Liberty & Flume (hike)
- Driving Distance: 70 miles
- Hiking Distance: 10 miles
- Difficulty Level: Strenuous
Take 91 North from Hanover, get off at Fairlee and take 25A to 25 to 118 as you would to go to the Lodge. Continue on 118 past the lodge until it ends at 112. Take the right fork to get on to 112 north, which you will follow to I-93 North. Take I-93 to the Franconia Notch and park at the Liberty/Flume Trailhead parking lot (AT).
Follow the Liberty Springs Trail (AT) a short distance to its fork. Stay right to climb the Flume Slide trail. This trail is very steep, and scary at spots. The steepest section is less than a half-mile, but plan for it to take a very long time, especially with a large trip. At the top is the summit of Mt Flume, and the Franconia Ridge trail. Head north on the ridge trail to the summit of Liberty, with some nice views of it's own, then down the Liberty Springs Trail back to the trailhead.
White Mountain Guide
Advice & Anecdotes
The Flume slide is extremely steep and rocky. Do not attempt to descend it, or to ascend if conditions are wet, icy, or otherwise not so nice.
12/08/2011 (Wheatstarch) Leader: Kyle Heppenstall '13
Number of Trippees and Names: (5) - Jen, Krystyna, David Rice, Claire, Max
Weather: teens to 20s
Snow conditions: one to two inches along the Pemi then up to 6 inches near the summit
Times: It took us around 8 hours total but I do not remember any specifics.
Mileages (routes): Lincoln Woods trailhead along the railroad (1.5 miles) then up and down the Osseo Tr (4 miles each way) = 11 miles total hiking
Trail Notes: Mainly just packed snow, little ice, windy and cold around the summit where there are not trees. The path along the old railroad was muddy with no snow.
Gear Brought: Microspikes, gaiters, poles, zero degree bag, sleeping pad, handwarmers, overmittens
Gear Used: gaiters, poles, handwarmers, overmittens
Logistics: paved parking lot, bikes or skis could be appropriate for the first 1.5 miles along the railroad, long but moderate hike with amazing summit and a great introduction to what it can be like above tree line in the winter
Leaders: Jocelyn Powelson and Kassie Amann
Number of Trippees: 5
Weather: Freezing but clear. Really windy near the summit (extra layers needed).
Snow conditions: Packed and groomed along the Lincoln Woods rail and un-tracked and deep along the summit.
Details: We left at 7:30 AM and returned around dinner time. We took the Lincoln Woods trail from the Lincoln Woods trailhead, skiing the about 1.5 miles in, and then joined the Osseo trail, which was skiable for a short distance. We ditched our skiis when the mountain became steep, and later ditched our snowshoes as the trail was packed enough that they were more of a hinderance than a help. Because of this, we later did some post-holing, but it wasn't unmanageable without snowshoes. Gaiters were definitely necessary, as was proper snow gear and layers.
Leaders: Anna Knowles and Acacia Hoisington
Number of Trippees: 5
Weather: Clear and a little chilly.
Route: Took the Flume Slide Trail up and the Liberty Spring Trail down. 9.8 miles in all with a 3700 ft elevation gain
Details: DOC Fall Weekend trip. We left campus at 9:30 and started hiking around 10:30/11:00. It took about 4-5 hours to get to the summit of Flume and 2 1/2 hours to descend from Liberty. Great views with loads of fall foliage!