Friday, June 19, 2020

New Hampshire's 52 With A View - A Hiker's Guide (2nd Edition)

Ken MacGray  Writer, Author, Hiker has recently released his "New Hampshire's 52 With A View - A Hiker's Guide (2nd Edition)".  

It is a comprehensive guidebook for the New Hampshire 52 With A View hiking list, and it is a fantastic resource! 

To get your copy, or for more information, please check out Ken's website at

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

52 With a View gets updated

May 26, 2020

Dear Hikers,
In 1991 a group of dedicated Over the Hills Hikers formulated a list of some of the most rewarding view hikes in New Hampshire on peaks with elevations below 4,000 feet. When combined with the forty-eight 4000-footers, this list represented what the OTHH’s considered the best 100 hikes in our mountains.  Thus the “52 With a View” list was born.
As trees grew and views changed, the list was revisited every ten years or so.  In 2001 Carr was replaced by Black in Jackson.  In 2010 Mt. Wolf was “retired” in favor of Mt. Roberts.
Currently, several additional peaks have lost their views.  A small group of OTHH volunteers reviewed feedback from our own group, from the very active 52WAV Facebook community, and solicited input from experts Ken MacGray, author of the new 52 With A View Guidebook, and Steven Smith of Mountain Wanderer Books in Lincoln. Below we list the five peaks we will “retire” from the list and the five that will take their place.
Selection process:
The “rules” we applied are not stringent but did help us narrow our focus.  Peaks needed to be:

1.     in New Hampshire
2.     have an elevation close to a minimum of 2,500 feet
3.     have an interesting hike and,
4.     of course, have a view!

To be retired:  1.    Black Mountain in Jackson
2.    Iron Mountain
3.     Square Ledge
4.     Hibbard
5.     West Royce

To add:            1.   Morgan (2,220 feet. Squam Range. Can be done in a loop with Percival)
2.     Percival (2,212 feet. Squam Range. Can be done in a loop with Morgan)
3.     Pine Mountain (2,404 feet. Recommend accessing via trail from Gorham)
4.     Roger's Ledge (2,965 feet. Kilkenny Ridge Trail)
5.     Table Mountain (2,610 feet. Attitash Trail)

Combined/added:  We will also combine North Doublehead & South Doublehead.  North Doublehead has lost a lot of its view, but by combining it with South we can leave it on the list and add something new.  So, this will be listed like Welch-Dickey, as a loop.

How Do I Track Now?
“What if I am part way through my list and have done some or all of the “retired” hikes? Do I now have to add five new ones and end up with 57?”, you may ask.
The answer is no! Just keep going until you hit 52 in any combination of prior and new peaks.
·      If you have already done all the ones we are retiring, congratulations!  When you finish the rest submit your list like that and we will send you a patch.
·      If you haven’t done any of the peaks we are retiring, skip them and add the new ones.
·      If you have completed some of the five “retirees” but not all, skip the ones you haven’t done yet and pick out the same number of new ones to replace them - your choice!
Our Thanks:
Thank you to everyone who made suggestions of peaks to retire and peaks to add. 
Special thanks to Ken MacGray and Steven Smith.
And extra special thanks to our task force volunteers:
Susan Allen
Pam Alexander
Deb Guyer
David Kiley and Moose
Tracy Ripkey
Doug Wright


Please let me know if you have any other questions.  I can be reached at 503-577-5448 or via email at

Happy Hiking!

Cathy Crooker
For the Over the Hill Hikers
Sandwich, NH

Special Note for Summer 2020:
We know it is exciting to see some new hikes on the 52WAV list. And while we are happy to share this update with you, during the continuing COVID crisis we ask that you continue to heed all local, state and federal guidelines to keep yourselves and others safe.  We encourage you to continue to hike close to home and practice appropriate social distancing both on the trails and on your way to-and-from.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Hiking the 52 WAV during "stay at home orders" and COVID 19 pandamic

Many years ago, when the Over the Hill Hikers created the 52 With a View list most hikers who completed the challenge were local.  The list was not well known beyond our little band here in central New Hampshire.  In the years since with the advent of internet & social media, and the publication of great guidebooks things have changed and the hikes have gained in popularity. 

And now, in times of a COVID 19 pandemic, stay at home orders, and social distancing things have changed even further.  Thankfully, the current restrictions will be temporary, though we don't know exactly what "temporary" means.

After much thought, the Over the Hill Hikers have decided NOT to exclude hikes people may complete at this time from your lists.

First, we are a small group of volunteers and do not have the bandwidth to check your final lists when they are submitted to make sure the hikes did not happen during this current period.

Second, we put the responsibility on each hiker to consider the point of the stay at home order issued by our Governor and local officials.  We always assume hikers will hike within their abilities, and during these uncertain times will be responsible to themselves and others, and so will hike close to home, adhering to social distancing guidelines and other pertinent considerations such as trail conditions, weather, and their current physical abilities, etc.  

Please take the time to carefully consider the risks, and judge the hike with the consideration of Search and Rescue workers and first responders who are stressed in our current health crises. 

The trails will continue to be there now, and in the future, so please hike responsibly.  

We’re all in this together. 
Sincerely, The Over the Hill Hikers

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

2020 Hiking season

Hello friends and hikers,

It is so difficult to know how long we will be "socially distancing" and adhering to state and CDC recommendations.  But I do know, that our demographics of the Over the Hill Hikers puts us in a category to be cautious and apply our collective wisdom.  So, in saying that, I am putting our start of the official 2020 hiking season "ON HOLD" until we get an "all clear" from Governor Sununu and other health officials.   

I realize that we will likely continue to enjoy the beauty of our "backyards" whether on a local neighborhood walk, or on the mountain or hill just down the road so long as we are able.  Perhaps you will be solo, or with a friend or two while keeping an appropriate distance.  But it is best for us to put the organized hikes aside for now.  I appreciate your understanding.  We will continue to work on our 2020 hiking season schedules, and as we learn more, additional emails will be sent out.  

Thank you.


Tracy Ripkey

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Winter Hike Whiteface & Passaconaway

On Wednesday, March 18, Larry and Doug hiked to Whiteface (4019) and Passaconaway (4043) in the Sandwich Wilderness. The weather was superb; bright blue sky, no wind, temperature in the mid to upper 30s. We started from the parking lot on Ferncroft Road, hiked up using the Blueberry Ledge Trail to the Whiteface summit, across the ridge along the Rollins Trail to the Passaconaway summit and back down on the Dicey's Mill Trail. The trail had plenty of snow that was fairly well packed down. As long as we stayed on the center of the trail we didn't post hole.

The only issue we had was that the snow would clump together under the micro spikes. Sometimes there would be 4 to 6 inches of snow stuck to the bottom of our hiking boots. It made for slow and uncomfortable hiking until we were headed down and could take the spikes off. We want to ask the more experienced expert winter hikers if there is an alternative.

The views were superb. From the ledges on Whiteface, everything to the south was visible. Ossipee Lake, Winnipesaukee, the Belknaps including Gunstock, Ragged Mtn., Sunapee and Tenney Mtn. ski areas. Other vantage points provided views of Washington and the southern Presidentials, the Wildcats and Carter Dome and Chocorua.

The four pictures below were all taken from near the summit of Passaconaway. The pictures scan from the west, to northwest to north.

The picture below looks toward the west. From left to right are Sandwich Dome, Jennings Peak, Waterville Valley ski area and Tecumseh.

The picture below looks toward the northwest. From left to right are Waterville Valley and Tecumseh in the background and the three Tripyramids in the foreground. If you zoom in near the Middle Tripyramid, the snow capped summit of Moosilauke is just barely visible. Behind the North Tripyramid are the Osceolas.

The picture below also looks toward the northwest. From left to right are the two Kinsmans, the Flume and the snow capped Franconia Ridge. Owls Head is below Lafayette and Garfield is to the right of Lafayette. The last summit to the right is Carrigain and then the Signal Ridge. The Bonds, the Twins and the Hancocks might be visible in between Garfield and Carrigain but are difficult to pick out.

The picture below looks toward the north. From left to right are Carrigain again, Webster (above the Webster cliffs), the snow capped dome of Eisenhower and of course Washington.

Since Friday March 20 marks the first full day of Spring, this hike was our last "official" winter hike. We intend to continue hiking in April so please contact Doug if you are interested.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Snowshoe events

Our snowshoe events are very popular, so our group size has been limited, but those that are able to join us have a great time.  The locations always impress us, but mostly the soup and goodies following are the hit of the day.  Thank you to all that are a part of this, from the hosts, coordination, and planning, it's all so appreciated. 

Lee's Pond and the Loon Center snowshoe 

Chapman Wildlife Sanctuary snowshoe

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

getting started at winter hiking

A few Over The Hill Hikers are getting started with some winter hiking. If you are interested in winter hiking, please email Doug or Tracy.

Here's some photos from our recent trip (January 7th) up Mt. Roberts. We had a couple inches of fresh snow overnight, but the earlier hikers had packed down the trail for us, so it was smooth sailing up to the top.