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Hike Mount Madison

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Mount Madison Information

Elevation: 5,367 feet (142 meters)
Prominence: What is Prominence? 466 feet (187 meters)
Location: Thompson, NH (Coös County, New Hampshire)
Range: Presidential Range
Coordinates: 44°19'42" North     71°16'42" West
Rating: How do the ratings work? Difficult
Features: Rock Scrambles, Mossy Falls, Madison Spring Hut, Ice Caves, 360 degree views on a clear day, Alpine Zone, Star Lake, Peak Bagging
Distance of highlighted hike below: 10 miles with Mt. Adams (or hike just Madison at 7.8 miles)

Mount Madison is a 5,367 foot mountain in Thompson, New Hampshire, Coös County in the White Mountains. It is the northernmost mountain in the Presidential Range.

It is named after the fourth president of the United States, James Madison. All Mountains in the Presidential Range are named for U.S. presidents, with the tallest mountain, Mount. Washington, named for the first president, the second tallest, Mount Adams, for the second president, and so on. However due to an error, Mount Monroe, named after the fifth President, James Monroe, is actually 22 feet (6.7 m) taller than Mount Madison.

There are many hiking trails on and around Mount Madison to choose from including part of the Appalachian Trail. The Madison Spring Hut is just 0.4 miles below the summit of Mount Madison and between Mount Adams. It is maintained by the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC). You can enjoy the Ice Caves via the Shortline Trail or Mossy Falls on the same trail.

For peak-baggers:
Mount Adams is 1.4 miles from the summit of Mount Madison
Mount Jefferson is 3.3 miles from the summit of Mount Madison

Lists Mount Madison are on:
New Hampshire 4,000 footers
New Hampshire 4,000 footers in Winter season
New England 4,000 footers
New England 4,000 footers in Winter season
     New Hampshire Hundred Highest
New England Hundred highest
New England Hundred highest in Winter season
Northeast 111
Trailwrights 72 summit club
48x12 "The Grid"


star lake mount madison mt.madison nh 4000 footers photo summit
Star Lake and Mount Madison. Photo taken by hiker Abhijeet Kumar. Taken June 2014.


Mount Madison Trail Maps - Directions from the parking lot to the summit Top

The map below shows how to get to the summit of Mount Madison and Mount Adams via the Appalachia Trail head Parking Lot. There are many trail routes you can take to reach the summit of Mount Madison and Mount Adams, but the one below takes you by Mossy Falls, the Ice Caves, Star Lake and the Madison Spring Hut.

Begin at the Appalachia Trail head Parking Lot. The trails begin behind the wooden information booth. Stay right to begin the Air Line Trail for 0.9 miles. (You will cross an intersection about 0.2 miles into the hike for The Link, and Sylvan Way, then another intersection about 0.4 miles after that for Beechwood Way.) After you pass the Beechwood Way sign, stay slight right at the next intersection to cross over to Short Line Trail and continue for 1.9 miles until you reach Mossy Falls.

After enjoying Mossy Falls, continue up for 0.4 miles until you come to an intersection where you can go left to see the Ice Caves, or left for a slightly easier hike. (Each way till be 0.9 miles and meet up together at the Gulfside Trail.) Once you reach the Gulfside Trail sign you will see a sign pointing to Mount Adams. Continue up for 0.8 miles until you reach the summit.

After you are done at the top of Mount Adams, take the Star Lake Trail down to the Madison Spring Hut, passing Star Lake on your right. It will be 1 mile from Mount Adams to the hut. From the hut, take the Gulfside Trail up the bald rockyness of Mount Madison for 0.4 miles where you can enjoy great summit views on a clear day. Views of the Mount Washington Auto Road are also visible if you look just left of the direction of the Madison Spring Hut.

From Mount Madison, take the Watson Path for 1.5 mils (passing a junction at 0.3 miles with the Pine Link). Connect onto the Valley Way Trail and continue until you reach the parking lot, which is roughly 2.4 miles.

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Click to download PDF Trail Map of Mount Madison and Mount Adams

Mount Madison Photos Top

Mount Madison, NH New Hampshire, coos County, Hiking NH 4000 Footers presidential Range, 5367 feet
Photo of Mount Madison with the Madison Spring Hut on July 25, 2012

Mount Madison Driving Directions Top

From I-93
The parking lot for the above hike begins at the Appalachia Trail head Parking Lot. From I-93, take exit 35 (just North of Franconia Notch) or exit 40 if you're coming from the North. You will be on route 115 after exiting the highway. Follow it to route 2, where you will turn right. The parking lot is right on the road. It is a long parking lot, hard to miss. There are generally always cars parked there.

From Conway
Take route 16 North until it meets Route 2 in Gorham, NH where you will turn left. You will pass Dolly Copp road. The parking lot will be on the left.

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