If you’re thinking about trying to climb Mt. Washington in the spring, summer or fall, but feeling a bit apprehensive about taking on one of the most difficult peaks in the east, please consider hiring one of our experienced local guides. While we specialize in technical climbing, mountaineering and backcountry skiing, many people don’t realize that we are also available to guide people on hikes – like Mt. Washington -- that they might not otherwise feel comfortable tackling on their own. Or perhaps you just want a guide to share local knowledge and lore, or to help with route finding or an especially large group, or just to have a partner to share stories on the trail and to take your photo on the summit.
We normally lead our Mt. Washington hikes up the Lion’s Head trail, which begins at the Pinkham Notch visitor center on the east side of the mountain. This is the easiest route to the summit, but still entails grinding up 4.1 miles of extremely rugged, rocky terrain, and 4250 feet of vertical relief. The hike to the summit normally takes between three and five hours, and then another two or three to get back down. Please note that it is also possible to get a ride back down the auto road; or for a traverse of the peak, you could take the cog railway back down the west side of the mountain (where we could conveniently stage a car).
Our guides are all members of the Mountain Rescue Service (MRS), so you’ll be hiking with the exact person who would get the call were anything untoward to happen. All of our guides are Wilderness First Responders and have deep local knowledge of Mt. Washington and the surrounding peaks of the White Mountains. Between us we have hundreds, if not thousands, of Mt. Washington ascents to our credit, during every month of the year, and in every kind of weather imaginable.
Synnott Mountain Guides is based in Jackson, New Hampshire, near the Pinkham Notch trailhead. We are your Mt. Washington experts and would love the opportunity to share our love for the east’s most iconic peak with you.
Prerequisites: no prior experience is required, but the ascent is 4.1 miles and 4250 vertical feet, so participants should be physically fit and ready to trudge uphill with a small pack for four or five hours. If you are interested, we can help you with a training program to get prepared for the ascent
Time: 6-8 hours, approximately three to five hours up, and two or three hours down
Equipment and clothing - the exact kit will depend on the weather, but here's a sample list:
hiking boots and winter socks
long underwear top and bottom
soft shell pant
hard shell/rain pant
top mid layer, i.e. fleece jacket
lightweight puffy or ski jacket or hard shell jacket
sunblock, lip block
water bottles (1-2 liters)
lunch and snacks
When and where: your day will start at the SMG office in Jackson at 7am. We can quickly get you outfitted and then hit the trail
Cost: rates will depend on the guide to client ratio, with privates being the most expensive and groups the least. Please click the RATES link on the home page for the breakdown.
More info: Contact our office by filling out our contact form or calling 603-383-6976 (office) or 603-986-9607 (Mark's cell)
Other Mountaineering Courses: