Presidential Peaks and the Appalachian Trail

Bretton Woods, NH
5.0 (4 reviews)

Trip Highlights

  • Appalachian Trail Hiking
  • Cozy Backcountry Huts
  • Summit Mount Washington
  • Mountain Creeks & Alpine Lakes
  • Gourmet Lunches & Hot Drinks
  • Sweeping Views
  • Summit opportunity on Mt. Washington


Join Wildland Trekking for an incredible 4 days in the highest mountains in New Hampshire, the Presidential Range! Known as the centerpiece of the White Mountains, the Presidential Range culminates at the highest point in the Northeastern United States – the summit of Mount Washington at 6,288 feet above sea level!

This trek offers an opportunity that is rare in the USA – the ability to hike deep into stunning wilderness while spending our nights in comfortable backcountry huts. Our trek will take us from the ecologically diverse forests that encompass the amazing White Mountains (home to black bear, moose, fox and more) up to high alpine ridges and peaks where expansive views will take your breath away. Our route follows the Appalachian Trail across multiple iconic summits including Mounts Monroe, Mount Eisenhower, Mount Franklin and Mount Pierce to name a few. And our nightly lodging includes a comfortable bunk, running water, toilets, hearty meals and outstanding company.

Read more …
4 Days
$1235 Per Person
Return Guests get a 10% discount on all Trips!
Trip Type: Hut to Hut Trek
Difficulty Level:
Solitude Level:
Group Size: 4-6 Guests
Trip Length: 4 Days
Distance: 15MI / 24KM


Our difficulty ratings are based on a scale of 1-5, tours with a rating of 1 being least difficult, tours with a rating of 5 being most difficult

Backpack Weight:
15-25 pounds
Daily Hiking Distances:
4-6 miles
Most Elevation Loss:
3800 feet
Most Elevation Gain:
1877 feet
Quality of Trails:
Well Maintained
This trip packs a lot of hiking into just 3 days, with significant elevation gains and losses which is what earns it a difficulty rating 3.

Participants should:

  1. be active and healthy
  2. exercise several times per week
  3. be comfortable hiking 6-8 miles per day in hilly or mountainous terrain with a 20-pound backpack


1 least solitude, 5 most solitude

We rate this hiking trip a solitude 2. You can expect to have as much as an hour of solitude at a time.


All White Mountains trips begin and end at the AMC Highland Center near Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. Most guests fly into a regional New Hampshire airport and drive to Bretton Woods via rental car. The nearest airport to is Manchester-Boston Regional Airport in central New Hampshire, approximately two driving hours away. Manchester-Boston is served by domestic airlines including Delta, United, Southwest, and American. Many international carriers serve Logan International Airport in Boston, an additional 30 minutes away in Massachusetts. Bretton Woods is also accessible via bus, Greyhound and Concord bus lines.


From central and south-central New Hampshire (Manchester, Concord, etc.):

  1. Take Interstate 93 North to Route 3 North (Exit 35).
  2. Take Route 3 North to Route 302 East (near Twin Mountain).
  3. Take Route 302 East approximately 10 miles to the Highland Center, located roadside right on Route 302.

From Boston and its suburbs:

  1. Take Interstate 93 North to central New Hampshire.
  2. Follow directions above for central New Hampshire. From Portland, Maine:
  3. Take Route 302 West to the Crawford Notch Depot Visitor Center, located roadside left on Route 302.

Private Trips

Travel in perfect company by booking a private trip exclusively for your group!

Our sliding scale for private trips is based on the final number of guests in your group. Rates are per person and do not include sales tax, national park fees or guide gratuity. The final rate is based on the actual number of guests on the trip and may adjust based on cancellations or additions.

Please Note: you can also enjoy a private trip at our normal scheduled rates by filling any empty tour to capacity. However, if group members drop from the tour those spots will automatically become available on our website for instant booking. By purchasing a private trip at the rates listed below, your trip will remain exclusive to your group regardless of cancellations. 

Private Rates FOr This Trip

  • 2 People: Rate x 2.5
  • 3 People: Rate x 1.75
  • 4 People: Rate x 1.25
  • 5+ People: Rate x 1.15

*all rates are per person

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Day 1

Today you will meet up with your guide and group at the AMC Highland Center, located in the impressive Crawford Notch. We will rendezvous at 5 PM but consider arriving a day or two early to enjoy this stunning area! Family-style dinner is included as we meet our group, chat about our trip logistics and issue some lightweight gear. After dinner we will settle into our private room lodging in order to be well rested and prepared for tomorrow’s adventure.

Day 2

  • Shuttle to Trailhead: 20 minutes
  • Hiking Mileage: 6.1 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 3800 feet
  • Elevation Loss: 1300 feet

After a hearty buffet style breakfast, we will shuttle to our starting trailhead to begin our trek. Our hike begins gradually with classic views of rugged mountain cliffs and waterfalls. As the trail ascends toward tonight’s hut the angle will steepen, and our sense of adventure will increase! Our hut, perched above treeline near breathtaking alpine lakes and with phenomenal views, is a must see and was voted one of America’s best huts by BACKPACKER Magazine. After we settle in and fuel up, we will make a summit attempt of Mount Washington, weather and desire permitting. Mount Washington is known for its extreme weather, which can occur even during the summer months. In any case, this day takes us all the way from forest to the alpine zone and ends with a hearty meal and a cozy bunk!

Day 3

  • Hiking Mileage: 4.7 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 1235 feet
  • Elevation Loss: 1235 feet

Today we will be traversing some of the namesakes of the Presidential Peaks including Mount Monroe (5,372 ft) and Mount Eisenhower (4,780 ft). We will wake to a tasty breakfast in the hut, pack our gear and head off on a section of the Appalachian Trail known as the oldest maintained footpath in the US. Today’s hike is stunning, a sustained ridge walk above treeline with spectacular vistas and mountain scenery. The path takes us over another two summits, Mount Pierce (4,311 ft) and Mount Franklin (5,003 ft) before we descend into the trees to end our day at tonight’s hut. We will settle in for the evening and enjoy another meal prepared by the friendly hut staff. Please note that if the weather today is uncooperative we will hike a safer, alternative route to this ridge hike.

Day 4

  • Hiking Mileage: 2.5 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 50 feet
  • Elevation Loss: 1929 feet
  • Shuttle: 15 minutes

After our last breakfast together at our hut, we will take in the view before we head off on our descent trail toward the Appalachian Mountain Club Highland Center. We will catch a short shuttle back to the lodge where we enjoy a late lunch together and say goodbye to new friends and an amazing adventure.

Please Note: We always do everything in our power to follow the set itinerary, however it can change occasionally based on temporary access restrictions, weather, lodging/campground availability, guest ability/injury, natural events like fires and flooding, and other potential causes. Normal terms and conditions apply to trips with itinerary changes.

Trip Dates & Booking


Click on a date to register. You can also click here to request new dates or book through customer service.

Available to Book


This trip is available and bookable online! Click on the date to register now or contact us online to book through our award-winning customer service team!

Going Fast


This trip has 1 or 2 spots remaining and is bookable online! Click on the date to book now or contact us online to book through customer service.

Request a Reservation


This trip is exclusively booked through customer service due to logistics with lodging, permits, staffing, availability, or something else. Please contact us online or call us at 800-715-HIKE (4453) to request a reservation.

Don't see your dates? Call us! We may be able to add new trip dates.

800-715-HIKE (4453)

Trip Details

Trip Details

What's Included

  • One night in a private room with private bath at the stunning AMC Highland Center
  • Two nights of bunkroom accommodations in backcountry huts in the White Mountains
  • A professional, knowledgeable, certified Appalachian trekking guide
  • Use of top-of-the-line backpack and trekking poles
  • Appropriately rated sleeping bag professionally laundered after every trip
  • All meals are included from dinner the first day through lunch on the last day
  • Roundtrip transportation from the Appalachian Mountain Club Highland Center to the trailhead and back
  • Emergency equipment including a company-issued first-aid kit and satellite phone
  • You will receive a Lifetime Hiking Membership entitling you, your spouse and your kids to a lifetime discount of 10% off any Wildland Trekking hiking trip after your first one!

What's Not Included

  • Clothes, raingear, and footwear (Oboz hiking shoes and boots recommended)
  • Sunscreen, toiletries and personal items
  • Waterbottles and a headlamp or flashlight
  • Guide gratuity (industry recommendation is 10-15% of trip cost)

Click here to see a printable, downloadable trip information packet with more detailed guidance about what to pack.

Meals: What To Expect

We will enjoy some wonderful hut meals, primarily dinners and breakfasts while staying at the huts. All other meals are prepared and provided by your guide.

All of our hiking and backpacking tours include a diversity of tasty meals packed full of critical carbohydrates, proteins and fats. We carry foods that travel well in the backcountry – rice, pastas, lentils, beans, couscous, packaged meats, nuts, breads, oatmeal, granola, and more.

For optimal taste and energy, we supplement all our meals with spices, herbs, oils, cheeses, butter, sugar, and fruits and vegetables (fresh and dried). In addition, we provide you with with an assortment of trail mix, snacks, and dried fruits to eat at your own discretion.

We regularly accommodate vegan, vegetarian, kosher and non-gluten diets and will make adjustments for food allergies. These and other special dietary requests may require an additional fee.

Gear We Provide

We provide all group gear which includes the following:

  • Deuter or Osprey backpacks
  • Sierra Designs sleeping bags
  • Leki trekking poles
  • Mountain Safety Research cooking stoves
  • Mountain Safety Research cookware
  • Company-issued first-aid kit
  • Emergency communication device(s)

What Gear To Bring

We ask that you supply a couple of gear items on your hiking tour. These items are two 1-liter waterbottles per person, either a headlamp or flashlight per person, and a lightweight waterproof stuff sac for your clothes and belongings. Basic items like sunscreen, bug repellent (where and when applicable), lip balm, and toiletries are also important.

What Clothes to Bring

When you register for this tour you’ll receive access to a printable, downloadable trip information packet with detailed guidance about what clothes to pack (click here to see it now.) All trips require a sturdy pair of hiking shoes or hiking boots, rain gear, and our recommended clothing system. A minimum of three pairs of wool or synthetic hiking socks are also required.

Trip Logistics

Trip Logistics

Where Do We Meet?

You will meet your guide and group on Day 1 at 5pm at the AMC Highland Center near Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. Your guide will contact you approximately 2 weeks before your trip to coordinate the exact meeting place and pick-up time.

Click here to see a printable, downloadable trip information packet with more detailed guidance about flights, shuttles, recommended lodging and more.

Start/End Times

Your guide will inform you of the first hiking day’s departure time at the orientation meeting. Generally, you can expect it to be between 5 and 7 am, although the exact time will depend on current weather and road conditions. We will drop you off at your hotel on the final day normally before 5 PM (this time is not guaranteed, as a variety of circumstances can influence our exact return time).

Safety Considerations

Your safety is our top priority. Our hiking tours are led by professional Appalachian Trail hiking guides, all of whom are wilderness-certified first responders or EMT’s, each with years of guiding and wilderness experience. We’ve developed comprehensive risk management protocols that our guides adhere to in case of an emergency, and most tours carry a satellite phone. If you have any further questions about safety, please contact us at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) for more information.


Your tour will be led by a trained, experienced professional with a solid guiding background, years of personal wilderness and hiking experience, medical certifications, and a passion for leading people into breathtaking landscapes. Check out our Meet Our Team page for staff bios.

Group Size

The standard ratio of guests to guides on this trip is 6 guest and 1 guide. If you have more questions about group size, please give us a call at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) and we’ll answer all your questions.

Weather in the White Mountains

The White Mountains are home to the notorious weather station on the top of Mount Washington where in 1934 the fastest wind speed record on land that wasn’t associated with a tornado or hurricane – 231 mph – was recorded. The weather can be wildly erratic, which makes it important to follow the packing list and be prepared for a diversity of conditions including temperate and humid to below freezing to windy and rainy. Thunderstorms in the summer are common, but so are sunny, blue bird skies on long summer days.

Average Temperatures (Fahrenheit)

Month High Low
June 61° 49°
July 65° 54°
August 64° 53°



Highland Center

1 night

This unique mountain lodge in the stunning location of Crawford Notch, New Hampshire is operated by the same conservation organization that runs the backcountry hut system. The lodge has cozy rooms, general living room and patio with breathtaking views. Wildland guests are in private rooms with shared or private baths.

White Mountain Huts

2 nights

The White Mountain backcountry huts are remote and in spectacular settings. They offer us the opportunity to sleep above treeline in cozy, indoor “lodging.” The accommodations are in co-ed bunkrooms with separate bathrooms with flush toilets. The bunkhouses are not heated, have no lighting, and electrical outlets are not available.

Trip Reviews

Trip Reviews

  • Average Customer Ratings:

  • 5.0 (4 reviews)
Lynne W

Top Notch Guide

28 days ago

Julian is a top notch guide. He is safe, knowledgeable, skillful, and his hospitality is unmatched. Also, he never ran out of snacks!

Chuck H


1 month ago

Despite some very scary weather, this was a great hike with an awesome guide. The first day is definitely more challenbing than advertised, but at the end of the day we really felt that we accomplished something!

Des N

Fantastic Trip!

3 months ago

This is the trip to do if you love hiking and a challenge. Day 1 is rough (a lot of boulders) but the views are beautiful and the end result (Lake of the Clouds Hut) is worth the work! The huts are great and the food is wonderful. Be sure to listen to the tech talks and nature talks - both are so interesting. Do not forget rain gear! The weather in this area is unpredictable. Where else can you have a gourmet meal on a summit prepared by a Wildland Trekking guide? I cannot say enough great things about Dan and Julian. Fantastic trip!

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