Mount Hale is a 4,055 foot mountain located in the Twin Range in Bethlehem, New Hampshire, Grafton County in the White Mountains. The shortest trail to the summit of Mount Hale is by taking the Hale Brook Trail. Mount Hale is considered one of the easiest hikes out of all the 4,000 footers, though the summit lacks any views. The summit is an open circle field with a big cairn in the center. This is most often hiked with Mount Zealand.
Elevation: 4,055 feet
Elevation gain: 2,300 feet
Distance: 4.6 miles roundtrip
Duration (book time): 3 hours
Hale Brook Trail – 4.6 miles round trip – 2,300 feet of elevation gain
Begin hiking on the Hale Brook Trail for 2.3 miles until you reach the summit of Mount Hale. It is a fairly straight trail with no intersections or junctions. To get back to the parking lot where you started, simply retrace your steps and descend the Hale Brook Trail until you reach the trailhead sign. Though this hike lacks great summit views, it is actually quite nice. The trail goes along a river for quite some time which is gorgeous. And views can be seen looking back down the trail that are also fantastic.
Lend-a-Hand Trail – 5.4 miles round trip – 1,300 feet of elevation gain
The only other maintained trail to the summit is the Lend-a-Hand Trail which begins at the AMC Zealand Falls Hut. This is also a common path taken when hikers are summiting both Mount Zealand and Hale.
Distance: 2.7 miles
Elevation gain: 1300 vertical feet
Hiking in winter
Zealand road is closed during the winter. Some hikers will choose to snowshoe up Zealand Road for a couple miles to access the trailhead. The road is easy to hike along, and Mount Hale by itself is one of the easiest 4,000 footers.
Camping and overnight hiking options
The closest campgrounds in the area are Zealand Campground, Sugarloaf I and Sugarloaf II, all located off of Zealand Road. Another place to stay when hiking Mount Hale is at the Zealand Falls Hut.
Backcountry camping is permitted, with restrictions such as: Unless otherwise posted, you may camp: Below treeline, at least 200 feet from the trail, at least 200 feet from all water sources, and at least a quarter of a mile from any road or hut.
The parking area for the Hale Brook trail is located on Zealand Road in Bethlehem, New Hampshire on the right side of the road.
*NOTE* Zealand Road is closed during winter.
To get to the Hale Brook Trail parking area
The parking lot for this hike is located on Zealand Road in Bethlehem, New Hampshire. It is roughly 2.5 miles up Zealand Road on the right hand side. You will pass by Sugarloaf Mountain campground before reaching the parking area. The trail begins to the right.
Current Weather Conditions
Mount Hale is a wooded and fairly low summit, so the conditions will be less severe and typically more similar to those in the valleys than to those on the high summit of Mount Washington. Always be prepared before heading out.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 19. West wind around 15 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph.
Partly cloudy, with a low around 16. Wind chill values as low as 0. Southwest wind around 15 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.
Sunny, with a high near 31. South wind around 15 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.
A chance of snow showers after 3am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 27. South wind 15 to 25 mph, with gusts as high as 40 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.
A chance of snow showers before 7am, then snow between 7am and 1pm, then rain and snow. Cloudy, with a high near 36. Southeast wind 15 to 25 mph, with gusts as high as 40 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible.
Rain. Cloudy, with a low around 36. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of less than half an inch possible.
Rain. Cloudy, with a high near 38. Chance of precipitation is 80%.
Andrea is a writer, hiker, and adventurer from New England. She enjoys snowboarding, sunrise hikes, winter, night hiking, traveling, and photography.