Saturday, April 7, 2012

Brook Walk and Lower Mount Roberts Trail

On my trips between Boston and Thornton I often make a slight detour to Moultonborough to hike Mount Roberts, usually parking on Rt. 171 to maximize the hiking.  On Friday (4/6) I was tired, and wanted a smaller hike, so I parked at the upper parking lot.  I first went down the Shannon Brook Trail to the lower end of the Brook Walk, and took the Brook Walk back up to the pond.  I then followed the Mount Roberts Trail for about a mile to the outlook.  This gave me a total of about four miles with some 700 feet of elevation gain, with waterfall views on the Brook Walk and good views of Lake Winnipesaukee from the outlook.

View Larger Map

There is a gatehouse at the entrance to the conservation area

and just inside it is the Lee Family cemetery

Stepping back a bit one gets a view through the trees of Lake Winnipesaukee with the Gunstock ski area in the background

A Google search on the Lee family cemetery led me to a very interesting article on the history of the Castle in the Clouds:  New Insights on the History of “Castle in the Clouds”:

After the Revolutionary War settlers began to move to the valley high in the Ossipee Mountains, founding what came to be known as the “Lee Settlement” since the Lee family was the first to arrive, building their six room home in 1792.  Other families followed – the Roberts, the Hornes, the Whittens, the Copps, and the Whithams.  These homes were smaller, generally having only two downstairs  rooms with a sleeping loft above for as many as eight to ten family members.
 I crossed the dam and started down Shannon Brook Trail, which like all trails on the property is well marked with ample signs

After a few tenths of a mile there is a large clearing to the west of the trail from which partial views can be had through the trees of the Castle in the Clouds.  On Friday I noticed for the first time a cleared slope east of the trail; going up that slope gave an excellent unobstructed view of the castle

I do not know whether the slope is newly cleared or whether I just failed to observe it on my previous hikes.

I took a few photos along the Brook Walk, and have added them to my previous post Waterfalls Along Shannon Brook. On returning to the pond I spent some time photographing the sculptures of a family of foxes

Many more photos of the foxes here!

I next hiked about a mile up the Mount Roberts Trail to the signed outlook

The best views are to the south over Lake Winnipesaukee, with Gunstock Mountain prominent on the opposite shore.  There are still traces of snow visible

More zoomed

While most of the southern slopes of the Ossipee mountains are wooded there seemed to be single farm

It was a cold and windy day so I did not stay long.  Emerging from the woods I noticed Gunstock Mountain behind the red barn

All in all a very enjoyable short outing!


  1. That is indeed a very pleasant trek that you did, Mohamed! A year or so ago, I did much the same hike, and concluded that it offered big rewards for a modest amount of time and effort.

    Thanks for posting!

    1. Thanks for your comment, John!

      "Big reward for modest amount of time ..." does not really apply for you if you include the driving time :)