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Exploratory Overnight in NH

Old 06-05-19, 03:52 PM
  #1  
chiefsilverback
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Exploratory Overnight in NH

I'm planning my first overnight trip, with an out and back from my home to Pillsbury State Park north of Washington NH. I'm playing with routes in Komoot and I've got one that would take me along either the King's Highway, or Barden Pond Road from Stoddard up to Washington. Does anyone have experience riding this area who could confirm if they are usable routes?

Apple Maps does not offer either as an option to drive between those two towns, and Apple Maps has taken me along some pretty rough roads in the past, think "I'm not sure my Subaru Outback will make it along here" rough!
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Old 06-06-19, 06:12 AM
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If you play around with Google Maps Street View you can see that Kings Highway is paved as it leaves Stoddard but at some point appears to become dirt:

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.0985...!7i3328!8i1664

How long the unpaved stretch is is not known.

King's Highway ends at Faxon Hill, which is paved to NH 31, but it looks in rough shape. However, the image is from 2009. Maybe it's been resurfaced since then.
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Old 06-06-19, 07:08 AM
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I live in the area and have never found a good route from Stoddard to Washington. I don't remember the specific roads you mention, but I couldn't find a way through. Here's a link to roads I've been on from Peterborough to Washington. ridewithgps.com/routes/30195717. (I can't post the full url. Hope this works.) Mostly low traffic, good shoulder on 202, some beautiful dirt roads, particularly from Hancock to Antrim and Hillsborough to East Washington. A couple of short, steep hills.
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Old 06-06-19, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Ruckusdog View Post
Mostly low traffic, good shoulder on 202, some beautiful dirt roads, particularly from Hancock to Antrim and Hillsborough to East Washington. A couple of short, steep hills.
Thanks for the info, I rode the Hancock to Antrim stretch last year and it is a nice ride, I did Peterborough>Greenfield>Bennington>Antrim>Hancock>Peterborough, there was a nice section from Bennington to Antrim too.

202 does have a nice shoulder, but if I can avoid it I do, especially at the moment with rte 9 closed trucks in Keene and diverting down 202 and along 101.
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Old 06-06-19, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
If you play around with Google Maps Street View you can see that Kings Highway is paved as it leaves Stoddard but at some point appears to become dirt:

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.0985...!7i3328!8i1664

How long the unpaved stretch is is not known.

King's Highway ends at Faxon Hill, which is paved to NH 31, but it looks in rough shape. However, the image is from 2009. Maybe it's been resurfaced since then.
Thanks for the reminder about street view, I use Apple Maps so never think to go to Google. I guess I need to take my MTB up to Stoddard and see if I can find a route through there. I donít know how reliable Komoot is in terms of if it says thereís a route then itís actually navigable?
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Old 06-18-19, 07:45 AM
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I took a drive up to Stoddard this morning to check out King's Highway from Stoddard to Washington. It actually looks drivable, because it appears to have been recently 'surfaced' with loose packed 1.5" crushed stone. Probably on a fat bike with squidgy tires you could get through it...
My back wheel was spinning like I was trying to pedal on water.
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Old 06-18-19, 07:52 AM
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Ugh, I hate that kind of large loose gravel. We had some put in a mudpatch in a park two years back. First year I learned the hard way to dismount and walk if there were people walking on the very edge where it was still mostly dirt and so rideable. Last year it was okay when wet. This year the mud has absorbed the aggregate making a sort of mud concrete when dry. They're supposed to pave this fall otherwise I'd say by next spring it would be time for another load of stone.
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Old 06-21-19, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Ruckusdog View Post
I live in the area and have never found a good route from Stoddard to Washington. I don't remember the specific roads you mention, but I couldn't find a way through. Here's a link to roads I've been on from Peterborough to Washington. ridewithgps.com/routes/30195717. (I can't post the full url. Hope this works.) Mostly low traffic, good shoulder on 202, some beautiful dirt roads, particularly from Hancock to Antrim and Hillsborough to East Washington. A couple of short, steep hills.
I picked up a riding buddy for this trip, who happens to work with the Selectman for Stoddard so he got some good intel on the roads around there. The route we've settled on for out outbound leg is heading out NW from Peterborough to Harrisville, up to Nelson, then due north on the Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway, cross 9 and pickup Center Pond Rd to Stoddard. Head up 123 a short way and then use Jeft Rd to go round the west side of Pitcher mountain to Washington. Just under 40 miles and 4000' of climbing. Here's hoping we can pick up a chilled 6 pack at the store in Washington!

We'll take a variation of the route you shared for the return, maybe come down the east of 202, through Antrim and Bennington?
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Old 06-21-19, 07:17 AM
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Originally Posted by chiefsilverback View Post
I picked up a riding buddy for this trip, who happens to work with the Selectman for Stoddard so he got some good intel on the roads around there. The route we've settled on for out outbound leg is heading out NW from Peterborough to Harrisville, up to Nelson, then due north on the Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway, cross 9 and pickup Center Pond Rd to Stoddard. Head up 123 a short way and then use Jeft Rd to go round the west side of Pitcher mountain to Washington. Just under 40 miles and 4000' of climbing. Here's hoping we can pick up a chilled 6 pack at the store in Washington!

We'll take a variation of the route you shared for the return, maybe come down the east of 202, through Antrim and Bennington?
Thanks for sharing the route. I'll give it a try one of these days. One thousand feet of climbing for every 10 miles sounds typical for this area.

FWIW I rode from Peterborough to Harrisville on Monday. Hancock Road from 137 to Jaquith Rd. was completely torn up down to loose dirt. They will be re-paving all the way up to Harrisville. Had to do some walking, even with 650b x 42 knobby tires.
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Old 06-21-19, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by chiefsilverback View Post
I picked up a riding buddy for this trip, who happens to work with the Selectman for Stoddard so he got some good intel on the roads around there. The route we've settled on for out outbound leg is heading out NW from Peterborough to Harrisville, up to Nelson, then due north on the Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway, cross 9 and pickup Center Pond Rd to Stoddard. Head up 123 a short way and then use Jeft Rd to go round the west side of Pitcher mountain to Washington. Just under 40 miles and 4000' of climbing. Here's hoping we can pick up a chilled 6 pack at the store in Washington!

We'll take a variation of the route you shared for the return, maybe come down the east of 202, through Antrim and Bennington?
Thanks for sharing the route.

FWIW I rode from Peterborough to Harrisville on Monday. Hancock Road from Route 137 to Jacquith Road was being torn up down to the dirt for re-paving. Very loose soil. Had to walk some, even with 650b x 42 knobby tires.
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Old 06-21-19, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Ruckusdog View Post
Thanks for sharing the route.

FWIW I rode from Peterborough to Harrisville on Monday. Hancock Road from Route 137 to Jacquith Road was being torn up down to the dirt for re-paving. Very loose soil. Had to walk some, even with 650b x 42 knobby tires.
Thanks for the heads up, I might jump in the car and swing round to see if it's rideable yet, otherwise we could detour south on 137 and take Cobb Meadow...
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Old 06-22-19, 12:14 PM
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Ride complete, they were just finishing compacting Hancock Rd, so that was fine, but Center Pond and Jefts roads are not to be recommended, unless you like pushing your bike and getting wet and muddy!

75 miles total, and nearly 5,800í of climbing.

The rail trail from Deering down to Bennington is quite nice, a little soft in places but overall a nice way to cover that distance.


Last edited by chiefsilverback; 06-23-19 at 06:09 PM.
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