The not so common loop hike in the Whites
You can reach Speckled Mountain peak via many different trails, but this is a nice loop hike to change it up a bit from an out and back. We went up Bickford Brook trail and down Blueberry Ridge trail. You can go either way, but Bickford Brook is almost completely canopied, whereas Blueberry Ridge is quite exposed with spectacular view of the White Mountains while along the ridge. About half way down, you duck back into canopy for a wooded finish to the parking lot.
It starts out by the old Brickett Place historical farmstead house built in 1912, which is neat to check out before you head out. The parking lot is a typical day use fee lot in WMNF, link to info in permit section. They accept many regional and national passes, so look at the kiosk for info.
The trails are very well signed, as the hike is completely within the White Mountain National Forest. You can take either trail up and or down, and you only have the tiniest bit of repeat from the junction of Bickford Brook Trail and Blueberry Ridge trail. Bickford Brook trail is a much more gradual climb, with mostly tree roots, pine needles and soft ground, whereas Blueberry Ridge trail is steeper and more rocky. All your views will be along the Blueberry Ridge trail, where you can see several of the peaks in the Speckled/Caribou Wilderness area of the WMNF. You can also see several of the local lakes along this trail, including Lake Kezar.
The 'peak' itself offers little views, as it is still fairly tree covered, however you can see several of the high peaks of the Whites and a lot of rolling green hills. There used to be a fire tower atop the peak, and the cement structures still withstand, which is how you know you reached the summit.
This would most likely be a great snow shoeing hike, but we have yet to go back up there in the winter.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.