Explore two summits along this moderate trail to the top of Mount Starr King and Mount Waumbek. The ascent is steady but never very steep, making this route an easier option for summiting a 4,000-foot peak.
Take a peek into the remains of an old springhouse shortly after hitting the trail and enjoy taking in the woodsy scents of the hardwood forest. Just past the summit marker for Mount Starr King, you’ll reach an opening with a view of the Presidential Range and the remains of a fireplace that was once part of a cabin at this site.
The trail continues past the fireplace and eases for much of the last mile before making the final ascent to Mount Waumbek. The summit of Mount Waumbek is wooded and doesn’t have a view; however, a quick 50-yard hike past the summit sign on the Kilkenny Ridge provides a look out toward the Presidentials.
During the 1960s there was a proposal to build the Willard Basin Ski Area, which would have included a tramway and hotel on top of Mount Starr King, a chairlift to Mount Waumbek, and several ski trails. A lack of financial resources prevented this from ever being developed, so today the mountain retains its remote and natural feel. Winter enthusiasts can still enjoy this route as a snowshoe, however.