Wednesday, October 19, 2016

NORTHEAST EXCURSION - DAY 3 AM

After our night in Gorham, New Hampshire at the Top Notch Inn (very nice place), we grabbed coffee at White Mountain Cafe and Bookstore and had our breakfast at a picnic table behind the cafe, next to the river.  The weather was very pleasant and it was quiet and peaceful.



Breakfast by the river.


We headed out on the road to Mount Washington.


We saw some wildlife in New Hampshire.

First destination today was the Mount Washington Auto Road where you can drive your own car to the highest peak in the region or you can take a shuttle.  We drove our rental car.

When we pulled up to the booth to pay, the man there said, "Are you sure you want to go up?  The roads are windy, steep and narrow with no guard rails, there is one section that is not paved.  And there is zero visibility at the top with 70 mph winds."
What the heck, why not?  We paid our $36, which included a dvd spoken tour and a bumper sticker.  We inserted the dvd and started up.  We were one of the first ones to go up, so we didn't encounter anyone heading down, which was nice.  The road was steep. But it was soooo beautiful!






video



At the half way point, we stopped and got out.  It was definitely windy!

Once we got above the tree line and into the clouds we couldn't see much of anything, and I didn't take any pictures.  At the top, we could barely see the parking lot, but we parked and took some stairs up.  The wind was blowing very hard!  We couldn't see the building and the only way we found it was by following the rubber mats that were laid down.  Once into the building and out of the winds we caught our breathe and wondered how we'd ever get back to the car.

We bought some souveniers, which were on sale, because this was the last week they'd be open this year.  We went down to the museum to read about the history and see the historic photos.

We tried to go up to the summit, which was outside the building and a few steps up some rocks, but the winds were too strong for me.  I couldn't see anything, my hair was whipping about and the rain had fouled my glasses.  My collar on my coat kept smacking me in the face.  I was not having a great time.  But we loved it.  
It's unfortunate that because of the cloud cover we didn't get to see the 360 degree view from the highest point in the White Mountains (6288 ft elevation) but it was a rare event to experience that kind of weather.

 We were very happy we came!


Back in the car, wet and dishevelled. 
The trip down was harrowing.  They said to use low gear and give your brakes a chance to cool off by pulling over occassionally.






















Once we were down, we pulled over at the gift shop to let the brakes cool.  You could smell that they were overheated.  I used their restroom and tried to comb the tangles out of my hair and make myself somewhat presentable again.

Then we continued south on Hwy 16 to North Conway where we picked up some Turkey Reuben sandwiches at a small organic grocer/deli called The Local Grocer.  We left there and headed north to Hwy 302.






We stopped for a short walk in the woods at a place called Wiley House.  There was a stream with a big fish pond.  We traversed the bridge across the pond and meandered in the lovely trees.  It was a beautiful day!







We were now headed north and around to the other side of Mount Washington on our way to Vermont.

The other side of Mount Washinton - still covered in clouds.

We pulled over at a view point to take this picture of the other side of Mount Washington.  There is a huge resort which was opened in 1902, the Mt. Washington Resort Hotel.  We decided we'd stay there next time we come this way.  

We continued on to Littleton New Hampshire to a little quilt shop I wanted to stop at.  After I did some shopping, we walked over to the river and sat at some picnic tables in the sun and enjoyed our sandwiches and the quiet.

We couldn't have asked for more perfect weather for our trip through New Hampshire.





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