VIA SANDWICH MOUNTAIN AND DRAKES BROOK TRAILHEAD: From I-93 get off onto Route 49 toward Waterville Valley. Stay on Route 49 past the town of Campton and up through the gap between Sandwich Mountain and Welch and Dickey Mountain. Continue up the road eleven mile to the trailhead which is on the right, just before the town of Waterville Valley.
Drakes Brook (to Sandwich Mountain Trail)
Elevation Gain 2680 ft.
A less popular route then the Sandwich Mountain Trail, The Drakes Trail is easier alternative to the Sandwich Mountain Trail. The trail stays at Class 1 throughout the entire trip and has decent footing throughout. What route is missing in dramatic view from Noon Peak, it makes up in beautiful waterfalls.
The trail start at the Drakes Brook Trail and ascends a ski trail/logging road. At 0.4 miles the trails head right and crosses Drakes Brook. Use Caution at this crossing. It is just as difficult as the Sandwich Mountain Trail
. The trail then gradually climbs up drakes brook and pitches that very from level to moderate would good footing. The cascades can be view on the left of the trail. The trail then at 2.6 miles leaves Drakes Brook and ascends up the ravine at moderate to steeper (sitll Class 1) pitches to the Sandwich Mountain Trail. Ascend the Sandwich Mountain Trail up gradual to moderate grades to the summit of Sandwich Mountain.
In summer only essential gear is required. In winter this trail would make a great snowshoe trail. However the the intersects with a ski trail and might require a ski permit.
For a better all around adventure ascend the Sandwich Mountain Trail and descend using this trail. Total loop hike is 8.3 miles not including an addtional 0.4 miles roundtrip from Jennings Peak.