Tip Toe's Guided Tour through the RMC Trail System : Mount Adams

Date of Hike: 10/12/15

The Link: 4.0 miles / Cabin-Cascades Trail: 1.0 miles / Log Cabin Cutoff: 0.3 miles / Randolph Path: 0.4 miles / Spur Trail: 0.3 miles / Hincks Trail: 0.7 miles / Gray Knob Trail: 1.2 miles / Israel Ridge, Gulfside, Lowe's Path: 1.5 miles / Lowes Path: 0.3 miles / Spur Trail: 2.0 miles / Randolph Path: 1.2 miles / Beechwood Way: 1.0 miles / Sylvan Way: 0.7 miles / Maple Walk: 0.2 miles
Total Miles: 15.7 (5,200 feet elevation gained) Garmin Forerunner 910XT

Trip Report:
- On Columbus Day Whitney wanted to do some red-lining on the way up to Mount Adams so we headed to Appalachia to start our hike along The Link.  The Randolph Mountaineering Club has cut an amazing trail system through the ravines and along the ridges below the Northern Presidential Range.  If there's a cascade, waterfall, viewpoint, etc., the RMC found it and put a trail past it.
- The weather made for a perfect Autumn day as we made our way to the Cabin-Cascades Trail.  The lower section of The Link was a joy to walk along as the footing is tame here compared to the upper section.  Whitney managed to see a bear that was minding it's own business when she startled it and it quickly slid down and ran off through the woods.
- Before linking onto the Cabin-Cascades Trail we took a mini detour up to the second Cascade along the Israel Ridge Trail, this is a great spot with a really nice view, a perfect spot to hang out.
- The Cabin-Cascades Trail is marked as one mile long but seems longer as it cuts across a side hill for most of it's length.  The trail doesn't have much for highlights, there was a spongy mossy section which was the only interesting part but other than that it's probably a trail neither of us will ever revisit.
- We took a break at the Log Cabin before heading to the Spur Trail where ascended steeply up for a few tenths of a mile before continuing steeply up the Hincks Trail.  After reaching the Gray Knob Cabin we headed above treeline via the Gray Knob Trail.  While the trail is in the Alpine Zone it's roughly cut as it slowly ascends along the side of the ravine where The Perch is located below.  The footing is pretty awkward and we both had a few slip ups but no falls.  I was expecting a little more from this trail and in the future I'd probably just stick to Lowe's Path on the way up or down since it has wide open views as it drops from the ridge.
- When the Gray Knob Trail ended we hooked onto the Israel Ridge Trail, which was a magnificent hike up to the spine that makes up the ridge that runs along the Northern Presidential Range.
- We were both in t-shirts as we headed north towards the summit of Mount Adams.  October weather in the White Mountains is really a crap shoot, one day it could be raining, spitting ice, and snowing, while the next day it's fifty degrees out with barely any wind.  When the Whites give you a break in the weather this time of year you head above treeline!
- On the summit area of Mount Adams we found a little grassy patch about ten feet below the summit and relaxed for a good half hour plus.  Whitney took a short nap while I tried to zoom in with her camera at the knee of Mount Jefferson to see if I could get a long range shot of the ladders of the Six Husbands Trail.  The knee was in the shade but I was able to capture a few pictures albeit a little fuzzy.
- Our route down was just as fun as our route up, first we headed down the Spur Trail.  This trail, just like the Gray Knob Trail parallels Lowe's Path but on the northern side.  It has the usual rocky footing but much better views than Gray Knob, and passes by Knight's Castle which has tremendous views into King Ravine.  The other highlight is the trail passes by Crag Camp, a nice cabin that sits perched on the ridge a thousand plus feet above King Ravine.  I took a nice break here while Whitney scooted up and then back along the Gray Knob Trail to Gray Knobby Cabin for red-lining purposes.
- Now it was time for the descent back to Appalachia which we had fun with.  We hooked onto Randolph Path to Valley Way to Beechwood Way.  Beechwood Way passed by a majority of the Maple Lines that run from Maple tree to Maple tree to a small shack near Cold Brook.  It a bizarre sight to see in the middle of the woods and definitely a place a moose would not want to venture into or it would get clothes-lined.
- Our last two trails back to the Appalachia were Sylvan Way and Maple Walk.  Sylvan way had some of the most stunning birch and maple foliage I've ever seen.  I couldn't believe there was such a beautiful spot nestled in the woods, once again this is credit to the RMC who found every attraction in the woods and put a trail through it.
- We finally made it back to the Jeep about an hour before sunset and made our way up to Gorham for a yummy dinner before heading back to North Conway.  I'm already looking forward to heading back into the trails that the RMC cut from Appalachia.  It's a very unique spot with multiple types of terrain, the woods in the valley are open and soft but soon transition to some of the thickest woods as it climbs in elevation before breaking above treeline to the jumbled boulder field on the range.  What a great spot to experience all kinds of exciting hiking in one day and very soon I'll be living within ten miles of all this excitement as at the end of the month I will call the White Mountains my home!! :)

Hiking along the lower end of The Link by the maple shack

Cold Brook Bridge

The old stone bridge over Cold Brook

 Whitney heads through a nice stretch of colorful woods

Making our way along The Link

Before jumping onto the Cabin-Cascades Trail we make a side trip to the second cascade on the Isreal Ridge Trail

Crappy old ladder steps below the cascade and then heading along the rough Cabin-Cascades Trail

The Cabin-Cascades Trail is blanketed with spongy moss in spots.  It's pretty but ends up soaking your feet if you're not careful with foot placement

 The Log Cabin, looks like a real nice spot to spend the night!

 Heading down Randolph Path and then passing a small waterfall with a nice gem pool on one of the many trails in this area

Chandler Fall, not falls but fall!

We finally hit some steep rugged terrain as we make our way up to Gray Knob Cabin

Gray Knob Cabin

View from the Quay

Kilkenny Range off in the distance

Mount Jefferson and the Castellated Ridge 

There are two specks in the picture, a plane and a glider.  All day there were planes flying in towing gliders, there would be as many as four in the air at one time.

Heading up the Isreal Ridge Trail.  We both really enjoyed this rock garden path

Hiking along the ridge to Mount Adams

Whitney makes her way along the Gulfside Trail

Looking back towards Mount Jefferson and Washington

Whitney takes in the phenomenal views from Mount Adams

While Whitney napped I zoomed in to try and find the ladders of the Six Husbands Trail across Jefferson Ravine

I was happy to successfully capture the ladders with a little digital camera.  A better camera could catch this image more clearly and make for one heck of s shot!  

 Heading past Thunderstorm Junction and down the Spur Trail

What a view from the Spur Trail

Mount Madison and King Ravine

View from Knight's Castle down to Randolph

Whitney enjoying the Ravine of a King

Crag Camp

It's a really great spot and was deserted when we stopped on by

Heading back down and passing some more interesting spots along the way

Coldbrook Falls

Sylvan Way and it's colorful birch and maple woods

Presidential Range Rail Trail

Passing back under the power line clearing at Appalachia 

Signs spotted along the way.  The RMC has so many intersectng trails that it seems like the trail comes across one every few tenths of a mile

Signs spotted along the way, part two 

Signs spotted along the way, part three

Signs spotted along the way, part four

Signs spotted along the way, part five

Route for the day, click here for details


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Jim, glad you like the pictures. They're always fun to look at after the hike and put in collages for the trip report.

  2. Awesome pics ! Sounds like a lot of places not a lot of people see, except for red liners. Congratulations on your move ! Pretty sweet to live up in the White Mountains ! - Wendy

    1. Thanks, Wendy. It was definitely fun winding our way up to Adams over some lesser used trails. There are so many in the area, we both needed to double check the map at times to make sure we knew where to turn next!

      I can't wait for the move, should be interesting to be a resident in the heart of the White Mountains :)

  3. DAMN!!!! What a great day! And you're going to live 10 miles from that area! Good for you, happy for ya!

    1. Thanks, Becki!! Hope you and Prema have been getting out and enjoying the foliage this fall :)