We were on a modern V8 48 seater coach when we pulled into the Plume roadhouse for our morning break during our journey Boston to Quebec in May 2007. The roadhouse was large and modern and in the centre of a large open area was this fine stagecoach from the 1800s'.
I immediately wanted a photo and then saw the notice giving the history of this fine museum piece. Built by Abbott, Downing & Co of Concord NH this coach #431 was built in 1874 to transport mail and passengers between Plymouth, NH and the Profile House in Franconia, making its last run in 1911.
The flume is an experience worth the $10 entry fee (children 6-12: $7; under 5: free). After a short hike, you’re inside the gorge. Water pours from above, endlessly flowing through the gorge and down Table Rock (500 ft long X 75 ft wide section of Conway granite, lies left of the trailside).
The flume extends 800 ft at the base of Mt. Liberty. Its Conway granite walls are 70 to 90 ft high, 12 to 20 ft apart. Nearly 200 million years ago (Jurassic Age), the Conway granite was deeply buried molten rock. It cooled and was broken by closely spaced vertical fractures. After fractures formed, small basalt dikes came from deep within the earth and were forced by pressure up into the Conway granite. The basalt crystallized against the cooler granite. If it had reached the surface, the basalt would have become lava, but because of quick cooling it became fine grained rock. Erosion lowered the earth’s surface and exposed the basalt dikes. Overlying rock wore away, pressure was relieved, and horizontal cracks developed, allowing water into the rock layers. The basalt dikes eroded faster than the surrounding granite; this created a deepening valley (now the gorge). The gorge was covered by glaciers during the Ice Age; however, this didn’t much change its surface. The Flume was discovered in 1808 by “Aunt Jess,” a 93-year-old woman out fishing. At this time, a huge egg-shaped boulder hung suspended between the gorge walls. A heavy rainstorm in 1883 started a landslide that swept the boulder (which hasn’t been found!) away; this storm also deepened the gorge and formed Avalanche Falls.
Round trip = 2 miles, ~1 hr, 15 min; bus takes ~15 min off total walk; Also option for return bus, total ~40 min. but you’ll only see the Flume, no other sites.
Covered bridge (Pemigewasset) (erected in 1886)
The Pool (deep basin in Pemi, formed at end of Ice Age; 40 ft deep, 150 ft dia) surrounded by 130 ft high cliffs
Sentinel Pine Covered Bridge
The Old Man of the Mountain, nicknamed the Great Stone Face or Profile, was located in Franconia Notch State Park. The Old Man of the Mountain was scenically set 1200 feet above Profile Lake. Discovered in 1805, the rocks that made up the profile collapsed on May 3, 2003.
Here is a photo taken in 1996 during my visit to Franconic Notch State Park with the intact Old Man.
The road is usually open.
even after a storm because
it's a major route - US Route 93.
Check weather reports.
Ice and frosted snow gets stuck to the
heights of the cliffs and makes for
a unique view.
The majority of our camping trip was spent at this wonderful mountain lake. My Uncle brought his boat with him, so we had hours of entertainment at our finger tips. Not only did I give water skiing a try (without much success) but we also had contests on who could get my Aunt the wettest. My time spent behind the wheel here helped me bone up on my driving skills. When I go bored I simply played in the sand or sunned myself on the beach. There were endless hiking trails available also.
Back in 1990 I went on a camping trip with my Uncle Paul, his girlfriend Kitty and my Aunt Dody (aka the nun). One of the things we visited was the The River Gorge. What this essentially is, is an under ground river/stream which is accessed by a series of caves, caverns, walkways and bridges. There is one cave in particular, The Lemon Squeezer, that is famous, mostly because many folks can't squeeze through it, but it's funny watching people try. Admission is as follows, adults $11.50, children ages 4-12... $7.50 and and children ages 3, 2 and 1 w/adult are free. The Lost River is open July and August 9am - 6pm, and May, June, September and October 9am - 5pm. The last ticket sold 60 minutes before closing. Since I wasn't a shutter bug back then I can only put a scanned in brochure that I've saved all these years. I hope you visit and enjoy it as much as I did.
Don't be put off by what some might consider a steep price tag (last I checked, $8 per adult). This is one of the sights that you'll want to go ahead and splurge on. The Flume is a nearly 1,000 foot gorge that hosts the Flume Brook, a rapid, noisy waterway. You cross back and forth over the brook via a set of boardwalks, and end at a large waterfall. While there are many great hikes and falls throughout the White Mountains, this attraction is a nifty one, and worth the time and money.
When we visited, we were looking forward to seeing the natural landmark that is made famous via the state quarter, state signs, etc. Alas, we arrived a few months after the poor guy came crashing down. Now, you can take a very short hike to where the viewpoint once was, and read some signs discussing the untimely end to this landmark. It's a sad tale that the locals new was coming, and the hike is very short, so it's worth a stop.
The Old Man of the Mountain, nicknamed the Great Stone Face or Profile, was once located in Franconia Notch State Park. The Old Man of the Mountain was scenically set 1,200' above Profile Lake. Discovered in 1805, the rocks that made up the profile collapsed on May 3, 2003.
The Old Man of the Mountain was once able to be viewed year-round from two different viewing areas on I-93 in Franconia Notch State Park.
On the northbound side of the highway there is a pull-off and on the southbound side take Exit 34B and follow signs.
Yet another fabulous view from my camping trip to New Hampshire. You really need the binoculars for this one though.
The Basin is essentially a "granite pothole" It is 20 feet in diameted and believed to have been formed from erosion more than 15,000 years ago. The Pemigewasset River flows into the Basin through a small waterfall. The swirling motion of the river has cause small stones and sand to continue the erosion process. A water-eroded rock formation better know as the Old Man's foot can be found below the Basin.
The Basin can be accessed from the northbound and southbound directions. There are picnic tables and walking paths, as well as hiking trails.
This is yet another one of the beautiful sites I saw as a teen on that fantastic camping trip with my relatives.
Boise rock is names after Thomas Boise. He was a teamster from Woodstock New Hampshire. In the early 1800's he was caught in a blizzard and sought shelter under this boudler. In order to survice he killed his horse, skinned it and wrapped himself in its hide. A search party found him the next day and had to cut away the horses frozen hide. Near the boulder you can find a cool spring, picnic tables, and an exceptional view of Cannon Cliffs.
Boise Rock is only accessible from the northbound side of the highway.
The Flume was discovered in 1808 and is a natural gorge. It extends 800 feet at the base of Mount Liberty. The walls which are made of Conway granite, rise to a height of 70 to 90 feet and are 12 to 20 feet apart. A hike of the Flume begins and ends at the Flume Visitor's Center. In the visitor center are the Flume ticket office, an information center, a cafeteria, a gift shope and the state park system's historic Concord Coach. The visitor center is framed by a spectacular view of Mount Liberty and Mount Flume.
I first visited the Flume as a teenager when on a camping trip with my aunts and uncle. We had an awesome time. I will be bringing my son to see these wonderful natural wonders this fall.
The Flume Gorge is a narrow, deep crevice that carries a creek at the bottom. You can take the pathway along the rim of the gorge, or you can take the wooden walkway inside the gorge itself, coming up close and personal to each waterfall (a staircase at the end brings the walkway out to join up with the path). In the winter, giant icicles hang from every crack in the stone walls.
A short ride up to the top of a 4000 foot mountain
Beautiful views mainly to the north, west and east.
Do on a really clear day for best results.
In winter this is a ski lift
A short trail leads you to--surprise!--a large rock basin. It's amazing what water can do to stone over the course of millions of years.