Sunday, December  9, 2018
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The flat, semi-barren summit and the cool, breezy day made North Percy feel like a little patch of pre-arctic terrain. We put on a few layers and sat down for our lunch break, then set about gathering blueberries in a little plastic tub we had brought. Even though we managed to fill the tub fairly easily, we could see that in a few weeks there would be a real bonanza of berries up here (i.e. there were many more blueberries that had yet to ripen).
Distant Presidentials
The season has arrived
A bucket for our summit
With our plastic container filled with blueberries, we began our descent back down the slabs, without much issue (again, these slabs are not that tricky to navigate), and in short order, we were back down at the junction with the Percy Loop trail. We turned left here, following the loop trail as it descended north, soon curving further and further west as we formed an encircling loop around North Percy. The upper part of the Percy Loop is rather rough, actually, but the longer part at lower elevations is wide, smooth, and at just the right descent angle for rapid walking. As evidence of this, it only took us fifty minutes to hike the nearly four kilometres (2.5 miles) between the col and Nash Stream Road, where the Percy Loop Trail ended.
Downslab
Percy Loop
Secluded but still rough
The nicest signs
Backcountry Superhighway
Back at Nash Stream Rd
Unless you've spotted a car or bicycle at the Percy Loop trailhead, you aren't quite done. To complete the loop, you must turn left (which we did) and hike about a mile down Nash Stream Road to the Percy Peaks trailhead and the car pullout a few feet beyond (which we also did).
Percy Loop trailhead
Nash Stream Road
Photogenic Percys
In total, this is a short (10km / 6 mile) loop, and it's even shorter if you skip South Percy (which I wouldn't, because it's so nice), and if you return via the Percy Peaks Trail. Elevation gain is on the order of two thousand feet plus a bit - respectable but certainly nothing super difficult by NH mountain standards. Overall this makes a fairly easy half-day hike. Interest-wise this hike is superb: the mostly-open summit of North Percy, the fun open slab ascent, and the quaint, cute and easy sub-summit of South Percy. Plus there's a very good chance you'll have it mostly to yourself - no huge hiker crowd.

Highly recommended.
Interactive trackmap with photo points - Percy Peaks Loop - click map to view

Percy Peaks Loop - Hike Data
Start Time:
12:53PM
Start Elevation:
1310ft (399m) *
End Time:
5:23PM
Max Elevation:
3420ft (1042m) *
Duration:
4h29m
Min Elevation:
1246ft (380m) *
Distance:
10.13 km (6.29 mi)
End Elevation:
1246ft (380m) *
Average Speed:
2.3 km/hr (1.4 mph)
* : +/- 75 feet
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