Gross interpretation of riding in New Hampshire, USA

Discussion in 'rec.bicycles.rides archive' started by Ken Tenney, Feb 23, 2004.

  1. Ken Tenney

    Ken Tenney Guest

    A group from our local club is planning a trip to New Hampshire this summer. I've been getting some
    negative reports of the road conditions, traffic, degree of difficulty in the White Mtn region. Most
    of us have 5-20 yrs touring experience, but I'm concerned about some relative novices just having
    too difficult a time with the terrain, etc.

    We started with the idea of having 'central operations' in Conway, then shifted to Waterville
    Valley, and now we're looking at the Lincoln/Loon area. We've done group rides in the Finger Lakes
    region of NY (2 separate years), around Lake Champlain (eastern NY/Quebec/Vermont), and southwest
    VA. Paved road shoulders in Virginia are pretty much non-existent. The shoulders are fantastic in
    the Finger Lakes area and are mostly present in the eastern NY and Vermont (can't say too much about
    the road shoulders on our brief foray up to Quebec).

    For others with fair cycling experience, how do you generally rate the road conditions in this area
    of New Hampshire? What about central Vermont?

    If you could take a cycling vacation for 6 riding days and 400-500miles somewhere in New England,
    USA, where would you go?

    For reference, our trip will be mid-July, 2004 (thinking here of summer traffic considerations).

    Thanks,

    Ken Tenney [email protected] Winchester, VA www.winchesterwheelmen.org
     
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    In article <[email protected]>, Ken Tenney <[email protected]> wrote:
    >A group from our local club is planning a trip to New Hampshire this summer. I've been getting some
    >negative reports of the road conditions, traffic, degree of difficulty in the White Mtn region.
    >Most of us have 5-20 yrs touring experience, but I'm concerned about some relative novices just
    >having too difficult a time with the terrain, etc.
    >
    >We started with the idea of having 'central operations' in Conway, then shifted to Waterville
    >Valley, and now we're looking at the Lincoln/Loon area. We've done group rides in the Finger Lakes
    >region of NY (2 separate years), around Lake Champlain (eastern NY/Quebec/Vermont), and southwest
    >VA. Paved road shoulders in Virginia are pretty much non-existent. The shoulders are fantastic in
    >the Finger Lakes area and are mostly present in the eastern NY and Vermont (can't say too much
    >about the road shoulders on our brief foray up to Quebec).
    >
    >For others with fair cycling experience, how do you generally rate the road conditions in this area
    >of New Hampshire? What about central Vermont?
    >

    _ Since nobody else has replied yet, I'll put in my 2 cents with the caveat that it's 20 years since
    I did any serious riding in the area.

    _ The problem you face is that any roads with good shoulders are going to have heavy traffic,
    especially on the weekends in July. There are a few "back road" routes in the White mountains that
    are nice, but generally you don't have much choice.

    _ If you're up to riding on a dirt road, I'd look at the Sandwich Notch Rd. In general if you're
    good with a map and willing to ride fatter tires for the occaisonal dirt road, you can avoid most of
    the traffic and have some really nice rides. I'd focus on areas slightly away from the central
    attraction of the White mountains in western NH and look for back road rides. I particularly like
    the area from Concord north along 89. 89 has a bike path for much of it's length which connects up
    with smaller roads. There are many old farm roads in NH that see very little traffic, the trick is
    finding them and connecting them up before they get overwhelmed by the traffic from development. The
    further north you go the easier this is.

    _ The key thing to avoid is anything that's remotely a tourist town. The summer population swell
    overloads the local road systems and most roads don't have sufficient shoulders to make constant two
    way traffic and bicycles much fun.

    _ Booker C. Bense

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  3. MRiordan95

    MRiordan95 Guest

    We did an 8 day tour of the White Mnts, Quebec, and Maine. A little hilly and some logging trucks
    one day in Maine, but no problems. Scenic, little traffic, and good roads. Good Luck

    Day 1 - Franconia Notch (Lafayette Place) to Gorham (via Crawford and Pinkham Notch)

    Day 2 - Gorham to Colebrook (via Dixville Notch)

    Day 3 - Colebrook to Woburn Quebec

    Day 4 - Woburn to Sugarloaf Ski Area, Maine

    E-mail me for more deatils

    Day 5 - Rest Day at Sugarloaf

    Day 6 - Sugarloaf Ski Area to Rumford, Maine

    Day 7 - Rumford to Fryeburg

    Day 8 - Fryeburg Maine to Lincoln, NH (via the Kancamaugus Highway)
     
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