Summary: Ascend the Frankenstein cliffs, as we did on Halloween. The trail head is easy to find at the lower parking lot but with autumn leaves on the ground it was easy to lose the trail after it crossed a brook. The trail runs parallel to the railroad tracks just down hill of the tracks. It eventually loops under the bridge to ascend the cliffs.
The actual trail differs from the one on the topo map. When you look at the map you will see two trails - one with a few dots - the map version and one with lots of dots (from the gps) which was the actual trail.
Trailhead: Route 302 in Crawford Notch a few miles west of the Sawyer Rock Picnic area. There are two parking lots and you can use either to start your ascent of the cliffs. (Lat:44.14753 Lon:-71.37014)
Trail Guides for Frankenstein Cliff - Arethusa Falls:
AMC White Mountain Guide
by Appalachian Mountain Club (Appalachian Mountain Club)
Best Seasons: Year-Round
User Groups: Hikers, Dogs,
Ranger Contact: Saco District Ranger, 603 447 5448
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Jon Willard, who has posted 54 other hikes on this site. To visit this reporters web site, click here.
Trail Reviews Page 2 of 3 Submit your own review
Reviewed by Bob on 8/19/2007
We did the Arethusa hike in mid July 2007 and it was breathtaking. A very moderate hike along the trail took us about 1 hour at a relaxed pace. The view from the base of the falls was well worth the hike.On the way back down we took the bemis brook trail, a little difficult at firstBut WELL worth it, there is a fairly steep root ladder to climb down, but once at the bottom the trail is fairly even and not too difficult. Along the Bemis Brook trail you will encounter amultitude of smaller falls that are each just as beautiful as the next. We plan on hiking up the riverbed later in the fall. Will add review after we do.
Reviewed by Amy on 8/6/2007
We hiked with kids ages 5&9 on Aug. 4th 2007. We hiked Arethusa Falls first enjoyed the beautiful falls. There were a lot of people at the falls that Sat. The Arethusa trail was moderate for our boys. After spending time at the falls we choose the Frankenstein Cliff trail. This trail was very challenging for all of us. It was some what overgrown. The cliff overlook was georgous and worth the hike. The condiditons were very dry. Much of the trail was so loose that it was hard to stay on track and not slide down the face of the mountain. It was not well marked from the cliffs down the bottom of the trail. The boys did an excellant job and no one got hurt. It took us a total of 6-7 hours to hike including a 20 min. stop at falls.
Reviewed by Mike on 4/15/2007
Very fun. I did it last year as a boy scout, i think it would only be so fun with a group. we crossed the water, drank water from the 200ft fall, and sat at the end of the cliff and had a grand time.
Reviewed by Den (DJD) on 4/2/2007
Very Moderate to difficult trail....would definitely do it again,,,in the less snowy & icy trail conditions. Total hiking time 5.5 hours....with places of 2' of snow and ice. Slowing the ascent up. Very spectacular views of other mountains & especially Outlook of Mtn, Washington, followed by a spectacular view of Atethusa Falls.....well worth the hike up. 3/31/07 DJD & CAF:) Loved it!!!!
Reviewed by Critter on 10/22/2006
I feel very fortunate to have hiked this trail for the first time and to have experienced it after the first snowfall of the year... A total Winter Wonderland Beauty!! If you like to take pictures, spend a bit of time absorbing nature & taking a lunch break plan on this hike being 4 hours instead of the 3 listed above. I also suggest hiking the Cliff side first, because it is the steepest & leaving Arethusa falls for a sweet, rewarding ending. Looking forward to hiking this in 2007 with a group of friends who couldn't make it this year ... Critter from Portland 10/21/06
Reviewed by Jessica on 9/20/2006
I hiked this trail a couple Summer's ago with my husband (then finace). It was a great hike for what we were looking for (it's pretty low key and easy for people like us who don't typically hike) and the falls at the end were beautiful. I'm glad I checked these reviews because I never knew we could hike to the top and look below! We'll definitely be going back now! :)
Reviewed by Josh on 9/7/2006
Loved this trail! Dogs also loved it.
Reviewed by Chauncey on 8/6/2006
I hiked this trail with a group of 14 people including myself. It was challenging for the first half or so of the hike up, but got much better. The incentive of me hiking this trail was seeing the waterfall near the top. It was beautiful. I got to stick my feet in the water. It was very refreshing. The hike down was great as well. I would definitely want to do it again.
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