Franconia Notch State Park, Franconia

4.8
Franconia Notch State Park is located in the White Mountains in northern New Hampshire, United States, and straddles 8 miles (13 km) of Interstate 93 as it passes through Franconia Notch, a mountain pass between the Kinsman Range and Franconia Range. Attractions in the state park include the Flume Gorge and visitor center, the Old Man of the Mountain historical site, fishing in Echo Lake and Profile Lake, and miles of hiking, biking and ski trails. The northern part of the park, including Cannon Mountain and Echo and Profile lakes, is in the town of Franconia, and the southern part, including Lonesome Lake and the Flume, is in Lincoln.

The park is home to Cannon Mountain, a state-owned ski resort started in the 1930s. The mountain is named for a rock formation in the shape of a cannon found on the summit, but the "Old Man of the Mountain" formation was by far the more famous; it collapsed in May 2003. Cannon is also famous for being one of the most challenging hills in New England. It boasts an aerial tram, which runs year-round, ferrying sightseers to the summit in the summer time and skiers in the winter. At the base of the tramway is the New England Ski Museum, with exhibits on the history of alpine skiing in New England and America.

On the west side of the notch, halfway up the side of Cannon Mountain, is Lonesome Lake, an easy day hike up the Lonesome Lake Trail from the state park's Lafayette Place campground. The Lonesome Lake Hut, one of numerous well-kept huts throughout the White Mountains that are maintained by the Appalachian Mountain Club, is found at the southwest end of the lake, near its outlet. Huts offer meals and lodging (reservations are recommended).

Opposite Cannon Mountain, on the east side of the notch, are the Eagle Cliffs, so named for the eagles that sometimes roost there. The Greenleaf Trail, a hiking trail, winds around the south side of the cliff and up to Greenleaf Hut, another AMC hut. East of Greenleaf Hut and outside the state park is the 5,249-foot (1,600 m) summit of Mount Lafayette and the Franconia Ridge Trail (also the Appalachian Trail). The Appalachian Trail continues north to Mount Washington and eventually to Mount Katahdin in Maine.

Beneath a waterfall in the Pemigewasset River is a granite pothole about 20 feet (6 m) across known simply as "the Basin". It was scrubbed out by stones dragged (and eventually deposited) by the retreating North American ice sheet, and since made smooth by 15 millennia of rapidly whirling pebbles and grit. Below the Basin is "Old Man's Foot", a distinctively shaped rock formation, also the natural result of Pemigewasset's erosive energy.
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Franconia Notch State Park Reviews

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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5.0
636 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • Its a great walk, its a beautiful forest, the adventure is worth every second. This is such a special spot. We went in the pouring rain and still loved every minute of our walk.  more »
  • The notch and surrounding area are spectacular and wonderful areas for hiking and viewing the scenery . Trials are well marked and fun for the entire family. Loved the Flume. The town of Lincoln...  more »
  • Absolutely amazing around here with such stunnig scenery and different places to stop and explore. The whole White Mountains area is amazing and should be explored - there is so much that's easily...  more »
Google
  • Lots of great places, trails and waterfalls to visit. The primary attraction is the Flume Gorge (the trail is around 2 miles or so which is very beautiful specially during fall season), Cannon Mountain (Ride the arial tramway to the summit. The scenery is beautiful), Echo Lake (offers spectacular views of the mountains and a nice place to do kayaking), Old Man of the Mountain (long gone). Entry fee to Flume Gorge is $16 or you can get a discovery pass for $31 that also includes the Cannon Ariel Tramway.
  • Great views especially on a clear day. Definitely worth it for able ages who can climb a few stairs. Make sure to bring hiking shoes. Most of the employees were nice. The concessions was not worth the money so eat before hand or eat right after. You're able to buy one way tickets to the top and you can hike down or buy round trip tickets.
  • Love this place. Such wonderful scenery. I have been coming here since I was a little kid. This is now one of many trips I have taken my own kids here to see this place. So peaceful and well maintained. Please come here and enjoy the views.
  • Amazing place. Wow. What a great place to go. Everyone should get up there once in your life, at least. I will be making this a regular yearly thing now. My kids loved it and it was beautiful. Not to mention historical and lots of memories can be made in these types of places. I can't wait to go back and take a lot more pictures. So beyond the look out for more additional pictures from Franconia Notch State Park!
  • Clean beauty at its most Majestic. Gods glory is on full display. The peaks are bare top. These hikes require you to be in good physical condition. Do not attempt unless you are. The views are worth the hike to the top. There are many geological sites in this rather Condensed area. Just beautiful.

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