Catamount Hill
Bear Brook State Park

Mountain:  Catamount Hill (721')
Trails:  Bear Brook Trail, Connector Trail, Catamount Hill Trail, Shortcut Trail, One Mile Road
Region:  NH - Southeast  
Bear Brook State Park
Location:  Allenstown, NH
Rating:  Easy/Moderate  
Features:  Summit, views, brooks, loop hike
Distance:  2.3 miles  
Elevation Gain:  450 feet (cumulative)  
Hiking Time:  Typical: 1:20  
Outing Duration:  Actual: 2:15   Typical: 2:00  
Season:  Winter
Hike Date:  01/01/2009 (Thursday)  
Weather:  11 degrees, very windy
Author:  Deb Hann
Companions:  Eight SDHers, 2 dogs

The trail croses a brook via a nice bridge (photo by Deb Hann)


Route Summary   

This is a short hike to Catamount Hill, from which there are some views, in Bear Brook State Park. If you're willing to explore farther after tackling the 721-foot peak, the state park offers a 40-mile trail network for you to use up all your energy on.

  • Start on Bear Brook Trail which leaves the park's main road opposite the Catamount Pond recreation area.
  • Walk for 0.3 mile then Bear Brook Trail turns left and Connector Trail goes straight.
  • Go straight to follow Connector Trail for 0.1 mile until it hits One Mile Road (a trail).
  • Cross One Mile Road, veering slightly to the left to pick up Catamount Hill Trail.
  • Catamount Hill Trail will bring you to the summit of Catamount Hill. Be sure to bear left at the junction with Catamount West Trail which you will encounter near the very beginning.
  • After 0.8 mile on Catamount Hill Trail you will arrive at the summit with views from semi-open ledges. You will also encounter views during your climb up.
  • Continue on Catamount Hill Trail, descending steeply, for 0.1 mile until you reach the end of Catamount Hill Trail and the junction with Shortcut Trail and Cascade Trail.
  • Stay straight/left to descend on Shortcut Trail for 0.3 mile until it meets One Mile Road.
  • Turn left on One Mile Road and follow it for 0.3 mile which will return you to the spot where Catamount Hill Trail and Connector Trail meet One Mile Road from opposite sides. Be watching for this junction since One Mile Road continues straight ahead. Here you want to turn right onto Connector Trail.
  • Follow Connector Trail for 0.1 mile where it will meet Bear Brook Trail.
  • Go straight on Bear Brook Trail (Bear Brook Trail also goes to the right) to return to the parking area after 0.3 mile.

Stay overnight in a tipi - Tipi Lodging
 

Junction at Shortcut Trail (photo by Deb Hann) SDH bundled up on the trail (photo by Deb Hann)

 
 
Place         Split
Miles
     Total
Miles
State Park Road (300') 0.0 0.0
Catamount Hill (721') 1.2 1.2
State Park Road (300') 1.1 2.3
 
 



Brian on the trail (photo by Mark Malnati)

 

Trail map of hike route to Catamount Hill in Bear Brook State Park (map by Webmaster)


Trail Guide   

This was a snowshoe hike in Bear Brook State Park. We hiked the Catamount Trail, which is described as a family walk to a low summit. The trails are generally easy, but moderate up Catamount Hill. This is a good hike for all and a nice chance to break in new winter gear.

On January first, eight hardy hikers and two dogs braved sub-zero wind chills to ring in the New Year. We left Bear Brook State Park parking lot around 10:00 a.m. after taking some time to don all our winter layers.

After starting off in the wrong direction, we headed for Catamount Trail. I just wanted to move; I didn't care what direction. As long as we kept moving, we were warm. The winds were howling, and we were thankful for any protection the trees provided. The trail blazes were hard to see, and we weren't really sure what trail we were on (that's my story and I'm sticking to it!).

SDH on the trail (photo by Deb Hann)


Thanks Faye for bringing a good map and your orienteering skills! After breaking trail all the way up Catamount Hill Trail, we opted to head down via Shortcut Trail which followed a brook. We had originally planned on doing a wider loop descending via Cascade Trail but with the cold and the wind we didn't want to get too far off track and risk wandering onto a path that would lead us many miles away from our vehicles.

Cheryl provided some comic relief after her water bottle leaked and formed icicles down her backpack and the hem of her jacket as testimony to the 11-15 degree temps! We arrived back at the parking lot 2+ hours later happy to warm up our cars and seek shelter from the wind.
 
Cheryl on the trail (photo by Mark Malnati)


White Mountains elegant vacation rental
 

Deb (photo by Mark Malnati) Quincy and Tessa (photo by Deb Hann) Claudette (photo by Deb Hann)

 


NH - Southeast

  Driving Directions   

The parking area for this hike is located in Bear Brook State Park in Allenstown, New Hampshire.

From Rt. 4:
  • From the Epsom Traffic Circle, take Rt. 28 South.
  • Travel on Rt. 28 South for 5.6 miles.
  • Turn left onto Bear Brook Road which runs through the state park and is marked by a large sign. This road is also knows as Allenstown-Deerfield Road or State Park Road.
  • After about a mile you will reach the park's tollbooth on the right.
  • Park in the large parking lot on the left immediately past the tollbooth.

From Rt. 3:
  • From the junction of Routes 3 and 28 in Suncook, take Rt. 28 North.
  • Travel on Rt. 28 North for 3.0 miles.
  • Turn right onto Bear Brook Road which runs through the state park and is marked by a large sign. This road is also knows as Allenstown-Deerfield Road or State Park Road.
  • After about a mile you will reach the park's tollbooth on the right.
  • Park in the large parking lot on the left immediately past the tollbooth.
  Icicles on Chery's jacket (photo by Mark Malnati)
 

Trail (photo by Mark Malnati) SDH (photo by Mark Malnati)

 
  Facilities   

In season: picnic area, swimming, campground, bathrooms.

Other Notes   

A small per-person fee is charged in season.

Some of the trails in the park, such as One Mile Road, are used by snowmobiliers in the winter so remember to use caution and share the trails carefully.
 
 

SDH on the trail (photo by Mark Malnati) SDH on the trail (photo by Mark Malnati)

 

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