The view from atop Mt. Cube, December 2007. Photo credit: Phil Wagner '09
Mount Cube, with open ledges on its north and south peaks, commands views both back down the valley towards Hanover and ahead to Mount Moosilauke and the White Mountains beyond. This is the northern end of the long ridge stretching north from South Moose Mountain that forms the eastern edge of the Connecticut River valley. The pinkish-gray summit rocks are quartzite, the same hard ridge-forming rock that runs in a band from Lebanon, over Moose, up Lambert Ridge, and on to Cube. On warm days, the summit ledges of Mount Cube are excellent lunch spots. Be sure to sample the wild blueberries in late summer
Take Route 10 north out of Hanover, through Lyme, and into Orford. Just before reaching the green in Orford, turn right onto Route 25A East. Pass through Orfordville in 2.5 miles and continue up the northern shoulder of Mount Cube, whose summit ledges are visible above the trees. After 8.3 miles, at the height-of-land, pass Mount Cube Farm and former governor Mel Thompsonâ€™s famous pancake house. Continue on Route 25A and descend steeply to Upper Baker Pond. Just before crossing a steel highway bridge, 10.2 miles from Orford, the AT south leaves from the right hand side of the road. Park in the parking lot across the bridge
Take the AT south from 25A, crossing the unbridged Brackett Brook about a mile and a half in. A little over three miles in is the beautiful summit. Return to your car by the same trail.
Dartmouth Outing Guide
Advice & Anecdotes
Look out for Brackett Brook - it may be impassible in the spring or when water levels are high.
You might want to advertise this as Moderate if you do it in the winter. My trip on 2/6/2010 took 5.5 hours with a lunch break, going at a pretty slow pace due to snow & ice. There are a lot of stream crossings to watch out for, you may have to search up and down the streams for safe places to cross. On this trip, the streams were all very, very thickly frozen over, even Brackett Brook, due to the very cold weather. Views and the coniferous forest at the summit are incredible! -Jessie
Mt. Cube is in relatively good condition, though there are some muddy sections, but no blowdowns. We had a nice hike and probably went 2/3 of the way up while taking photos. The trail is in good use as several parties past us. Beware, the downloadable map on USGS is from the early 90s, and is incorrect. Enjoy the trail!