Trail Name: Round Pond Trail (South)
Gilford and Gilmanton, NH
Trail Description: Weldon Bosworth. ______________________________________________________________________________________________
Round Pond Trail (South) – Description:
The Round Pond South Trail (blazed red) provides a scenic route from Griswold Scout Reservation’s Camp Bell to Round Pond using part of the Old Stage Rd and the Scout’s vehicle access road to its Round Pond remote camping site. During the “off-season”, September through May, no permission is necessary to park at either Camp Bell or Hidden Valley. Parking is available in the main parking lot at either camp. The Scouts do ask for hikers to leave a basic trip plan in the window that provides a general idea when they plan to leave the area. This helps them identify if a hiker is overdue and potentially in need of assistance. Name and phone number is also helpful. They ask that all vehicles remain in the parking lots and do not venture out onto camp roads.
From the parking area you can reach the Round Pond South trailhead approximately 1.1 mile from the parking lot by following the Old Stage Rd. north and east approximately 0.6 mi. to the intersection of the Boy Scout’s vehicle access road to Round Pond where you take a left (north) and travel another 0.5 mi. to the trailhead.
The Round Pond South trailhead is marked by a sign on the left hand side of the access road indicating it is the scenic route along the gorge to Round Pond. The gorge refers to the deeply incised route of Suncook Brook which drains Round Pond. Trees along the trail are blazed with wooden red diamonds or rectangular painted red blazes. The moderately ascending trail soon crosses a small drainage which forms a nice, but small, cataract in the spring. At about 0.3 mi. a lookout to the left (west) provides clear views of Swett and Piper. The trail then levels off somewhat as it passes over some ledges. The ascent again becomes moderate and at 0.8 mi. passes a group of interesting rock formations on the right and soon an opening on the left where you can look down into the Suncook Brook gorge. At 1.2 mi. the trail exits the woods near a small equipment shed and joins the Round Pond-Mt. Mack trail and the boy scout’s Round Pond access road.
Distances from Camp Bell Parking Lot (775 ft.):
- to junction with Round Pond South Trailhead (1075 ft): 1.1 mi. (1.8 km) 300 ft. (35 min),
- to junction Round Pond-Mt. Mack Trail (1,575 ft.): 2.3 mi. (3.7 km.), 800 ft., 1 hr. 15 min.