The Federal Hill Trails in Milford and Hollis, New Hampshire is an easy 4.5-mile loop hike that follows several named trails that lead to two vista points - one located along the summit of the Vista Trail and another named Henry's View, which sits along the Henry's View Trail.
Trail name: Vista Trail, Snowmobile Trail, Henry’s View Trail
Location: Federal Hill Road, Milford/Hollis NH
Allowed activities: Hiking, snowshoeing, birdwatching, nature study, cross country skiing, dog sledding, snowmobiling, mountain biking, and horseback riding. This is a multi-use area and hunting is allowed on all Hollis Town owned Conservation Land during Hunting Season which runs from Sept 15-Dec 15. For the safety of all visitors please consider wearing blaze orange when using the trails during hunting season. Dog owners are encouraged to have their dogs wear blaze orange as well.
Trail Restrictions: No motorized wheeled vehicles are permitted on any Hollis Town Forest or Conservation Land Trails. NO ATVs, ORVs or Dirt Bikes, No Camping, No Fires of any kind. No Littering. During Spring Mud Season Trails are closed to Horses and Mountain Bikes and signs will be posted. Any organized rides of 10 or more horses or mountain bikes must contact Hollis Trails Committee for approval of trails to be used by calling Sherry Wyskiel at 603-886-1014. For more information follow the link: https://www.hollisnh.org/trails-committee
Hours: There are no posted hours at the trailhead, but given the restrictions outlined by the Hollis Conservation Commission on the town’s website, under the trail use section, it is reasonable to assume that visitors would only be allowed to use the trails during daylight hours.
Fees and Parking: There is no fee to use the trails or to park. The parking for this area is on either side of Federal Hill Road at the Milford/Hollis Town line. Both areas provide plenty of parking spaces off of the street.
Pets: Dogs must be leashed or under the owner's control at all times.
Accessibility: The trails are not wheelchair accessible.
Sanitation: No restrooms or trash bins are at the trailhead or along the trails. Please carry out all waste.
Trail information: We hiked these trails together and created a loop hike that was approximately 4.53 miles in length. Sections of the trail are moderate, but most of the hike was easy.
These trails travel through a group of Conservation land easements in the Towns of Milford and Hollis NH. On the west side of Federal Hill Road Parking area, opposite the Monson Village Trails, hikers will have access to the trails we hiked. There is no trailhead kiosk or posted map.
The Hollis Conservation Commission and a Trail Commission directs visitors to the Hollis Nor’easters Snowmobile Club site to use their maps. The Snowmobile Club maps are not accessible to hikers during the summertime because the club lists all trails as being closed. The best way to hike this area is to download the trail information from this posting and to pay attention to the direction signs posted along the trail by the snowmobile club. Thankfully there are lots of orange snowmobile markers along all of the trails and junctions are really well marked. The Nor’easters Snowmobile Club maintains these trails really well.
We began our hike by entering at the orange “Trail Entrance”
sign. The trail here is very wide and well-traveled and a good stretch of the
trail is covered by a layer of woodchips. At the first trail junction, we
headed toward the Birch Hill trail. Here the trail was wide and flat and
covered by straw with open fields on either side. We hiked past the entrance to
Michaela’s way and continued on the trail following the path as it led us along
a powerline were wildflowers were growing along the edges of the trail. The trail
veered away from the powerline and back into a more wooded area. We passed by another beautiful field of
blooming wildflowers. We chose the Vista
Trail and began a slow steady climb up to the top of Birch Hill where we were
treated to some lovely views of the surrounding area. The trail is fairly wide
and gravely with a slow steady climb up the hill. There is a picnic table and a couple of wooden
benches at the top, so hikers can stop here to catch their breath and enjoy the
After a short rest, we continued our hike west on the Vista Trail and headed toward the Cell Tower. The trail becomes narrower and has more roots and rocks to travel over. We hiked until we came to Henry’s View trail. We did this as an “out and back” hike to enjoy the great views found at this memorial spot dedicated to Henry and Hilda Hildreth who were longtime residents of Hollis and responsible for the establishment of the Henry Hildreth Conservation Area. After enjoying the views, we back tracked to the snowmobile trail and headed east along the trail. Our hike continued through the forest and back down the hill toward the parking area. This was a lovely wooded hike with great views to enjoy.