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Red Hill Conservation Area

Open to the Public

Since the 19th century, Red Hill (elevation 2,030 feet) has been noted for its panoramic views of Lake Winnipesaukee, Squam Lake, and the White Mountains. Today, Red Hill is one of the major conservation landmarks in New Hampshire’s Lakes Region.

The summit and slopes of Red Hill are protected as part of LRCT’s 2,650-acre Red Hill Conservation Area.

Alongside the Squam Lakes Association, Squam Lakes Conservation Society, Lake Kanasatka Association, Squam Lakes Natural Science Center, Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, Moultonborough Snowmobile Club, and faculty and students of Moultonborough Schools, we are able to maintain 6.2 miles of trails for hiking and snowshoeing, as well as over 3 miles of trail for snowmobiling.

Hiking on these trails in any season provides ample opportunity to view the spectacular wildlife and over 200 years of human settlement and recreation in this area. Most famous is the view from the summit and fire tower, which have been incorporated in the national historic lookout register since 2003. Visitors can also appreciate the interesting geological activity that has allowed mountains such as this to form all across the Lakes Region.

Red Hill Fire Tower
Red Hill Fire Tower

The History of Red Hill

Postcard, Boston Public Library
Postcard, Boston Public Library

From its geologic formation to Native American inhabitants to early European settlers, the Red Hill area has a rich and storied history.

Hiking at Red Hill Conservation Area

Trail Maps

A map for the Red Hill Conservation Area is available for download here:

Waterproof Hiking Trail Map

LRCT has also produced a waterproof hiking trails map for the Red Hill Conservation Area which includes trail descriptions, levels of difficulty, trail distances, and elevations. The map also features the trail map of the Castle in the Clouds Conservation Area in Moultonborough. The map folds up easily to fit in your pocket. This map is available in our online store or at our office in Center Harbor.

Trails

All trails are free to hike, but participants are encouraged to follow the rules posted on kiosks for minimizing human impact.

Hikers are also strongly encouraged to wear appropriate footwear and bring plenty of water.

Trails vary in difficulty based on mileage, elevation change, and trail conditions. These are LRCT’s recommended ratings; however, everyone varies in ability and should trust their own instincts:

Easy  trails are mostly level with gentle elevation gain or losses

Moderate trails will challenge novice hikers. the terrain will involve moderate incline and may have steeper sections and uneven footing

Strenuous trails will challenge most hikers. The hike will generally be longer and include more steep sections.

View from the Fire Tower
View from the Fire Tower, Lake Winnipesaukee and Belknap Mountain Range in the distance.

Red Hill (Fire Tower) Trail

1.75 mi.

Moderate Hike

Elevation Gain: 1,286 ft.

This is the main trail for hikers summiting Red Hill, along the south side of the mountain to the summit.

Hikers will pass by the historic remains of the Horne family homestead on their way to the summit, which provides excellent views of Squam Lake and Lake Winnipesaukee, as well as the Squam, Belknap, Ossipee, and White Mountain ranges.

This is an excellent hike for any time of the year, with an exceptional view atop the fire tower.

Cabin Trail

1.3 mi.

Easy – Moderate Hike

Branching off the Red Hill Trail from the Horne homestead/kiosk site, this trail serves as an alternate route to or from the summit.

The trail forks right from the kiosk and takes hikers along a well-preserved rustic hunter’s cabin, as well as the remains of the Cook family homestead. A connector trail marked with yellow blazes takes hikers to the cellar hole (left) and the barn foundations (right).

From the homestead/kiosk, this trail meets with a snowmobile trail after about 0.5 miles, which is about 1.5 miles and links the Cabin Trail to the Sheridan Woods Trail.

 Eagle Cliff Trail

2.6 mi.

Easy – Moderate Hike

This trail provides a route to the summit that travels along the northwest side of the mountain.

A steep ascent from Bean Rd. leads to the top of Eagle Cliff, where hikers can enjoy two wonderful viewpoints of Squam Lake and the Squam Range.

Teedie Trail

0.6 mi.

Easy Hike

This short trail connects Bean Rd. to the Eagle Cliff Trail, creating a short loop.

It is recommended that hikers use this trial to avoid a potentially dangerous descent on the Eagle Cliff Trail, especially in the event of rain or ice.

Sheridan Woods Trail

2.5 mi.

Moderate Hike

Starting from the northeastern side of Red Hill, this trail heads up the foothills of the mountain and ends on a high point to the southeast of the summit.

From this point is a picnic table and viewpoint of Mt. Israel and the White Mountains, making this a perfect resting place for any hiker.

Scenic Trail

0.5 mi.

Moderate – Strenuous Hike

A short offshoot from the Sheridan Woods Trail with a steeper ascent over part of the climb, but rewards hikers with two outlooks: one of Garland Pond and Ossipee Range, and another of the Sandwich Range.

Drone view of Red Hill fire tower and Lake Winnipesaukee
Drone picture of the Fire Tower, looking towards Lake Winnipesaukee and Belknap Mountain Range taken by Jerry Monkman

Directions & Parking

All parking areas are open from dawn to dusk, and are always free and open to the public.

Winter Access: the “Red Hill Trail” lower lot located on Red Hill Road is plowed. The other parking areas are not plowed.

Red Hill Trail Parking is located along Red Hill Rd. in Moultonborough:

  • Starting at the traffic lights on NH Route 25 in Center Harbor.
  • Turn north onto Bean Rd. toward Center Sandwich.
  • After 1.5 miles, turn right onto Sibley Rd.
  • Travel 1.2 miles, bearing left onto Red Hill Rd.
  • The trailhead parking is on the right.

Eagle Cliff and Teedie Trails Parking is located along the right side of Bean/Squam Lake Rd, approximately 2 miles down Bean Rd. from Red Hill Rd.

Sheridan Woods Trail Parking is available along Sheridan Rd. in Moultonborough:

  • Starting at the intersection of NH Route 25 and Sheridan Rd. in Moultonborough.
  • Turn north onto Sheridan Rd.
  • Continue for 1.5 miles.
  • The trailhead parking is on the left.

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