Mount Garfield is a 10 mile round trip hike with incredible 360 degree views. With 3,500 feet of elevation gain spread over 5 miles, it offers mostly gradual incline, making the hike seem to be at the easy to moderate level.
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Height: 4,501 feet
Length: 10 miles round trip
Duration: 4-9 hours (Book time 8 hours)
Elevation Gain: 2,959
Mount Garfield Trail
The trail starts near the middle of Gale River Loop Road. The gradual incline continues for around 4.8 miles before the last .2 miles brings you to the summit. The foundation of an old fire tower lies at the top. Clear views into the heart of the Pemi Wilderness with clear views of the Franconia Range, Owl’s Head, North and South Twin, and the Bonds.
Hikers can also choose to summit Mount Garfield from Mount Lafayette on Franconia Ridge. This path is absolutely stunning but far more strenuous. You can take a look at the maps in our Lafayette or Franconia Ridge post (linked to in this paragraph).
Hikers can also choose to hike from the trailhead further east on Gale River Loop Road. This is the quickest trail to hike Galehead Mountain, but it can be a detour to Mount Garfield as well. Adding in Galehead is a good way to knock of two 4,000 footers on a long day hike.
The trail is often dry, well maintained and well traveled. No issues with any type of footwear. The gradual incline nearly the whole way makes the conditions in Winter, Summer, Fall or Spring all manageable.
Nearby hikes. Mount Garfield is most often hiked alone, but it is part of the Pemi loop, and is connected the Franconia Ridge and Galehead Mountain.
Take 93 North through Franconia Notch, hop on to Route 3 towards Twin Mountain and take a right onto Gale River Loop Road. You will pass numerous campsites before coming to the parking area.
Rain and areas of fog before 1am, then areas of fog and a chance of rain and snow between 1am and 3am, then areas of fog and a slight chance of rain and snow. Cloudy, with a low around 31. Southwest wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.
Patchy fog and a slight chance of rain showers before 8am, then a chance of rain showers and patchy fog between 8am and noon, then a chance of rain and snow showers between noon and 3pm, then a chance of rain and snow showers between 3pm and 5pm, then a chance of rain and snow showers. Cloudy, with a high near 34. West wind around 10 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%. New rainfall amounts less than a tenth of an inch possible.
A chance of snow showers before 9pm. Cloudy, with a low around 28. West wind 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.
Snow likely after 9am. Cloudy, with a high near 30. Southeast wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches possible.
Snow. Cloudy, with a low around 28. East wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 35 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 7 to 11 inches possible.
Snow likely before 10am, then snow showers likely. Cloudy, with a high near 29. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of 3 to 5 inches possible.
A chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a low around 21. Chance of precipitation is 40%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.
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Max DesMarais is the founder of hikingandfishing.com. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor adventure, travel, and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. Max grew up hiking all around New Hampshire and New England. He became obsessed with the New Hampshire mountains, and the NH 48, where he guided hikes and trail runs in the White Mountains. Since moving out west, Max has continued his frequent adventures in the mountains, always testing gear, learning skills, gaining experience, and building his endurance for outdoor sports. You can read more about his experience here: hikingandfishing/about