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Questions ~ First time to North Conway

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Questions ~ First time to North Conway

Hi:

My husband and I will be visiting North Conway for the first time in late January 2010. We are staying at the Crown Ridge Resort. Our friends with their son may come with us but won't know until late this year.

I have questions regarding the area and if anyone can respond it would be greatly appreciated.

Skiing ~ I noticed that there are three ski areas near the timeshare resort (Cranmore, Attitash and Black Mtn.). For those that skied at any of these places... what did you think of it? I ski alone and I prefer the beginner and intermediate trails.

Horseback Riding ~ Are there any facilities nearby that will offer a trail ride in late January? Most likely I'll be going alone.

Restaurants ~ Any suggestions on good places to eat? We like mid-range, off-the-wall fun places, laid back type restaurants. We love breweries as well.

Attractions ~ Any suggestions?

Travel ~ We plan on driving to Freeport, ME and stay there the night before. From searching on Google Maps... it looks like we are approximately two hours from the resort. Google Maps offered three routes to take from Freeport and I'm not sure which one is the best. We would like to stop at Hannaford in town prior to checking in so not sure if that makes a big difference. For those that travels from ME to North Conway... please let me know which is the best route to take.

Thank you in advance for all of your help.

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North Conway, NH
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1. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

Skiing- My fave is Attitash. Lots of great cruising skiing across 2 slopes means no boredom.

Cranmore is smaller but very nice

Black is more of a locals mountain, I think. Someone will correct me if I am wrong.

Wildcat has more upper intermediate/expert slopes with less grooming but the most incredible views on a clear day across the road to MW.

Horseback Riding- don't know the answer but if you search the topic, you will find the answer .

Restaurants.

Here is a list- not exhaustive.

tripadvisor.com/GoListDetail-i20158-Restaura…

Wildcat Tavern, Red Parka Pub, Moat Mountain have lots of local charm. Check out the prior posts and reviews for more suggestions.

Not many attractions open in January unless you have something specific in mind.

I assume you are talking about the grocery store. As long as your trip comes from the southern end of NC, you will pass it.

I am not familiar with the ME to NH trip.

Have a great trip.

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2. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

Don't know about the skiing part, but love North Conway! Lots of good places to eat, Red Parka Pub in Glen is one. Everyone will have a recommendation for their favorite. We drive from Maine to North Conway and we take 302 west, getting off I95 at Exit 63 at Grey. Just follow the signs for 302 west and you shouldn't have any problems. It takes you through several small towns in Maine before crossing over at Fryeburg into NH. If you want more detailed directions, let me know, I can send them to you.

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Conway, NH
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3. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

My family home is within walking distance of Crown Ridge in Kearsarge. In fact the land it sits on was where I played in the woods while growing up there. Cranmore is certainly the closest ski area. In fact, you could walk there from Crown Ridge. Attitash is probably the most popular in the area.

Hanafords and Shaws grocery stores are both located at the south end of North Conway and are both good options.

Use Neslaw's list for restaurants. There are so many to choose from. My personal favorites include Jonathon's and Rt 302 Smokehouse. We always seem to end up at the Scarecrow Pub because it's close and convenient. The food isn't my favorite but the bar crowd includes some of my closest life long friends. Great local crowd.

For nicer dinners try 1785 Inn, Thompson House Eatery or Darby Fields.

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North Conway, NH
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4. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

Just checked Google Maps to be sure I knew which routes you were considering. It only showed me two choices, but of the two I would strongly recommend the one which goes through Gray and uses US 302 through Bridgton and Fryeburg -- especially if you happen to be traveling on a snowy day. The Rt 133/Rt 5 option can be a scenic ride at some times of the year (not so much in the wintertime), but, in general, is a narrower road with narrower roadside shoulders. I go US 302....

If you do go that way, as you come into North Conway from East Conway, the Shaw's Supermarket will be on your left, the Hannaford about a half mile up the road in a small shopping center on your right. Both are good but the Shaw's is slightly bigger with slightly more variety (at least in our experiences visiting our North Conway timeshare).

If you like that kind of thing, toward the north end of the North Conway business district (between Schuler Park and the Eastern Slope Inn) is a place (the name escapes me at the moment) that specializes in pre-made meals that you can take back to your timeshare and re-heat. We found them very handy for some of our timeshare stays.

Favorite restaurants/pubs with a laid-back, easy atmosphere on our list include:

-- Flatbread & Company, in the Eastern Slope Inn -- good selection of local micro-brews, wood-fired-oven baked flatbreads (like a pizza except that the dough doesn't rise), an emphasis on "natural, locally grown" ingredients, and a unique, non-pretentious, relaxing atmosphere.

-- Moat Mountain Brewhause -- their own on-premise micro-brews and a great menu if you're looking for various kinds of meals, sandwiches and munchies

-- May Kelly's Irish Cottage -- genuine Irish fare, plus various other choices, a nice beer selection, and, at least the last time we were there, a Sunday afternoon jam session of Irish music -- lots of fun!

-- If you're tempted to go our for breakfast, we like Banner's, on Rt 16 south between North Conway and Conway -- informal with hearty servings of good basic breakfast fare. Other's will also suggest Peaches, a long-standing North Conway tradition -- we think it's okay, but frankly like the food at Banner's better.

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Conway, NH
Conway
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White Mountains, NH
Eastern Slope Inn
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5. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

We are back down to North Conway at the end of January too - maybe we will see you on the slopes.

We like Wildcat the best - and my wife is a beginner skier. As neslaw1 mentioned the views across from Wildcat (of Tuckerman's Ravine) are excellent. (Side Note: It is worth hiking up to the base of Tuckerman's too - if you want to try something other than skiing one day).

We have tried all of the hills in the surrounding area (Wildcat, Attitash, Bretton Woods, Cranmore, Loon Mountain, Sunday River) but not Black Mountain. It is everyone's individual preference, but we did not really like Attitash (maybe it deserves another try). Cranmore is okay for beginners.

Again, the list of recommended restaurants will usually vary amongst the people posting - but I believe you will hear Moat Mountain House alot (it is great - try the 7 Beer Taster) - as well as Flatbread Pizza, Muddy Moose (was always our favourite - but there are tons of other great choices). Red Fox (in Jackson is pretty good). Have yet to try Mae Kelleys' and Delaney's (may have to try them in January!). The list is endless.

I also have to try Rte Smokehouse, but we could not find it (???) when we were there in September. RedRox - can you give directions to the Smokehouse? (RedRox - We have stayed in the Kearsage area over a half dozen times - at Cathedral Ledge Resort - it is a little tired/worn out, but the location is excellent. We actually got married at the Scenic Lookout right across Hwy 16, the one that was re-built a few years ago - small world!)

Hannaford's is where we go for groceries too. They have a great health food/organic section, if that is on your menu.

Horseback riding?... there was a place up near Attitash (horse stables) - but I am not sure if it is open in January.

I am not familiar with the drive from Maine - sorry.

Enjoy your trip! You will love the area.

Denny

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6. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

neslaw1:

Thank your for the restaurant list and indicating what the local places are. I'll be checking that out in a little bit.

I appreciate the feedback on the skiing areas as well. Since I ski alone... I may stick to the smaller places which I would be more comfortable at but then again I may change my mind.

Hannaford is the grocery store that I was talking about.

Thank you again for all of the information! :-)

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7. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

K.C.NovaScotia:

Greatly appreciate your feedback! Seems like we'll have a lot of great restaurants to try in this area. I spent many hours researching NH and something about North Conway really hit home with me. Seems like there's a little bit of everything to do there and it's a great area.

One of the options we have is taking 302. If you could kindly send me the detail directions that would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you again!

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8. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

RedRox:

I can tell by your post how much you love your home town! That's wonderful!

Is Cranmore located on North Chair Rd (off of Old Bartlett Rd)? Google Maps indicated Skimobile Road when I typed in the directions from Crown Ridge to Cranmore. When I zoomed in using the satellite, it didn't look right until I was scanning the are and noticed what looked like Cranmore.

We like Shaw's as well so good to know that there's another grocery store there besides Hannaford.

Thank you for the restaurant feedback as well. I'll add that to my list and check them out.

If you can think of anything else in the area to check out please let me know.

Thanks again!

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9. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

MainerOnTheGo:

Google Maps gave me three routes to take. The starting point was Gritty McDuff's in Freeport and ending at Crown Ridge Resort. The suggestions were.

1 ~ I-295 (78.4 miles)

2 ~ ME-35/Roosevelt Trail/US-302 (84.9 miles)

3 ~ ME-113/ME-5/Pequawket Trail (79.7 miles)

There's not much time difference with any of the routes listed above but prefer to be on a route that would be better if it's a snowy day. The 302 route looks favorable from what you indicated.

Thanks for the information the grocery stores and the restaurants as well. I'll be doing a lot of research today based on all the great information I received from everyone! :-)

Thanks again!

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10. Re: Questions ~ First time to North Conway

DennySausage:

Greatly appreciate the skiing tips. They all sound really good. The views from Wildcat must be breathtaking. I might put that on my list of a place to go. I like the easier trails since it's not so hard on my right leg. I had four injuries (one of them was skiing) over the years so I proceed with caution. I haven't skied in five years so I'll be a tab bit rusty for the first few hours.

Thanks for the additional restaurants. My husband is going to be one happy man with all the places in the area to try.

I'll check into Attitash to see if they have horseback riding there.

Thanks again for all of the information! I can't wait to go to North Conway... it's the best of everything.

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