New Hampshire Region Descriptions

View of Eisenhower, Monroe, and Washington from Mount Pierce (photo by Webmaster)


Click a region on the map to jump to that region's description. Click on a region's header to see a listing of hikes in that region.

NH - Northern   

The northern section of New Hampshire is a remote, wild, undeveloped region. It is replete with wildlife, including moose, black bear, and deer. The mountains are low elevation and relatively widely spaced, offering stunning views of shimmering lakes, murky bogs, and dark spires of a forest dense with spruce and firs.

The 162-mile Cohos Trail wends its way through this region from south to north, running from Rt. 302 all the way to the Canadian border. This region also includes the 40,000-acre Nash Stream Forest.

Boundaries:   North of Rt. 2.

NH - Central West   

The Central West region of New Hampshire includes the western portion of the White Mountain National Forest. This section encompasses the alluring Mount Moosilauke with trails running up its flanks from every direction. And to the north of Moosilauke is the rugged, wild, and seldom traveled Kinsman Ridge.

Map of New Hampshire regions and highways (map by Webmaster) NH - Northern region NH - Central West region NH - Central East region NH - Southwest region NH - Southeast region In the southern reaches of the Central West region are Mount Cardigan State Park and Mount Kearsarge, both peaks providing gorgeous outlooks. There are a variety of paths leading to these summits, allowing the hiker to choose easy or difficult routes to the summits.

Boundaries:   South and west of I-93. North of I-89.

NH - Central East   

This region contains the bulk of the White Mountain National Forest, a vast park encompassing 800,000 acres and 1,200 miles of hiking trails. It contains a wide range of habitats due to large elevation changes; an ascent of 1,000 feet is akin to traveling 200 miles north. The Presidential range includes seven summits over 5,000 feet, including the highest peak in the Northeast: Mount Washington at 6,288 feet.

The "white" in "White Mountains" comes from the numerous bare peaks in this region. The alpine areas above timberline are home to rare and beautiful plants, many that normally grow in the Artic. Generally speaking, trails through the White Mountains are rocky and rugged.

The Central East region of New Hampshire also encompasses the Lakes district to the south of the national forest. Here you will find more accessible, lower elevation peaks such as Mount Major with its mesmerizing view of Lake Winnipesaukee.

Boundaries:   South of Rt. 2. East of I-93. North of Rt. 4.

Sunapee Lake (photo by webmaster) NH - Southwest   

Southwestern New Hampshire generally contains rolling, scenic low-elevation hills. The Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway 49-mile hiking trail runs from Mount Monadnock to Mount Sunapee, hitting both of these popular and beautiful peaks.

Boundaries:   South of I-89. West of I-93.

NH - Southeast   

Southeastern New Hampshire contains the state's short ocean shoreline. Trails include walks along the coast, estuaries, and the region's many rivers.

Farther inland is Pawtuckaway State Park, an area of rugged but low-elevation mountains with many interesting boulder fields.

Boundaries:   South of Rt. 4. East of I-93.

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Kearsarge Summit (photo by Sal Silvestre)


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