Excellent New Map to the Wapack Trail

The Wapack Range rises above the dimpled landscape of southeast New Hampshire, a mountain range in miniature that offers wonderful hiking opportunities and many scenic vistas. The 21-mile Wapack Trail runs the length of the range and earns its name from the starting and ending points (Mount WAtatic and PACK Monadnock). 

When it opened in 1923, it became the first interstate hiking route in the Northeast. Today it is maintained by the nonprofit Friends of the Wapack, which publishes the comprehensive Wapack Trail Guide. 

The Friends of the Wapack recently released a new, radically improved map of the trail, which is included with the Trail Guide ($11) or can be purchased separately ($6). This full-color map covers the entire Wapack Trail, as well as its connecting side trails, and highlights the topography and landmarks in exceptional—and exceptionally useful—detail. It's available for purchase from the Friends of the Wapack online store.

My favorite day hikes on the trail include the short (2.4 miles) round-trip ascent to the open summit of Mount Watatic at the trail's southern end; the ridge section between Pratt and Barrett mountains; and the 2.2-mile ridge walk along the "Cabot Skyline" south of Temple Mountain.

The Wapack Trail is a good late- and early-season hiking destination, though Hurricane Sandy has apparently done some damage to the trail. If you head out in the coming weeks or months, be prepared for some potential blowdowns and other possible route-finding challenges.

The Wapack Trail can also be thru-hiked and done as a two-day backpacking trip by utilizing the overnight camping shelters at Windblown Cross-Country Ski Area.

You can also find a complete description of the Wapack Trail in my book, AMC's Best Backpacking in New England.

Equipped” is an AMC Outdoors blog, written by Matt Heid.

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