Primarily very steep and therefore probably not fun to trail run.
To access the Precipice Path travel along Old Stage Road
Trail from the parking area at the end of Alton Mountain Road. You'll run briefly along the Red Trail
(may also be labeled as the Anna Goat Trail) before forking right to Precipice Path West
After a tenth of a mile or so of a decently steep climb you'll reach a fork to either continue on Precipice Path West
to the left or take the Eastern side instead to the right. The western side has significantly more large rocks and climbing to start and then travels along a narrow trail at the edge of a steep drop off.
However this does lead to excellent views. Meanwhile the eastern side is steep for a much longer distance, follows a small brook and does not provide the views that the western side has.
The eastern side of the Precipice Path is marked very frequently with purple blazes just like Precipice Path West
. The eastern side begins by traveling downward a bit before it levels out for a short period and then begins to climb around 0.25 from the trailhead. The steepest climb begins after you cross over the brook that you'll follow during your ascent. Over the next 0.3-0.4 miles you'll gain at least 500 feet of elevation climbing up a steep slope.
There will be a short flatter area to catch your breath around 0.5 miles from the trailhead and then that climb continues. You'll cross over the brook at least once more as you continue to climb. This climb may have loose material on the slopes and has no man made climbing assistants, like stairs, exercise caution.
After about 0.7 miles from the trailhead you'll begin to move away from the brook and have one last short climb before the trail levels out for a while. After this leveling you'll travel through a larger area of new growth forest and some denser conifer areas.
You'll begin a more moderate climb again at about 1.0 mile from the trailhead and continue this moderate climb to the end of the trail. Just towards the end of the trail you'll start to get out into some clearing areas on top of slabs of rock and have partial views. The last bit of the trail is marked with purple tipped cairns before it meets up with the Blue Trail
/ Belknap Range Trail