A Whole New World – Mount Crawford

Saturday was a great day for a hike. The sky was clear the sun was shining it was just warm enough to enjoy a hike without being too hot! It was also the first day of fall and the glorious calls of fall were already peeking out of their green shell to give an early flash of their vibrant reds, oranges, gold and yellows. It was a perfect day to explore Mount Crawford. It was about a 5 mile hike up and back. It is a 3119′ mountain. Make sure to always check the weather before hiking. Storms can be very dangerous in the mountains. Also a cloudy or fog day will limit the astounding views.

We took Davis Path to reach the peak of Mount Crawford. Davis Path was cut in 1845 by Nathaniel Davis. Davis was the son-in-law of Abel and Hannah Crawford.  The Crawfords and their growing family were the first family permitted to move into the Notch. They held such an influence on the area that the notch was named after them.  The Crawfords opened an inn and became known for guiding people up to Mount Washington. Davis cut the path up the Mount Crawford and all the way to Mount Washington. The path was 14.4 miles long and ran through the Presidentials and Dry River Wilderness. In the late 1800s the trail fell into disarray and was brought back up to adventure quality by Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC).

Davis Path trailhead is right off of route 302 about 6 miles north of Bear Notch Road. It has a good size parking lot. It doesn’t seem to be a very popular hike even though when the weather is nice it provides amazing views of Mount Washington, Tuckerman’s Ravine, Mount Carrigain, and Frankenstein Cliffs.  A large bridge over the Saco River, Called Bemis Bridge, is at the beginning of the trail.  The trail starts out gradually but then become rather steadily steep. The trail runs along a cliff for some time. The sound of running water and song birds is the sound track. Early on the path is very gravelly so it can be a trip hazard. Be careful especially on the descent.  The hike is five miles round trip after about 1.5 – 2 miles the views out over the notch are amazing on a clear day.  The peak offers both trees and rock but a short stroll around the summit will give you a clear view in all directions. We decided to have our snack and rest facing Mount Washington. It was breath taking.  The foliage was just beginning to change. Reds, oranges and golds mixed with summer greens surround Washington in a stunning early color display. The hike in total took us about 5 hours. Plan on longer if the moderate to challenging incline may be trying on you.  Crawford is not an easy hike but worth the effort for the prospect on top of Crawford is Dazzling!

Don’t forget to be safe while hiking and carry the appropriate gear with you while hiking even for a short day hike!


Hiking Lockes Hill Trail and Mount Major

Getting stunning views aren’t limited to the mountains in New Hampshire, how about amazing views of the beautiful lakes region? There are two great, easy to moderate hikes that offer wonderful views and a fun place to relax.  Lockes Hill Trail is a short trail that offers a stadium seating view of lakes.  A few miles further down the road another adventure awaits on Mount Major.

Lockes Hill

Lockes Hill Trail is a 2 mile hike located in Gilford’s Kimball Wildlife Forest off of route 11. It’s a woodsy family friendly little hike. Markers as well as a well cut path make this hike an easy one. I did it in flip flops although I never recommend any hiking in open toed shoes. This is a hike to be sought out on a clear day because the views from the rock made stadium seating are stunning. The lakes sparkled in the sunlight and were hugged by the distant mountain range that enclosed around them. This hike can be a quick one just to stretch your legs or a perfect place to spend a day for a nice picnic with the family. Chair made of rock surround the amazing views of the lakes and make for a very picturesque image.

Mount Major

Mount Major is a 1786ft mini mountain along the lakes region. It’s just a short drive from Alton Bay. The loop trail for Mount Major is about 4 miles long and can be steep. It is a fun trail for older children. Young children may struggle with the incline. This hike is a pretty steady rise but the views wasn’t you cross the tree line are well worth it. We started out hike on the boulder loop trail and descended on the Brook Trail. The trail on the way up is one color and on the way down is another. Make sure if you start on the blue trail to finish on the yellow trail or switch if you start on the yellow make sure you finish on the blue. Sun kissed lakes and distant mountains make for a very awing sight. This tree is also known to be an amazing foliage hike and view! So with fall upon us and foliage peaking over the next two weeks it may be time to get out and enjoy a hike.

Mount Major has a dilapidated structure when you reach the summit. This was a small house built by Mr. George Phippen, the previous land owner. He built the house for hikers, to help avoid in climate weather.  The old house, just four crumbling walls, still has an old fire pit inside and two benches outside. Its location offers the best view and sitting on the benches outside offers a great place to have a drink, snack or a nice picnic.

Foliage Hikes By NH Magazine

Foliage Hikes By NH Magazine

With the fall equinox fast on our heels, September 22, I thought this was a fun article for those of you looking for foliage and a fall hike.  It’s a good mix off challenging and family friendly. I also recently hiked Mount Major, hike #4 and will be blogging about that myself soon. It does offer amazing views!!! But check this article out. I’ll be posting more cool fall related articles in the days and weeks to come.


Check out the link above to see peak foliage!

Adventures at Pillsbury State Park

Pillsbury State park is located off of route 31 in Washington NH. This little gem of a recreational park is filled with adventures to enjoy and discover. It is rich with nature and beauty. The park offers camping, hiking, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, and wildlife exploration.  It’s a fun relaxing place to remove one’s self from the hustle and bustle of every day life.


North Pond

In the quiet of the woods of Pillsbury State Park, there are 35 campsites for families to gather and savor in the wilderness.  They offer bathrooms but no showers and the lakes and ponds are not for swimming because the bacteria levels are not tested and leaches could reside in them.  They offer campsites along trails and on the beaches of the ponds. Showers and swimming is available at Sunapee.  The campsites are clean and have nicely designed fire pits for s’mores and warmth.

May Pond
May Pond- Pillsbury State Park, Washington, NH

Hiking clears the head and relaxes the soul. Pillsbury offers 51 miles of trails.  These trails connect Mount Monadnock and Mount Sunapee. Some of the trails weave around the ponds and offer lovely views as well as an opportunity to view wildlife. The trails are well marked and easy to follow. The scenery is lovely and the fresh air is remarkable. The trails offer exercise and beauty especially in the fall.

Pillsbury offers about seven ponds for fishing, kayaking, and canoeing.  Don’t own a kayak or canoe. You can rent them and enjoy a trip around May Pond.  As you row about you can relish in the wilderness and take in the sights of the foliage. Out on the pond is a delicious way to enjoy a picnic and some romantic time together with someone special.

Keith on the Canoe
My husband on our canoe ride around May Pond.

Don’t forget to experience all of the wildlife around the park. Moose and loons have been seen in Pillsbury. Yesterday as my husband and I paddled around we saw loons and a blue heron. It was a beautiful sight to see a large bird like a heron perched on the edge of the pond and then to skim across the top of the pond.

Sometime we need to step away from the rush of the word and enjoy some peace and tranquility and Pillsbury State Park offers this. So pack a picnic and take the drive out to the park!

Concord’s Bustling Farmers’ Market

Although Farmers’ Market week and month are over I couldn’t pass up writing about Concord’s Farmers’ Market.  This market is open Saturday mornings from 8:30am to 12:00pm. It’s located downtown Concord on Capital Street. This market is the largest market I have been to so far. It claims to have, give or take, forty vendors. This market boasts the oldest farmers’ market in New Hampshire. It was started it 1981.


This market fills Capital Street. Young musician filled the fresh morning air with their sweet melodies. A violinist and mandolin player strummed their instruments extremely well together. Buzzing with eager shoppers, the market busy from the time I arrived till the time I left. This market offered everything a Saturday morning shopper could need, including your morning cups of coffee and a fresh homemade apple cider donut!  Coffee was provided by Granite Ledge Coffee. Fresh brewed was offer for a $1.50 and it was delicious! As for the apple cider donut they were provided by Chichester Country Store. I decided to try the apple cider donut with the maple frosting on top! Yum!! This tasty breakfast, woke me up an really got me ready to enjoy the farmers’ market which had so much to offer.



The market offers fresh flower, veggies (organic and conventional), good meat varieties, eggs, baked goods, dog treats, coffee, seasonings, soaps, cheeses really almost anything you can find on the out skirts of you grocery store. As I said it was a large market and the venders were very friendly. Many offered samples of their products and they were excellent.

Saturday I was on a mission though. My friend, Mel, and I were hosting a local dinner night and we were doing a football/ fall themed food. So we had decided to make nachos, chili, and serve and ice cream dish. So my mission was nachos. I needed some form of chips, and salsa. The cheese and ground meat I had purchase previously from Yankee Farmer’s Market in Warner, NH. Although come to find out I could have purchased these at the market too.

So the chips, I thought would be the hard part, turned out to be the easy part! At the market there was a company called Craquelin. They specialize in artisan flat bread.  These wonderfully tasty cracker/ chips came in a variety of flavors and textures. I decided on the jalapeno cheddar and spicy ten seed. After a sample of each, I couldn’t pass these up as my chips for the nachos.


As I said I purchased ground meat from Yankees Farmer’s Market. I had chosen ground bison to offer my guests a change from grocery store ground beef. The bison was excellent but at the market I discover two other sources of meat that would have also worked well.  Cascade Brook Farm offers grass fed Angus Beef as well as their Berkshire Pork which offers a different taste and texture then regular pork. Also available for the adventurous, from Bonnie Brae Farms, is farm raised venison. The meat is tender and delicious.




Of course what would nachos be without salsa?  The market offered a wonderful selection organic produce. I was able to get peppers, onions, tomatoes and garlic from two different venders. The one I really got to talk to was the farmer from Vegetable Ranch. He had large beautiful produce in rich colors, smelling fresh and tasty. The farmer was a charming man fill of information about organic farming and farmers’ markets.


Lastly I needed cheese, which I had previously purchased from Yankee Farmer’s Market. It was country smoked pepper jack from Fox Smokehouse in Canterbury, although Concord’s Farmers’ Market also had cheese options. One option I thought would have been fun would have been goat cheese from Heart Song Farm. They offered a variety of flavors and all the ones I tried were very tasty and would have worked well. Check out the recipe below. It’s easy and ingredients are easily substituted.


1 extra large tomato

5-10 cherry tomatoes either red or golden

1 medium onion

1 medium green bell pepper

1-2 red or green jalapeno (Depending on how hot you like it. Red is hot green is mild to medium)

1-3 cloves of garlic

Garlic pepper salt to taste (I like Two Sisters Garlic out of Canterbury.)

Cilantro to taste



2 5 oz packages of broken up bags Craquelins

1-2 cups of ground or shredded meat cooked with your favorite taco seasoning

1-2 cups of salsa

1-2 cups of your favorite cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. On a cookie sheet lay out your Craquelins first, then layer the ground meat out on top of the craquelins, layer the salsa on top of the meat and finally layer the cheese on top of the salsa. Bake for 5-10 minutes, until the cheese melts. Then ENJOY!!