7/1/12 – Georgiana Falls Path is a great day hike with classic White Mountain stream and waterfall views along the way. For the most part, this is a family-friendly hike, our two boys were 6 and 3 /1/2 at the time and both had a great time.
There are some steep rocky sections and dangerous ledges, my wife and I held our son’s hands as needed, especially above the lower falls. According to a number of hiking guides many folks stop at the lower falls not realizing the trail continues another .5 miles to a larger 80ft tall Upper Georgiana Falls (aka Harvard Falls). Keep in mind the trail does become more steep and rugged above the lower falls. I would not suggesting bringing younger kids with limited hiking experience past the lower falls, unless you are really cautious. We don’t normally use hiking sticks, but they would have come in handy on this trail.
According to our older copy of the White Mountain Guide the “Georgiana Falls Path lies on private property and is not officially maintained.” Official or not, we found the trail well maintained, with nice wide paths most of the way. There are yellow blazes marking the trail from the parking lot, under the I-93 bridges to the main trail where they turn red. The red blazes appeared to be freshly painted and very helpful in a few sections where the main trail path was not obvious.
We found the trail in great condition, although insect repellant is a must (at least this year). We saw a number of mosquito swarms on the underside of rocks, which we tried not to disturb. The repellent seemed to work well and it was not a problem for us.
We had a nice dry day in the mid-70s, could not ask for better hiking weather. As with any White Mountain waterfall trail, trail conditions can change drastically depending on the season, current weather, and rainfall amounts. There was one tree down over the trail, no big deal, especially after all the damage the region suffered in 2011.
The trail was also quiet, much less travel compared to other White Mountain Falls, like Arethusa Falls, which can get rather congested during the summer. We only ran into a couple other hikers and had the Upper Falls to ourselves for more than a 1/2 hour.
What a great spot! There’s a large open rock area, great for eating lunch or relaxing. The day we visited, there were lots of butterflies flying around I was able to capture a photo of one landing on my wife’s hiking boot.
The other neat thing that caught my eye was the light film of foam that was occurring near the edge of the large pool below the falls. There were all kinds of patterns and random lines forming on the water, I captured a bunch of images with my camera, here’s an example of one:
Distance to Lower Falls (Height: 30′): .8 miles
Distance to Upper Falls (Height: 80′): 1.3 miles
Difficulty: Moderate, trail becomes more difficult past the Lower Falls
Parking: Free, Decent Sized Lot
Hiking Time: A few hours round trip…we took our time and snapped a bunch of photos along the way.
Not really a great place for swimming, but plenty of picture taking opportunities.
The unmarked trailhead is located between I-93 Exit 33 and 34, both get you onto route 3. From Rt. 3 you head North or South (depending on which exit you take) and turn onto Hanson Farm Road, which turns into Georgiana Falls Road (Google Map) look for an unmarked parking area, trail begins through the fence and under the I-93 overpass.
We had a great time, and would like to try it again sometime, maybe in the fall season.
Once I get home, I hope to post additional photos on my Flickr page, which I’ll link or embed here.
The best resource that I found is a neat 2-page PDF located here: http://www.nhvacationhome.net/images/Georgiana_Palls.pdf
For those a bit more adventurous, there’s also a neat blog post here talking about Georgiana Falls Path in the Winter.