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New Hampshire: Hiking Off of the Beaten Path
Hiking trails easily accomplished in one day that are not as well known in New Hampshire.
First and foremost I must salute the hiking trails that lead up to New Hampshire's 16 fire towers (13 of which are manned, and 15 of which are owned by the state, visit www.nhdfl.org for more information.) My personal favorite is Stoddard's "Pitcher Mountain" known locally for the wild blueberries that grow on the trail and at the top, this short day hike is moderately easy and enjoyed by many. The top of the trail boasts the fire tower which when climbed adds to the beautiful view. Additionally the hiking trail abut a farm and farmland can be seen for many miles. This is a great enjoyable day hike that both adults and children can enjoy. The rest of the fire towers are located in the following towns: Gilford, Farmington, Orange, Croydon, Milford, Effingham, Pittsburg, Milan, Peterborough, Loudon, Notingham, Lancaster, Moultonborough, Derry, and Wilmont/Warner. An additional note to comment on Peterborough's Pack Monadnock, this is a nice easy day hike that can also be driven some of the way. Pack Monadnock is also especially good for children.
So now you have hiked the fire tower trails, and maybe even earned a patch to go along with it (once again visit www.nhdfl.org for more information) and you are thirsty for more easy day hikes with great views, and enjoyable quiet forestry. Let me now direct you to another Monadnock region find- MacDowell Damn located in Peterborough, NH. A conservation effort MacDowell Damn has picnic tables and a beach area. It is also home to several hiking trails. One in particular runs the course of the lake and is a nice easy flat walk. This is not off of the beaten path so much-you will see people walking their dogs, biking, and swimming however it is well worth it for the fun and beautiful lake views. The seacoast also offers a nice flat nature walk hiking path. This is located in Portsmouth, NH. Called the Goodwin Trail this hike allows individuals to see local wildlife which is different than the other regions in NH. The seacoast is unique in some of it's vegetation and temperature-usually a few degree cooler than inland because of the nice ocean breeze. This hike is also more populated than the fire tower hikes but extremely enjoyable and child friendly.
These hikes will get you started-continuous exploring of what NH has to offer will always yield delightful trails hidden off of highways and back roads. New Hampshire would not be the same without it's vast array of hiking trails some famous like Mt.Monadnock and others just as scenic but less known. I got you started with some hints but the joy in hiking off of the beaten path is getting lost and finding these great trails hidden all over NH. Enjoy,