Mount Avalon is a 3,430 foot mountain located in Grafton County in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The beginning of the trail to reach the summit of Mount Avalon is fairly straight forward with moderate grades most of the way. The last portion of the trail is a rather short, but steep climb.
Elevation: 3,430 feet
Elevation gain: 1,417 feet
Distance: 3.4 miles roundtrip
Duration (book time): 3 hours
Mount Avalon Trail
Once at the Crawford notch depot, cross over the railroad tracks and look for the sign marking the trailhead. There will be a junction with Mount Willard trail, stay right at the sign to continue along the Mount Avalon Trail. The trail crosses over many streams and is relatively flat for the first portion. After hiking for roughly 1 mile, you will take a sharp left turn where the trail steepens and climbs up rocky terrain. Continue for 0.4 miles until reaching the summit of Mount Avalon. To descend, retrace your steps until you reach the train depot where you began.
Loop Hike Option
For a longer hike, you can continue on the Avalon Trail and summit Mount Field and Mount Willey, making a long loop hike. A loop trail hitting three 4,000′ peaks, and Mount Avalon. From AMC Highland Center, head west on A-Z Trail until you reach the summit of Mount Tom. Here, you will head southwest on Willey Range Trail to Mount Field and Mount Willey summits. Here, head north to reach the summit of Mount Field. You will then head northeast on the Avalon Trail until reaching the summit of Mount Avalon. To descend, follow the Avalon Trail back down to the Highland Center parking area.
Distance: 9 miles roundtrip
Elevation gain: 3,257 feet
Duration (book time): 7 hours
Camping and overnight hiking options
If you travel further down the road from Crawford Notch Highland Center there is the Dry River Campground for camping options. There are 31 primitive campsites available, each costing $13 per night. Reservations may be required during busy months.
Mount Avalon is an excellent winter hike, and easy accessible. The last section of the trail is rather steep, so crampons or microspikes are recommended.
The parking area for the Mount Avalon Trail is located off route 302, directly next to the AMC Crawford Center and directly behind the depot train station. There is a small parking area at the train station, and plenty of roadside parking available.
To get to the Mount Avalon Trail parking area
Take Route 302 northwest to the Crawford Depot which will be on the left side of the road. The AMC Highland Center is located nearby. There is adequate parking here. The actual depot is a train station.
Weather & Forecast
The majority of the Avalon Trail is below tree line, making it less exposed to the elements. You should always check the forecast before heading out and be prepared for inclement weather.
Areas of frost. Clear, with a low around 28. Southeast wind around 5 mph.
Areas of frost before 9am. Sunny, with a high near 52. Northeast wind 0 to 5 mph.
Areas of frost after midnight. Clear, with a low around 29. Northeast wind 0 to 5 mph.
Patchy frost before 7am. Sunny, with a high near 54. North wind 10 to 15 mph.
Partly cloudy, with a low around 41. Northwest wind 15 to 20 mph.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 57.
Partly cloudy, with a low around 43.
Andrea is a writer, hiker, and adventurer from New England. She enjoys snowboarding, sunrise hikes, winter, night hiking, traveling, and photography.