When beginning from the Pinehurst Road trailhead, the Five Finger Point Trail is accessed by a brief stint on the Col Trail
that leads to a pair of junctions due south of Rattlesnake
Col. Follow signage carefully; the two junctions appear as one on many maps but are reached consecutively. Bearing right at each leads the runner due east, parallel to Pinehurst Road, where houses can be spotted at several points off to the right. After making a very gradual descent towards Squam Lake, the trail forks left and right at the neck of the Five Finger Point peninsula to form its loop.
Circling the loop clockwise (bearing left at the peninsula's neck) leads rather quickly to the route's main swimming attraction: the Rattlesnake
Cove Jumping Rock, which is reached by a very short unmarked spur trail leading to the shoreline. Here, at Rattlesnake
Cove's southern inlet, a large rock formation slopes gradually down toward the water's edge before dropping off into a beginner-friendly "cliff jump" only about seven feet high. The landing is wide, easy to spot, and 25-30 feet deep. Water access without a jump is found at the shallower areas to the left of the ledge. On mid-summer weekends, the spot draws crowds of swimmers and onlookers who have reached the cove by motorboat.
Continuing clockwise around the loop, runners pass two somewhat sandy coves opening to the south and southwest before reaching the peninsula's westernmost "finger." Here, another tiny spur leads out to a remarkable vista at the water's edge, where gradually sloping rocks sprawl out into the lake, offering great swimming for younger children and anyone else who passed on the plunge at the Jumping Rock. It's also a perfect spot for lunch and afternoon sunning. The remaining section of the loop goes quickly, though progress may be slowed during the right time of year by plentiful blueberry bushes along the peninsula's western edge.