Tuesday, November 23, 2010

New Hampshire Adventures

It's no secret that in a few months it is my every intention to now longer be a resident of New Hampshire or New England. With that thought in mind, over the last few months I've made it a bit of a point to try and get to a few places I've never been before I head out. I wanted to provide a pretty elaborate reflection of these adventures but I thought I'd keep it rather short and just give you the nitty gritty. So without further adieu, here's a little more of what NH has to offer.

The Flume Gorge
One of America's top ten most beautiful State Parks. A natural chasm takes visitors from the Flume Visitor Center on wide gravel paths and wooden walkways through covered bridges, past waterfalls and through the 800-foot long gorge with its sheer 90-foot walls. Scenic pools, glacial boulders, and mountain views. Discovered in 1808, the Flume is a natural gorge extending 800 feet at the base of Mt. Liberty. The walls of Conway granite rise perpendicularly to a height of 70 to 90 feet and are from 12 to 20 feet apart. Bus service is provided to transport visitors to within 500 yards of the gorge entrance. Marked walking trails with signs explaining natural features lead to other points of interest, including the Pool and Sentinel Pine Bridge.
We decided to check it out. New Hampshire is the ONLY state of the 50 whose State Parks are funded specifically through entry fees. The State of NH charges $13 a person to take this 2 mile, self interpretive walk through the woods of the Flume Gorge Area. After paying the same amount (for 2) that you pay for a tank of gas, you and 300+ of your closest friends stand in lines on wooden scaffolding that lines the walls of the gorge. As the water crashes over the rock cliffs, you get to enjoy being soaked and cold while enjoying the natural beauty herein. Ok.. really.. I enjoyed the place, I just can't understand the $13 price of admission. But I guess it costs money to operate a place like this especially where many of these citidiots treat the surrounding nature like their own personal trash can.

Georgiana & Harvard Falls
Down the road from the Flume is a free hike. Into the woods, under 93 and up the hill you'll find a series of amazing waterfalls as the water cascades down the mountainside. These falls or even more gorgeous then the Flume and you definitely get better bang for your buck. Crystal cascades, weave in and out of the rocks strewn about as this river meets up eventually with the Pemi. Gorgeous views looking south along I-93 complete this trip as you hike ever higher up the trail to its terminus at Harvard Falls.

Every once in awhile you run into one of these but seldom up this close.

Yeah, I finally made it to the top of Monadnock. It was cold as hell this past weekend when we finally got up there. Shuffling our feet along the frozen puddles up high, temps in the 30s and wind cranking out of the west at 35+. This is the second most climbed mountain in the world and I finally made it up there to soak in the scenery of Massachusetts, Vermont, NH, NY and even a sliver of Connecticut. No mountain rises remotely as high for nearly 100 miles in any direction. The hike wasn't nearly as difficult as I expected and was truly enjoyable. Anyone can hike Monadnock.. if they wanted to.