White Mt. NF--Mt. Jackson

About this Location

Mount Jackson is one of the peaks in the southern Presidential Range of the White Mountains. It is named after Charles Thomas Jackson, a 19th-century state geologist, and not after President Andrew Jackson. The mountain has an elevation of 4052 feet and is ranked 38th on the official list of New Hampshire's 4000-footers. Mount Jackson is a popular hiking destination, as it offers views of Mount Washington, Crawford Notch, and the Pemigewasset Range. It is also a habitat for wildlife, such as gray jays, which are known to eat from hikers' hands. Several trails lead to the summit of Mount Jackson, some of which can be combined to form loop hikes with other nearby mountains, such as Mount Webster and Mount Pierce. The most common trail is the Webster-Jackson Trail, which starts from US-302 near Crawford Notch State Park and splits into two branches at 1.4 miles. The left branch goes to Mount Jackson, while the right branch goes to Mount Webster. The two branches meet again at the Webster Cliff Trail, which is part of the Appalachian Trail. The loop hike is 6.5 miles long and has an elevation gain of 2500 feet. Another option is to continue on the Webster Cliff Trail to the Mizpah Spring Hut and then take the Crawford Path back to US-302. This loop hike is 8.3 miles long and covers two more 4000-footers: Mount Pierce and Mount Eisenhower. Mount Jackson is a great hike for any season, but it requires proper gear and preparation, especially in winter. The trails can be steep, rocky, icy, or muddy, depending on the weather conditions. The summit can be windy and cold, so layers and windproof clothing are recommended. Hikers should also check the weather forecast and trail conditions before heading out, and carry a map, compass, and first aid kit. Mount Jackson is a rewarding hike that showcases the beauty and diversity of the White Mountains.

About White Mountain National Forest

See all hotspots at White Mountain National Forest

In the decades prior to 1911, the unregulated logging practices of private timber companies in the White Mountains had resulted in a damaged landscape susceptible to both fire and flood. Fires had burned thousands of acres, and flash floods affected the water power necessary to the mills of major industrial centers downstream, such as Manchester, New Hampshire, and Lowell, Massachusetts. Concerns over losses to industry, business, and tourism, and the growing conservation movement led to citizen action. The Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) and Society for Protection of New Hampshire Forests (SPNHF) spearheaded an effort to ensure the permanent protection of the White Mountains from further depredation. After years of lobbying and intense public pressure, Senator John Weeks of Massachusetts, a native of Lancaster, New Hampshire, introduced legislation that became known as the Weeks Act. The Weeks Act was passed by Congress in 1911, appropriating 9 million dollars to purchase 6 million acres of land in the Eastern U.S. In turn, this led to the creation of the White Mountain National Forest (WMNF) in 1918, and twenty-one other national forests throughout the north and southeast. Many of the groups who were instrumental in the passage of the Weeks Act, including the SPNHF and the AMC, are still active today, and the WMNF has grown from 7,000 acres to almost 800,000. Today, the reforested mountains and hillsides supply forest products and provide magnificent recreational opportunities while maintaining healthy watersheds and ecosystems.

Notable Trails

The AllTrails website has a description and map of a hike to Mount Jackson.


  • Restrooms on site

  • Wheelchair accessible trail

  • Entrance fee

Content from White Mountain National Forest Official Website

Last updated November 22, 2023