Stories From The Trail Episode 13: White Mountains Direttissima with Griffin Howard

New Hampshire is home to 48 peaks over 4,000 feet. For hikers who collect patches, the “NH48” is awarded to those who have visited all 48 peaks. For the truly insane and/or daring, the next level is the White Mountains Direttissima. “Direttissima” is from the Italian for “shortest link”, and although it’s usually a climbing term, it applies here as the most efficient route for hitting all 48 peaks.

All in a single hike.

Only a handful of people have succeeded—we were only able to find eight. Depending on your route it’s 220-250 miles, and can take anywhere from 6-10 days. And as we know, Appalachian Trail hikers consider the Whites of New Hampshire to be equal parts hard and beautiful. But how familiar are you with the whole range?

Familiarizing himself with the Whites was only part of 23 year old Griffin Howard’s motivation for attempting this, but also because it’s a significant physical and mental challenge. For instance, the “rules” are still more like traditions on this hike, but the goal is to hit all 48 4,000 footers in a single resupply, while accepting no gifts of food or rides from anyone.

We spoke with Griffin as he was preparing and again after his return. Join Voldemort and Green Giant for all the questions and answers you could imagine for a project like this. What do you bring, which way do you go, and can you teach your emotional support goat to hold the leash for your hiking chicken. All that and more on this episode of Stories From The Trail!

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Comments 2

  • Ruby Cosmo : Jul 10th

    I met this kid on top of North Twin on the solstice!! We had a very nice chat.

    • Gary Sizer : Jul 10th

      Alright, just as long as you didn’t feed him. 😉


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