While there are multiple options for reaching Lake Solitude, it’s hard to beat the trail over Mount Sunapee and White Ledges. Start at the Sunapee Lodge and ascend via the Summit Trail, which is also part of the Sunapee-Ragged-Kearsarge Greenway (SRKG). In just under 2 miles you’ll reach the summit of Mount Sunapee, where you may see visitors getting off the chairlift to enjoy the summit without the work. While this is a family-friendly hike, there is the option of shortening it and making it easier by taking the aerial sky ride to the top. Continue over the summit on a gravel road and down the white-blazed Solitude Trail, and be sure to take in the fantastic view of Lake Sunapee before dipping back into the woods.
After a fairly easy mile you’ll reach White Ledges, which offer a great view overlooking Lake Solitude. This can be especially spectacular in the fall when foliage is at its peak. Following the same trail another 0.6 miles will bring you to the shore of Solitude Lake, and you can look across and back up at the ledges you were just on. Explore the lake, eat some lunch, and relax before heading back up to the ledges and summit. Keep an eye out for wildlife, as deer, foxes, and coyotes are common. You may even see a black bear or moose! Once back on Mount Sunapee, choose between returning the way you came or taking a more direct route down the ski trails during the summer months, which offer wide open views of Lake Sunapee. If you want to extend the day, check out Mount Sunapee’s Adventure Park or cool off at the nearby Mount Sunapee State Park beach.