Late in the Day: Mt.Eisenhower and Edmands Path

The Presidential Range is climbed by thousands of people everyday, and it's no wonder why the range is so popular, as there's nothing like it. I've hiked throughout the Presidential Range many times over the years, and all of our excursions to the region have been full day experiences, usually hikes totaling ten miles or over. This isn't always the case, take for example Edmands Path and Mt.Eisenhower, a shorter and well built path that offers many beautiful views along it's journey.

Looking toward Mt.Washington from Mt.Eisenhower.

We started very late, the time when everyone was arriving back to the bottom. This wasn't bad planning, we simply wanted to do a hike later in the day. Edmands Path was well built, as it started flat and easily crossed three brooks, the last one having no bridge, but also being pretty easy to cross.

A bridge crossing.

The trail stayed flat shortly after, but soon began the climb. The path constantly went up the easiest route, never getting too steep. Eventually the trail wound around the side of the mountain, passing a waterfall which offered a beautiful view over to the Deception Range.

Edmands Path
The upper reaches of the path.

The path went up only to flatten out again, where there were remnants of snow. Through the trees could be seen Mt.Washington and Mt.Franklin. Eventually it opened up, where we were hit with an amazing view of Mt.Franklin. We could see the rest of the trail climbing the dome of Mt.Eisenhower, and with it getting late, we quickly finished the ascent.

Worst Weather in America
Looking up Edmands Path.
The view from the col.

The trail passed by Red Pond, then continued the climb up the rest of the mountain. We were the only people on the entire mountain, and the winds were howling, meaning the only noise we heard were the winds whipping through the trees. The summit was empty, aside from the iconic cairn atop the mountain.

Red Pond
Looking toward Mt.Franklin.
View from the trail.
The summit cairn.

From the top of the mountain can be seen almost every mountain in the Whites, including Burke Mountain and East Mountain in Vermont. Mt.Chocorua can be seen prominently to the south along with Kearsarge North and Mt.Carrigain to the southwest. Mt.Eisenhower towers over many of the surrounding Whites, making it appear you're on top the world, despite the fact Mt.Washington is right beside you.

The Northern Presidentials from the summit of Mt.Eisenhower.
The view toward the Deception Range. The Pliny-Pilot Range is in the far back.
Mt.Carrigain is in the center, with Crawford Notch to the right.
Looking toward the Bonds and the Twins, with Mt.Lafayette and Lincoln visible above.

The sun was getting low, and it was time to begin our descent. During our climb down, with it being even later, the sun created beautiful shadows along the mountainsides, and lit up every mountain on the horizon. We eventually found our way to the col, then entered the treeline.

The view down the trail.
Looking into the col.
Back to Edmands Path.

We made it back to the flat portion of the trail before the sun fully set, and at that point, it was beautiful. Orange light was coming through the trees, and the distant horizon was of the same color. Even after the sun went down, the moon was able to light our way back down.

On the trail during sunset.
Passing through the trees.
A beautiful forest.

Hikes like this may be inconvenient when it comes to time, but the views are like no other time of day. Sunrise and sunset can be quite beautiful, but to me, the best time of day to hike is the small mirror of time right before the sunset. Not only do you get down at a better time, but you also get the same shadows and soft light as you do from sunset.


  1. That was an amazing hike. I'm looking forward to many more like it!

  2. Two things REALLY stick out with this hike. First, the wide openness of the ridge trails appear to be the most awe inspiring & best part of this hike (as well as many others...). Second, and this pertains to all your entries, it is absolutely amazing how knowledgeable you are regarding the surrounding area & all distant peaks. It’s so great to read as you name off just about every peak, valley & notch visible in your photos!!!

    1. Thank you so much for the kind words! Mt.Eisenhower is a special peak which is much different than the other Presidentials. It's beautiful, and the landscape is smooth, yet still open, it's not filled with jagged rocks, which adds to the experience.