Located within the Sandwich Range Wilderness, Mt. Whiteface has south facing cliffs and ledges which offer sweeping views of Lake Winnepesauke and Squam Lake. Other ledges offer views towards Mt. Washington and Mt. Chocorua, and well into Maine. From the false summit there are views to the Tripyramids and other peaks to the west.
This is a popular climb, but you will not find the trail crowded. Combined with neighboring Mt. Passaconaway (4043 ft.), one can do a nice 11.9 mile loop which offers 3900 feet of climbing and which will take around 8 hours. Mt. Whiteface is the 45th highest peak in New Hampshire.
The trails are moderate and well maintained, except where the Blueberry Ledge Trail approaches the peak. Here there are several scrambles over the rocky ledges. Inexperienced or timid hikers may find these challenging, and they will be tricky in wet or icy conditions.
NOTE: The uppermost rocky ledge is NOT the peak. You must follow the Rollins Trail about .3 miles north to reach the actual summit.
Blueberry Ledge Trail
. This is the most popular trail from the Ferncroft parking area. Moderate grades to the ledges, then a scramble over ledges to the top. From Ferncroft Rd. to the summit ledges, 3.9 miles, 2850 foot ascent.
. This is the ridge trail connecting Mt. Whiteface to the Dicey's Mill Trail and Mt. Passaconaway. From the summit ledges on Whiteface, 2.5 miles to Dicey's Mill Trail, then .9 miles up Dicey's Mill Trail to the summit of Mt. Passaconaway. If combining Mt. Whiteface and Mt. Passaconaway, the Dicey's Mill Trail completes the loop back to the Ferncroft Rd. parking area. This leg of the trail is 3.7 miles from the junction of the Rollins Trail to the parking area.
Kate Sleeper Trail
runs from the Mt. Whiteface summit ledges at the intersection of the Blueberry Ledge Trail and Rollins Trail, west to the Tripyramid Trail, 3.9 miles.
The McCrillis Trail
approaches Whiteface from the south, running 4.9 miles from Intervale Road via the Flat Mountain Pond Trail.
The Blueberry Ledge Cutoff Trail
and the Tom Wiggin Trail
offer alternative loops connecting to the Blueberry Ledge Trail.
Take Route 113A to Wonalancet; where the road makes a right angle turn; turn north onto Ferncroft Road (sign is more visible when traveling towards the west). You can't miss the parking area on the right where there is ample free parking. The trailhead is to the right out of the parking lot and is well marked. An outhouse is available at the parking area.
No permits, passes, or parking fees required.
When To Climb
As with all of the Whites, Mt. Whiteface is a four season experience. However, the ledges on the Blueberry Ledge Trail will require some technical skills when icy, and crampons and snowshoes will be required equipment in season. And, as always, prepare yourself for changing weather.
Former camps along the ridge of Mt. Whiteface have been removed, and camping at the higher elevations is discouraged. Camp Rich on the Dicey's Mill Trail at 3500 feet on Mt. Passaconaway has been removed, but the latrine reportedly is still present (per AMC Guidebook). Nice spots for camping are evident along the Wonalancet River. Check with the White Mountain National Forest officials for the latest on Forest Protection Areas.
Current conditions are available from the Mt. Washington Observatory. Check the Higher Summits Forecast
Current New Hampshire Trail Conditions: Views From The Top
Numerous White Mountain resources: Appalachian Mountain Club