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Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

Dallas, Tx
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Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

I have never been to New England. After landing at Boston Logan Airport we are driving straight to North Conway for two nights. We will have one full day there to see some sights. We will be there mid-week the fourth week in October. I know I will not be able to do everything that has piqued my interest so I thought you could help me narrow it down to what is realistically manageable. I am interested in Mount Washington, Cathedral Ledge, Kancamagus Highway, the Flume in Franconia Notch State Park. The travelers are me and my two sons ages 9 and 15. We can be ready for action as soon as there is daylight and must be back at the hotel just before dark as I don't want to be driving at night. Believe me, I know we can't do everything listed. I need help prioritizing from this list and some help knowing what to see first. Any guidance you could give me would be greatly appreciated!

Hollis, New...
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1. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

You could do all of this, in some fashion, in one day (assuming you mean to ride to the summit of Mt. Washington in some motorized conveyance), though it would be a long day. But if you're staying in North Conway for two nights, do you not have the option of spreading your activities out a bit over two or three days? What time do you land in Boston, and where are you headed after North Conway? Maybe some of what you want to do and see can be combined with your travel to/from there.

Anyway, if it were up to me and I truly had only one day, I would plan to make a round trip through Franconia Notch, stopping to see the Flume and the Basin. Go by way of the Kancamagus and Route 302 (which will give you a close look at Mt. Washngton, and possibly enough time to take the Cog Railway to the top). I've never been up Cathedral Ledge, but I would think you could drive up there on the morning of your departure if you want.

Dallas, Tx
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2. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

Thank you so much! This is exactly the kind of direction that I was hoping to receive! Frankly, I am thrilled to imagine that we will be able to possibly accomplish all the things you mentioned!

Dallas, Tx
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627 posts
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3. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

I forgot to answer your questions. We land at Logan around noon. We have to collect luggage and pick up a rental car. Also, we will need to grab some lunch. Then we begin the three hour drive to North Conway. I believe it will be getting dark near the time of our arrival so "seeing" anything that night is probably out of the question.

As I mentioned earlier, we will have the full next day for exploring. The final day I must be on the road early in the morning. The sun should be up, though, so we might be able to take a peek at Cathedral Ledge on our way out.

Edited: 02 August 2012, 18:12
Georgia
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4. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

1st of all, Wpsaukee!!! Never been to Cathedral Ledge? High time for a field trip!!!

2nd, readalot, plenty of time for all. You will be taking that driving loop, Kanc/112, 302, 16, 3. Everything is along here or nearby.

If you take the cog RR or auto rd, that's going to consume a good 1/2 a day. 1/2 considering the time of the year and shorter days. IF the weather is cloudy that day, especially in the AM, forget going to the top. A ride up Rt 16 to view Tuckerman's Ravine might be an alternative.

The Flume (along w/the loop walk to The Pool) is a must see. Wouldn't take much more than 2 hours. A quick visit to the Basin may be in order. Very near the Flume and takes maybe 1/2 hr, longer if you walk a bit and BTW there is a path leaving from the Basin up to some really awesome cascades.

I'm not sure what the hrs are for Cathedral Ledge. But its a good candidate for an AM visit. It's a musts visit IMHO and its free. It's a 5min drive to the top. You can spend 1/2 hr and see it all, or you may choose to linger or have a picnic. Stop at the bottom and check for rock climbers!

Not sure how the crowds will be in N.Conway. Probably bad. Go to Googlemaps or Mapquest and search for:

Westside Road, Conway and

Passaconawway Rd, Conway oh, and

Bear Notch Road

Westside leads from Conway, to River Rd (into N. Conway) to 302 just west of Glen. Completely bypasses Rt 16 and many potential miles of stop and go traffic. Changes a 2 hour drive in traffic into a 20 minute drive!!!

Bear Notch leads from 302 in Bartlett (just west of Glen and N Conway) over to the Kanc. THis will also bypass that whole mess. DO note that the Bear Notch Rd lets you onto the Kanc, just west of the "Rocky Gorge" and "Lower Falls" which are 2 major stops on the Kanc.

FInally, Passaconaway Rd, leaves from Westside Road over to the Kanc. Comes out at the Covered Bridge (you go over the bridge), just east of Lower Falls.

Anyway, these roads are real time savers and very nice drives.

Dallas, Tx
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5. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

Wow, Kevin_from_America! Thanks for taking the time to help me! You have given me very thorough directions and I plan on doing things just as you have suggested!

Dallas, Tx
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6. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

Kevin_from_America,

I have finally taken the time to plug in Westside Road, Conway and Passaconawway Rd, Conway and Bear Notch Road that you mentioned as alternative routes. Just looking at the map and using google maps times...these roads seem to take me a bit out of my way. You mentioned that you thought traffic might be pretty heavy that time of year. We will be there Wednesday, Oct. 24. Do you still think crowds will be an issue? I had thought that we were well past peak foliage and also we will not be there on a weekend. Do you still think we should take the alternative roads you mentioned? Thanks!

Nashville, TN
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7. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

I too will have one full day in the area on Tue Oct 16th. In my planning, I did come across a few things that would be closed/closing around the time we will be there:

Flume Gorge closes Oct 21:

nhstateparks.org/explore/…flume-gorge.aspx

I was disappointed that the Cannon Mtn. tram was closing just before we arrive too.

Dallas, Tx
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8. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

mrs.popeye,

Thanks so much for posting this! I am very disappointed, but would have been more so if you had not warned me! Like you, having such a short amount of time, a mistake like that could cost a huge part of our only day!

Nashville, TN
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9. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

I'm glad that was helpful. Better to know now than later. I'm sure you will have a fabulous time anyway.

Dallas, Tx
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10. Re: Can you help me plan one full day in late fall?

Any idea, since the Flume is closed, if I would still be able to see the Basin? Would it be worth it without seeing the Flume?