April 16, 2016.
I was heading north this morning on my way towards Pinkham Notch when I decided to finally do this trail and get it off the books. It has been lingering for a long time and I always tell myself I will get it on the way back from another hike. But once in the car and heading home I lose all ambition to stop and do this short hike. It is only two miles but unfortunately it has to do be done as an out and back or looped with a roadwalk back. So without further ado I bring you my excursion on the Brook Path located in Wonalancet just down the road from Ferncroft.
Not knowing what to expect on this trail I head down the trail and immediately reach the edge of the Wonalancet River. Then why is it called Brook Path if it parallels the river? The river is fairly gentle and peaceful through this section and a good start to a morning hike. Meandering close to the bank the sound of the flowing water has a calming effect.
Across a small foot bridge and then back to the river's edge. I'm really liking this little trail as the river begins to get a little rougher.
Then I reach a spot where there are some large boulders diverting the river through a small channel. Just downstream the river splits into two around some more large boulders one all covered in green ferns.
And how about a short video of the calming sounds of rushing water?
A crossing of the river on a larger bridge and the trail meets up with a woods road that leads off to the right. The trail heads down through the woods to the left following the river on the other side now. Just a few minutes after crossing I spy this object down the banking and just have to make my way down to see what it is.
At the bottom I marvel at this work of art as I have never come across a dam structure like this anywhere. It is all wooden timbers braced to support a wooden deck. Completely amazing and such craftsmanship.
Now one would think that a structure such as this would have some history but I tried finding info on the Internet and came up empty. Too bad since someone put a lot of time and energy into building this. On the other side of the banking is a huge pipe and leading out from the dam. Heading downstream and after a short drop I make it to the base of Locke Falls.
Continuing down and the mystery pipe is across the way heading sharply downhill right into a building.
Even a search for this turned up nothing but the guide book describes it as "an old mill". Just past the building the trail really hugs the river's shoreline and begins to pull away after that. It joins an old road and follows that for the remainder of the trail.
Finally reaching part of Old Locke Road it is just a few tenths to the end and then a roadwalk back on Route 113A to where I parked. This turned out to be a fantastic little trail and the only thing missing from it is the history about the dam and mill building. Now back to what I originally planned for today.
Final numbers: 4 miles, 1 hours and 40 minutes.
Redline Miles: 2.0, Total to Date: 1072.2