Orford, New Hampshire

Nestled in the picturesque landscape of Orford, New Hampshire, Mount Cube stands as one of the first major mountains encountered on the Appalachian Trail.

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About This Location

Nestled in the picturesque landscape of Orford, New Hampshire, Mount Cube stands as one of the first major mountains encountered by intrepid hikers on the Appalachian Trail journeying north into the state. Enveloped by a narrow strip of the White Mountain National Forest, extending south to preserve the pristine surroundings of the AT, Mount Cube rises somewhat solitary in a pastoral region adorned with lakes, showcasing the quintessential charm of Southern New Hampshire.

At an elevation of 2,909 feet, Mount Cube boasts expansive ledges crafted from quartzite at its summit. With a clean prominence of 849 feet, these ledges offer breathtaking panoramic views of southern New Hampshire and eastern Vermont. From the summit, gaze upon the flat stretches of Vermont, adorned with tiny hills and villages, while the New Hampshire horizon dominates with the imposing presence of Mt. Cardigan, Mt. Kearsarge, and Croydon Peak. Notably, the wooded ridge of neighboring Smarts Mountain adds a majestic touch to the scenic tableau. Such mesmerizing vistas have earned Mount Cube the prestigious ranking of number 35 on the New Hampshire 52 with a View, a compilation of the 52 New Hampshire mountains offering the most spectacular views.

For those eager to conquer Mount Cube, two main trails beckon. The first is the Mount Cube via the Appalachian Trail, a 6.8-mile out-and-back trail featuring 2,162 feet of elevation gain. This iconic Appalachian Trail section is well-marked and well-maintained, conveniently located right off NH Route 25A highway, providing easy parking access.

Alternatively, the Mount Cube via Cross Rivendell Trail offers a slightly shorter 4.9-mile out-and-back trek with 1,601 feet of elevation gain. The trailhead is located along Baker Road in Orford, accessible via a narrow dirt road, providing a different but equally rewarding route to the summit.

Ideal for exploration from May to October, Mount Cube warmly welcomes canine companions on-leash. Many visitors particularly relish hiking in the fall, captivated by New Hampshire's spectacular autumn foliage. Regardless of the season, a journey to Mount Cube promises an enriching outdoor experience, surrounded by the natural splendor of New Hampshire's landscape.

Location Features

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Orford, New Hampshire

GPS Coordinates:
43.885639, -72.023250
Directions to location:
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Directions to parking area:
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Parking Notes:
The is plenty of roadside parking along NH-25A at the Mount Cube trailhead. The parking area is very lowkey and not well marked, so be sure to check out the parking directions.


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