New England Hikes Tips

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Where is Hazen's Notch Conservation Center, and why does it offer some of the best Vermont hiking?

Vermont Hiking

Vermont hiking at the Hazen's Notch Conservation Center is the perfect introduction to hiking the state. In the center, you can hike to the top of Burnt Mountain, or explore miles of hiking trails through meadows, farmland, and around ponds. The center is free for day use, and they offer some guided hikes to watch for wildlife in the area.

Located in northwest Vermont, Hazen's Notch is a perfect hiking weekend getaway. You can stay at a local bed & breakfast or camp in a commercial campground outside the park. It's an excellent introduction to the joys of Vermont hiking – from bird watching to watching for beavers at the beaver pond.

   
What Connecticut hiking trails should I hike on my trip to Connecticut?

Connecticut Hiking Trails

Connecticut hiking trails offer everything from mountain climbing to leisurely woodland strolls. Some favorites include:

  • Cathedral Pines and Mohawk Mountain give the hiker an excellent glimpse into the changes a tornado can have on the landscape. This area was hit by a tornado in 1989, and the hiking trails through the area now show just how the landscape is attempting to return after the devastation.
  • The Devil's Den Preserve in Weston and Redding is a great family destination. Connecticut hiking trails travel through hardwood forests, and there is a loop trail that takes in several other trails in the preserve. Excellent wildflowers in the spring and summer, as well.
  • The Pachaug State Forest offers three excellent Connecticut hiking trails. Visitors can hike along a brook, into a forest, or explore a rhododendron-white cedar swamp. This is a great location for fall, leaf-peeping hiking.
  • The Babcock Circumference Trail is a wonderful, fairy-tale trail that leads to bogs, boulders, and beyond. Located near the town of Greenwich, another calling card for this area are the many stone walls throughout the park. Kids will love it!
Connecticut hiking trails are a great place to spend an afternoon or a weekend. Close to New York and Boston, they are still a world away in peace and tranquility.

   
Hiking in New Hampshire sounds like it's all about mountain climbing. Are their other hikes, too?

Hiking in New Hampshire

For many people, hiking in New Hampshire is all about scaling the many peaks of the White Mountains. One of the most popular hikes in the state takes hikers to the top of Mount Washington. Most trail reviews say it's not an easy hike, so only attempt it if you're in the best of share. There are some steep areas, and the alpine area is rocky and difficult.

Other hiking in New Hampshire isn't quite so demanding. For example, the Welch-Dickey Loop is only 4.5 miles long, and a short drive from Boston. You can hike to the top of either Welch or Dickey Peak, but the loop between them offers great views. It is a steep hike in places, but the views are worth it.

   
What hiking trails New Hampshire are great for families?

Hiking Trails New Hampshire – Family Hiking

Plenty of hiking trails New Hampshire are perfect for family hiking. They include everything from short nature walks to more strenuous mountain peaks, but the kids should love every one of them!

  • Arethusa Falls is a short, 2.6 mile hike in the Franconia - Pemigewasset area. It's an easy hike to a beautiful waterfall, actually the highest falls in New Hampshire.
  • The hike to Mountain Pond is an easy 2.7 mile day hike in the Carter area. This trail is great for families who like to fish, because the trail is flat, and you can fish at Mountain Pond when you get there.
  • Hedgehog Mountain is an easy 4.8 mile hike in the Crawford - Sandwich area. You'll get some great views of Mt. Passaconawa, via the Downes Brook Trail.
Hiking trails New Hampshire run the gamut from easy to difficult, but there are some perfect family trails along the way.

   
Hiking trails Maine – try hiking to the top of Mount Katahdin.

Hiking Trails Maine – Mt. Katahdin

If you want the premier of hiking trails Maine, hike the trail up Mount Katahdin (elev. 5,267 feet), a difficult climb of 4,000 feet. The mountain marks the terminus of the Appalachian Trail, and the beginning of the International Appalachian Trail that runs into Canada. It's a beautiful location in the wilds of Maine, a great spot for spying wildlife as well as exploring Maine's beautiful pine woods.

You'll have to pay to enter Baxter State Park, where the trailhead lies, unless you live in Maine. The park is in the Millinocket area, and offers many other hiking trails if you're not into the difficulty of reaching the top of Maine's highest peak. Try the hikes to Chimney Pond or Fowler Brook if you're looking for less strenuous trails.

   
What are rail trails for hiking in New England?

Hiking in New England

Hiking in New England is a wonderful experience any time of the year. Many hikers enjoy hiking in New England in the winter, and summertime is the time to climb mountains in New Hampshire, explore the shore in Maine, and walk a rail trail throughout the region.

Rail trails are a growing trend in areas with abandoned railway right-of-ways. Groups in the area work to turn these right-of-ways into walking trails, and many exist throughout New England. Some of the trails are paved, making them wheelchair accessible, as well. Hiking in New England is a wonderful way to explore the area, and rail trails make it easy for everyone!

   
What are some of the best Boston hiking trails?

Boston Hiking Trails

Boston hiking trails are as unique as "Bean Town" herself! They range from coastal and bay walks to country jaunts and urban retreats. Some favorite trails include:

Appleton Farms in North Shore. This is one of the oldest continuously operated farms in the country, and it's open every day. Kids will love the trails through grassland and farmland that show a real, working farm in day-to-day operation.

The Arnold Arboretum in Jamaica Plain was designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, the same man who designed New York's Central Park. There are 265 acres of plants here, and hiking trails lead you to all points in the Arboretum.

The Belle Island Reservation in East Boston is Boston's last remaining salt marsh. There are pathways and an observation tower so you can experience some of the many animals that make the salt marsh their home.

The Middlesex Fells Reservation is another hiking destination because it has areas for hiking, rock climbing, horseback riding, and much more. Located in Northeast Boston, it's a retreat in the middle of a great urban area.

West of Boston is one of the most famous ponds in history – Walden Pond. Now it's a state recreation area with miles of hiking trails, so you can see what motivated author Henry David Thoreau to live and write there.

Boston is much more than clam chowder and baked beans. There are miles and miles of hiking trails throughout the area, just waiting to be discovered.

   
What kind of hiking trails in Massachusetts will I find outside Boston?

Hiking Trails in Massachusetts

There are some great hiking trails in and around Boston, but as you spread out over the state, you'll find great hiking trails in Massachusetts, as well. Some of the best include:

  • Mount Greylock is the highest peak in Massachusetts and a great hiking destination. You can drive to the top, but hiking one of the trails to the top is much more exhilarating.
  • At the Mount Toby State Reservation you can turn back time and hike the Robert Frost Trail, inspiration for some of the poet's works, and you'll see why. Explore woods, ponds, and more in the reservation near Amherst.
  • You can't hike Massachusetts without hiking the beach dunes of Cape Cod. The Cape Cod National Seashore offers a 25-mile long hike along the shore, from Provincetown to Coast Guard Beach. Take a section, or hike the whole thing over the weekend.
Hiking trails in Massachusetts offer everything from woodlands to seashore, mountain peaks to poetry. You're sure to find a trail you love in Massachusetts.

   
Does the Appalachian Trail pass through Connecticut?

Hiking Connecticut – The Appalachian Trail

The Appalachian Trail passes through the heart of Connecticut, and is a great way to get a taste of the state while hiking Connecticut. In fact, the trail reaches 53 miles from the border with New York to the Massachusetts border. Hiking Connecticut on the Appalachian Trail takes the hiker through meadows, fields, woodlands and even the edges of small towns.

There are shelters for hikers all along the trail, and some areas where food and supplies are available at the end of a section of hiking. The Appalachian Trail stretches from Maine to Georgia, with scenic spots in every state it passes through. Hiking Connecticut on the Appalachian Trail is an excellent way to get a cross-section of hiking in the state, while seeing some of the best scenery the state has to offer.

   
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Guru Spotlight
Susan Sayour