White Mountains, NH and Hurricane Mountain Road - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-27-2017, 08:39 AM Thread Starter
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White Mountains, NH and Hurricane Mountain Road

Last year a few friends of mine from the Nighthawk forum came out to New England for a very small rally. We had great weather except on the last day so they never got to ride Hurricane Mountain Road... I had never been on Hurricane Mountain Road. So this year I took a Saturday and rode up through the White Mountains in New Hampshire and visited some old haunts on my new bike and at the end of the day found Hurricane Mountain Road and got to see what all the fuss was about.


I've have gone past this shop countless times and today decided to stop. It's full of odd and old items, I suppose some may be considered antiques but others are just flat out strange like an old-timey slot machine with The Force Awakens graphics on the header and wheels. If you're in the area (it's on the east end of the Kancamagus Highway) stop in just for the weirdness.



Close up of the Swift River. The water has finally come down a bit, it was very fast and deep this spring and early summer.



At the top of the Kancamagus Highway. As mountain highways go it isn't very high, just under 3,000 feet of elevation. Still some amazing views.



A good number of riders out today. I saw a large Harley rally and there were decent sized groups of them prowling around.



I've been up in this area a lot and have some favorite places to stop and eat. Tried something new this time, Nachos Cafe in Lincoln. The salsa was awful, tasted like stewed tomatoes. Saw a few folks adding hot sauce to the salsa My tacos on the other hand were excellent, they were so good I ate them before I thought to take a photo.



Once again I stopped by the Basin. It's a natural shaped bowl formation made by rushing water. It's a neat area along the Fraconia Notch Parkway with easy parking and a brief pleasant walk through the forest.



The Cog Railway. These old trains are set up alongside the road as advertising for the still functioning train that travels up to the top of Mount Washington.



Here we are at the beginning of the descent at Crawford Notch. Some some sharp twists and turns before it turns into sweepers as you make your way down the slope.



Shrooms.



The scenic view overlooking Crawford Notch.



The Versys alongside Saco Lake.



Here it is, the beginning of Hurricane Mountain Road. Just north of North Conway you can find the entrance. If you look at a map you won't be too impressed or intimidated. A few twists and turns is all it looks like. The experience is quite different, large vehicles and trucks are warned not to use the road and it is barred for passage in winter. The road itself is quite narrow, maybe a standard lane and a little more wide. It's twistier than the map suggests and it's steep in places with a lot of undulating whoop-de-doos as you ascend from the west. The quality of the road itself is good to fair. Not really any potholes but lots of ripples and cracks and off camber in places. The ripples can really mess up your tracking through a turn so you have to stay alert.



I traveled the west to east route. As I stated the road is very narrow and there is no shoulder for the most part. At the very peak there is a gravel driveway and parking lot for hikers. At one neat spot you pass through a very small clearing and can see the state of Maine stretching out as far as the eye can see, it's an amazing view. Sadly there was no place to pull over to get that photo, not that it would turn out too well with my camera.



A good example of the road.



The Versys parked along one of the few flat spots along Hurricane Mountain Road

It was a great day in the saddle and my first time riding the Versys all day. Glad I got to give Hurricane Mountain Road a try, it's a neat stretch of road but kinda short. Hope you enjoyed the ride!
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Last edited by Turk; 08-27-2017 at 12:46 PM.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-27-2017, 01:19 PM
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Been a long time, Smugglers' Notch Vermont, Pinkham Notch, many years ago we were at the Trap Family lodge skiing. Also in 1976 we did the Appalachian trail Hut system, Mount Washington was one of those we passed, very funny watching the people come up in the cog railway, engineer was black from the soft coal they were burning, all open coaches so all the people got a bit of the black smoke for no extra charge. That was also a very dangerous place to be as a hiker, http://www.usaf50summits.com/uploads...230516.jpg?537 , we actually had a incident and it took over a hour to descend to the hut from the observatory ( middle of July), plus one person suffering from mild hypothermia. All experienced at this and had training .
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-27-2017, 03:03 PM
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great shots Turk! - thanks for posting. It's been a long time since I've been up that way, hiking the Appalachian Trail through the Presidential Range. Gorgeous!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-27-2017, 03:48 PM
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Hurricane Mtn Rd is a lot of fun, I've run it both ways a few times, a little faster each time.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-27-2017, 05:27 PM
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Thanks for the pictures. I used to do a lot of hiking in those mountains and was able to visit on the Concours in 2014.

Hurricane Mountain Road is like all the roads I ride here in Middle Tennessee. Of course some of ours are still gravel as well. The Trans American Trail passes 1/2 mile from my house.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2017, 09:42 AM Thread Starter
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Been a long time, Smugglers' Notch Vermont, Pinkham Notch, many years ago we were at the Trap Family lodge skiing. Also in 1976 we did the Appalachian trail Hut system, Mount Washington was one of those we passed, very funny watching the people come up in the cog railway, engineer was black from the soft coal they were burning, all open coaches so all the people got a bit of the black smoke for no extra charge. That was also a very dangerous place to be as a hiker, http://www.usaf50summits.com/uploads...230516.jpg?537 , we actually had a incident and it took over a hour to descend to the hut from the observatory ( middle of July), plus one person suffering from mild hypothermia. All experienced at this and had training .

I've been to a few of those places in Vermont and rode my mountain bike on the trails at the Trapp Family Lodge. After riding to the top of Mount Washington last year I had thought my wife and I might make a go of hiking to the summit. We are casual hikers and have done a few big treks but if it is truly challenging maybe we should pass. Here are a few photos from last years ride up Mt Washington. It was extremely foggy at the peak.


The summit sign.


The Cog train coming into station.


Didn't have the Versys then, made the climb with the Ninja.


The view down the mountain.


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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2017, 09:44 AM Thread Starter
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Hurricane Mtn Rd is a lot of fun, I've run it both ways a few times, a little faster each time.
I think my top speed for a short burst was around 40mph but most of the time I was much, much slower. I suppose a few runs through and I might get more aggressive, I had the biggest problem with the rippled pavement moving my bike side to side when I was setting up for a turn or coming out of one.


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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2017, 09:46 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the pictures. I used to do a lot of hiking in those mountains and was able to visit on the Concours in 2014.

Hurricane Mountain Road is like all the roads I ride here in Middle Tennessee. Of course some of ours are still gravel as well. The Trans American Trail passes 1/2 mile from my house.
I would love to ride out in Tennessee. I was in Nashville two years ago between Christmas and New Year's, we drove down and I remember thinking to myself how much I wish I had my bike.


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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2017, 09:49 PM
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I would love to ride out in Tennessee. I was in Nashville two years ago between Christmas and New Year's, we drove down and I remember thinking to myself how much I wish I had my bike.
We have a lot of great riding and a lot of mostly vacant roads to ride. Of course we also have the tourist roads at the east end of the state.

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