2011 Keystone Outback
2011 Keystone Outback
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Mollidgewock State Park is in a region known as the Great North Woods. Extending from upper-middle New Hampshire to its northern end, the North Woods is one of the few places in New England in which one can be truly remote. It’s said that moose outnumber humans in the North Woods. One of the more sparsely populated regions in the New England area (upper Maine being another), there are only about 30,000 residents living in a handful of small towns dotting northern New Hampshire. Escape cell phones, computers, and the busy suburban life by renting an RV and visiting Mollidgewock State Park.
The closest town is Errol, NH, which is about four miles to the north. Almost a literal one-street town, it has a general store with some food and camping supplies and a restaurant. For more variety in shopping and dining options, as well as a hospital with an emergency health care center, Berlin, is about 25 miles to the south.
Mollidgewock State Park is contained inside the Thirteen-Mile Woods Scenic Area, which follows the Androscoggin River. The 46-acre Mollidgewock State Park is nestled on the inside curve of the Androscoggin River. The calm waters of the Androscoggin River invite swimming, fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. Adventurers who arrive empty-handed can rent kayaks and canoes from the park office or utilize one of the local guide agencies. Anglers can expect to catch a wide range of fish, including fallfish, brook, brown, and rainbow trout, landlocked salmon, and smallmouth bass. In the late summers, head upstream and launch rubber tubes and rafts and spend an idle day drifting along the river.
Hikers and adventurers entering the woods of Mollidgewock State Park and the surrounding parks should keep an eye out for wildlife. Though they are typically shy, accidents do happen, and help is a long, long-distance away. In addition to moose, deer, bears, wolves, and many other small-game critters roam the woods. Overhead, bald eagles, ospreys, hawks, and other raptor birds soar in lazy circles, biding their time until an unwary rabbit pokes their head too far out of cover.
Umbagog Lake State Park butts up against Umbagog Lake’s shores. There are a few miles of hiking trails, though its main appeal is the easy access to the lake. Umbagog is considered one of the most pristine lakes in New Hampshire. With a surface area of over 7,800 acres, there’s plenty of room to stretch out. Even during the peak season, it’s rarely crowded. The lake is fairly shallow, averaging about 10 feet depth, and care must be taken when navigating the waters, particularly in a deep-keeled boat. The boat launch makes accessing the lake easy.
Far from a town with hotels, it makes far more sense to rent a travel trailer and RV camp at Mollidgewock State Park. The commute will be a few mere seconds; step out your front door into the sheer wilderness. Mollidgewock State Park has 42 RV sites. Though it’s a primitive campground, there are pit toilets and fire rings accompany each site. Several sites are waterfront, bordering the river.
Though the Umbagog Lake State Park RV campground is smaller, with only 27 sites, the campground does have electric and water hookups. There are restrooms with running water, also.
Alternatively, consider a privately-run campground like Clear Stream Campground. This campground offers 22 sites spread out over 22 acres, and most have electric and water hookups. The bathrooms also have showers, and there is a dump station should a guest require its services. However, this campground is open only between May and October.
On occasion, as ridiculous as it may sound, it’s necessary to emerge from the wilderness and interact with people. Hop into a rental motorhome and travel to the mountain towns of New Hampshire to meet local people who are typically outgoing and charming. Swap news about local events and learn the latest gossip. Colebrook has a historic farmhouse-turned-museum that depict what life was like in rural New Hampshire in the early 1800s. Considered a significant historic landmark in New Hampshire, it also has a sizeable collection of clothing, newspapers, and other documents, photographs, and artifacts on display.
Canaan is well known for its delicious steak houses, many of which also serves up game meat (seasonally available), and antique stores. The town is also the site of one of the first boarding schools in the state; it continues to operate today.
After spending a day exploring or fishing, sit outside an Airstream rental and look skyward. Far from the closest town, light pollution in this part of New Hampshire is minimal. The stars are clear and bright, and several astronomical bodies can be seen with the naked eye (though a telescope does help).
Book a motorhome in Coos County and find your RV camping retreat at Mollidgewock State Park.