Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Monkey Cliffs.....North Woodstock NH 8/14/13

After 3 relatively long hikes on my week up north I was looking for something a little shorter and easier on Wednesday. I'll add, that other than Muise Mountain, all hikes would be bucket-list stuff.

The story behind the Monkey Cliffs started for me two years ago on the way back to Lincoln after hiking Blueberry Mountain in Benton. I pulled over just past the Lost River Caves to take care of some business. ;)  I went into the woods a short ways and was staring at some great looking ledge/cliffs. They instantly were added to the list. So on the way back to the condo I stopped where everyone does if they have a question about the White Mountains, The Mountain Wanderer. I spoke with Steve Smith, asking him what he knew about those cliffs. He knew the spot, had been there, and said they were known as the "Monkey Cliffs". Apparently they are just known as that by the locals. He also said there were some interesting views from there.

So I headed up Rt. 112 to a pullover near the cliffs and headed in. My first goal was to get across The Lost River. I got lucky and came to a good spot to cross right off. That's just a 2' gap at that cascade.

I started out further west than I thought and ended up having to cross a good sized, (unnamed as far as I can see) brook. This was a good mistake. If I'd started where I wanted to, I'd have miss this. Endless Cascades which I'll talk more about later.

I was basically bushwhacking up the SW side when I came to a small open slab with a view of mounts Blue, Jim and Waternomee I believe.

I finally hit some better grades and very open woods heading for the ledges.

The first ledge I came to was somewhere in the middle of this series of ledges. Nice view, but not what I was looking for.

Heading NE, another.

Still heading NE, the ledges got bigger and definite signs of views enhancement.

Finally the one I was looking for. A ledge with a view into Lincoln and up the valley.

Had too. 8)

On the way out I decided to stick close to the ledges to see if there were any I missed. Found this one with a good view of the lower ledges I thought I was going to hit first.

I did manage to get to that lower ledge which had it's own very cool views.

The black flies which hadn't been an issue all week were starting to get thick. I decided it was time to move on and check out those cascades. I started out a bit higher than where I'd crossed earlier and headed down stream. There seemed to be no end.

After a good half hour of playing in the brook I headed out, hitting the Lost River at the same spot I'd crossed. 

Aren't GPS's great?  :)

I made one final stop before heading back to Lincoln. Beaver Pond. I love that spot.



  1. Excellent whack, and excellent report! Have never been to this location, and so that made it even more interesting to read.

    Love reading your reports since they are about the types of adventures that I enjoy the most.


  2. Thanks very much John. People like yourself and Steve Smith have inspired me take on these very cool adventures.
    You're pretty much guaranteed to have the hike and unique views to yourself.

  3. Very cool JJ. Being an explorer at heart I enjoy these stories. I guess the BF's don't take took kindly to people from away!

  4. Thanks for posting your track. At first I thought this was in the Lost River Reservation area but you're actually much further east. As a rock climber I've always been interested to see if there was enough vertical to make the hike out there worth it. I'm not sure there is yet. I was also nervous that the rock might be junky/chossy but if it's anything like what's behind the Lost River it might be great.

  5. Not being a rock climber, I can't give any advice on the cliffs in that respect. Only that there's some nice views up there.