Mt. Percival/Mt. Morgan (circuit)

Located in Holderness, off Route 113

Total Distance: approximately 5 miles
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Climbed July 20, 1997
Weather conditions: Clear/70's

Both the Mt. Morgan and Mt. Percival trails can be accessed from the west side of Route 113, (Morgan, 0.5 miles Northeast from the road leading to the Rockywold and Deephaven camps, Percival 0.8 miles). Parking is better at the Mt. Morgan trail, but there is a small area at the head of the Mt. Percival trail, also. Be aware that this area is also used for Rattlesnake, which is very popular, so it is likely that you may have to park on the side of the road. We chose to do the "circuit", by ascending Mt. Percival crossing over using the Crawford-Ridgepole Trail and descending Mt. Morgan. We would advise anyone who wants to reach both peaks to do it in this manner. Park at the Mt. Morgan head and walk down the road (0.3 miles) to the head of Mt. Percival. The ascent is very moderate. A series of alternating steep to level climbing allows a rapid gain in altitude while being able to catch your breath. Just below the summit at about 1.5 miles, the trail diverges in two directions. Left takes you through "the caves" to the summit, while going right takes you over "the cliffs" to the summit. We opted for the caves, which we inadvertantly avoided by going around them climbing large boulders. The boulder climb continues to the summit. The views from the summit were superb! Several of the areas lakes can be fully seen as well as surrounding mountains and ranges. Gunstock and Tenny Mountain are clearly visible. Even though it was a crystal clear day, it was quite windy and very chilly. The circuit continues through the woods on the Crawford-Ridgepole Trail, which is pretty much lateral between the two peaks. Following this trail you will come two a sign-post where this and the Mt. Morgan trail meet. It directs you right, towards the actual summit of Mt. Morgan. The views from Mt. Morgan are relatively the same as Percival, although, it is not as wide open and the view is not as panoramic as Percival. The descent from Mt. Morgan is approximately 2 miles. We found it to be steep and rocky, and many parts of the trail were soggy, muddy and even had running water in places. The total circuit took us about 4 hours.