“This trail presents a quick climb and scramble up to Mt. Jefferson!
— Matthew Geason
Fall Colors · Views · Commonly Backpacked
At 3008', this trail leaves from the highest-elevation trailhead on a public road in the White Mountains. The Caps Ridge Trail accesses the summit of Mt. Jefferson and intersects with the Mt. Jefferson Loop Trail
at 2.2 miles. The beginning is flat but gets steep quickly, and there is a rock face that can easily be scrambled – just watch your hand holds.
After the rock face, it's a climb up to the rather rocky summit. If it's windy or you're climbing in the winter, there are a few spots in the rocks where you can reduce your exposure. There will be two trail junctions on the way up to the summit that can be used to make a loop if you are looking for a longer hike.
There are numerous viewpoints on this trail and countless spots to sit for lunch and enjoy your time in the mountains. The trail may be short, but the climb you'll experience will make it a bit difficult for those who are not used to climbing trails at this grade.