No matter the season, the greater Mount Washington Valley region is surrounded by picturesque landscapes, from rolling rivers and towering mountain peaks to the vibrant greens of pine forests contrasted by a stand of white birch. If you look close enough, you may just be surprised to see the quiet giant of the North Woods looking back. For the scenic drives described below not only provide the best access to scenic landscapes, they also boast the greatest chances of seeing a moose.
KANCAMAGUS HIGHWAY (Route 112)
Route 16S through Conway NH, to Route 112 on right
The Kancamagus Highway is a 34.5 mile scenic drive along NH’s Rt. 112 in Northern New Hampshire that is well known as one of the best Fall Foliage viewing areas in the country. The Kancamagus Highway is now designated an American Scenic Byway for its rich history, aesthetic beauty and culture. The Kancamagus Scenic Byway takes you through a path cut through the White Mountain National Forest with breathtaking views of the White Mountains, the Swift River, Sabbaday Falls, Lower Falls and Rocky Gorge. The Kanc takes you to an elevation of just under 3,000 feet at its highest point at Kancamagus Pass on the flank of Mt. Kancamagus.
Route 16N past Jackson, NH
The mountain pass Pinkham Notch is named after Daniel Pinkham who explored this area in the 1700s on a sled pulled by a pig. Carved by glaciers, erosion and rivers, Pinkham Notch separates the Presidential, Wildcat and Carter-Moriah Ranges, creating a stunning landscape. Marvel at picture-perfect snow-dusted peaks and expansive views.
Route 302 West beyond Bartlett, NH
Crawford Notch is the steep and narrow gorge originally cut by the Saco River in New Hampshire’s White Mountains. The gorge is bisected by U.S. Highway 302 and the Saco, offering majestic cliffside views rising from the banks of the river. While entering the last leg and steepest ascent of the Notch, travelers are welcomed by the towering granite cliffs of Mount Willard.