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Nestled amidst the White Mountains of New Hampshire, the Ames Brook Campground is a family-friendly RV park on the outskirts of Ashland. It’s a convenient base for exploring the picturesque Lakes Region and its protected areas, as well as discovering the cultural heritage of Grafton County.
RV camping at Ames Brook Campground is accessible to big rigs, with large wooded or sunny sites offering 30 and 50 amp electrics. Cable TV, water, and sewer hookups are also available, and there’s an on-site dump station and propane filling station for RVers to utilize. You can take advantage of the clean restrooms and (free) hot showers, not to mention the laundry room and well-stocked general store.
Recreational facilities at Ames Brook Campground include a swimming pool and children’s playground, as well as a basketball half-court and clay horseshoe pits. Complimentary Wi-Fi is provided throughout the property so you can stay in touch and fishing is permitted in the nearby brook.
Camp in an RV near Ashland and head to the Bald Ledge Scenic Vista Trailhead to embark on a scenic walk high above Winona Lake. The 1.3-mile track takes you through the glacial-carved terrain of the Sky Pond State Forest before opening out for sweeping views of the lake below. It’s particularly stunning during the fall when the surrounding forests ignite in rich hues of yellow, orange, and red, with the trail accessible to hikers of all experience levels.
A short drive northeast of the Ames Brook Campground is Squam Lake, which is connected to Little Squam Lake by a short channel. It was famously used as the filming destination for the 1981 movie On Golden Pond, and tour boats now access some of the lake’s most iconic filming locations and areas of natural significance. Squam Lake is also a popular fishery, with rainbow trout, landlocked salmon, and smallmouth and largemouth bass both for the taking. Common loons are known to nest on the lake shores while bald eagles and great blue herons can regularly be seen in the skies above.
While visiting the lake, don’t miss a visit to the Squam Lakes Natural Science Center, which showcases the ecology of the region. Aside from exhibits detailing the local flora and fauna, the center also features live animal exhibits and runs scenic cruises on the lake. If you prefer to explore on foot, there are various hiking trails that depart from the environmental center, and it runs natural science education programs that educate both young and old about the natural world.
Ames Brook Campground is a two-minute drive or 15-minute walk from the center of Ashland where you can pick up grocery supplies. There’s also a gas station here if you need to fill up your RV rental with gas and a good selection of eateries that include a pizzeria and a Mexican restaurant. Alternatively, you can make the 35-minute drive into Concord where you’ll find a more extensive variety of supermarkets, services, and fast-food restaurants.
Ashland is a quaint old mill town that’s worth an afternoon’s exploration, with a highlight being the Ashland Railroad Station Museum. This well-preserved example of a rural 19th-century railroad station was built in 1869 and is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Visit the small museum run by the Ashland Historical Society that details the history of the station, which was the first to be built on the Boston, Concord and Montreal Railroad.
Camping at the Ames Brook Campground is also a good base for visiting the adventure park in Chocorua, which lies around 50 minutes’ drive to the north. It’s home to thrilling zip lines and a ropes course, which are designed to challenge both young and old. Race your family and friends while being suspended 55 feet in the air and soak up the bird’s-eye views of the Mount Washington Valley.
Be sure to spend a day exploring Concord, which is home to the gold-domed State House and its Hall of Flags, as well as the Capitol Center for the Arts. You can get hands-on at the interactive McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center or hit the scenic trails of the Susan N. McLane Audubon Center. If you’re visiting during September or October, head to the Carter Hill Orchard that’s been growing apples since the mid-18th century and offers not only pick-your-own days but also cider tasting at the nearby cider mill.
Whether you want to cruise the waters of Squam Lake or discover the rich history of Ashland, book an RV in Grafton County and start planning your next vacation.