Odiorne Point State Park

Area:  Odiorne Point State Park
Region:  NH - Southeast  
Seacoast Region, Odiorne Point State Park
Location:  Rye, NH
Rating:  Easy  
Features:  Ocean, loop hike
Distance:  Approximately 4.0 miles  
Elevation Gain:  Minimal  
Season:  Summer
Hike Date:  06/24/2000 (Saturday)  
Last Updated:  06/26/2012  
Author:  Webmaster
Companions:  SDHers: Dennis, Linda, Ed, Rich, Sal, Jane, Kathy, Beth, and more

Click for a larger trail map (it will open in a new window).   

Odiorne Point State Park features and trail map
(map courtesy of Odiorne Point State Park)
Trail map of hiking trails and features of Odiorne Point State Park (map courtesy of Odiorne Point State Park)

Trail Guide   

Dennis Marchand did a great job of organizing the first SDH cookout and walk at Ordiorne Point. He got there early and picked out a pleasant spot next to the ocean and got the grill all set up and ready to go. A couple dozen people took advantage of this relaxing day...there may have been more but we learned a little too late that the "helpful" parking attendant was telling people that our group wasn't there.

The trail (photo by Webmaster)

Thanks to Sal and Rich for bringing along photos of past hikes to share with everyone. It's wonderful to have such great photographers in our group. At the end of the day, I caught the ever persistent Rich, tracking down a cottontail rabbit for a close-up. We shared our picnic area with bunnies, woodchucks, squirrels, and chipmunks. After stuffing ourselves for lunch, we left our food at the mercy of the squirrels and went for a walk through the woods and along the shoreline.

The jetty (photo by Webmaster)

The walk took us through woods with big, old, sprawling trees, past a bunch of World War II bunkers, past lots of poison ivy, next to the rocky shore, and finally to Frost Point with a sandy beach area and a jetty. Linda's pedometer, which has proven accurate for past hikes of known distances, tells us that it was about 1.5 miles to this destination. After watching kayakers perform flips, everyone gathered out on the end of the jetty and enjoyed the water views and passing boats.

SDHers in front of the ocean (photo by Beth Fox) Heading back to the picnic area, the group divided to explore the many other trails that we passed on our way out. Dennis took us up a steep, overgrown path, that led to the top of a bunker where the ocean views were even more expansive. Here, a purple finch perched, singing its pretty song for us.

Jane found the light blue shell of half a robin's egg and Kathy pointed out spittle bugs. These are small, green, oval shaped bugs that hide underneath foam (which looks like spit) that can be seen on many plants along the trail. There are lots of wild rose bushes in the park - mostly with bright pink flowers, but some with white flowers. We also saw a mocking bird which looks striking in flight with bright white bands on its wings and tail feathers.


NH - Southeast

  Driving Directions   

Odiorne is located on Rt. 1A just over the Rye border. It can be approached from Portsmouth on Sagamore Avenue (follow the signs for Rt. 1A) or from the south by following the road that comes up the coast (which is also 1A). The main parking area is clearly marked with signs and a toll booth. A second parking area, just before the bridge over the inlet from Little Harbor, is open occasionally.

About Odiorne Point State Park   

The 331-acre Odiorne Point State Park, located in Rye, New Hampshire, offers a network of walking trails as well as a paved bicyle path. You can choose to hike deep in the woods, or right along the shore of the Atlantic Ocean and Little Harbor. A thorough exploration will lead you from small sandy or pebble beaches and sheltered tidal pools, through woods and fields, among old military bunkers, and along marshes and Seavey Creek.

Odiorne is a great place to walk, snowshoe, cross-country ski, bike, boat, fish, and picnic. The paved bike path/sidewalk is inside the park but roughly parallels Route 1A and is about one mile long. Biking is also allowed on the footpaths. There are picnic tables, restrooms, and even the Seacoast Science Center which has exhibits relating to the natural and human history of Odiorne and the seacoast area. The restroom building is only open in-season.

The Seacoast Science Center is open year-round so the parking area is accessible year-round although a park entrance fee is only charged in-season which generally runs from Memorial Day to Columbus Day weekend. However, during the off-season, as well as roughly from Labor Day to Columbus Day, the gate closes around 5:00 p.m. so you have to be careful not to let your car get locked in the parking lot. If you're worried about getting locked in, you can instead park at a small pull-off along Rt. 1A, just south of Odiorne.

Odiorne Point State Park: 603.436.7406
New Hampshire Division of Parks and Recreation's East Region: 603.436.1552

Fees as of 6/26/12:
  • Park Entry:  $4.00 for ages 12-adult; $2.00 for ages 6-11; children ages 5 and under and NH residents age 65 and over are admitted free (in-season)
  • Science Center Fee:  $5.00 for ages 13-adult; $2.00 for ages 3-12; children under age 3 and members are admitted free (year-round)

More Odiorne Point Trail Reports   

Kayaks and boats on the ocean (photo by Webmaster)


The trail (photo by Webmaster)

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