is not as difficult as the Baldface Loop but is just as interesting. As I've said many times, its the perfect place for an uncrowded summer hike in the White Mountains!
Read. Plan. Get Out There!