Maine/NH Kid friendly overnights?

11:14 p.m. on July 19, 2012 (EDT)
63 reviewer rep
190 forum posts

I am ready to start taking my princess (almost 7!) out on overnight hikes, and was looking for something in the Maine/NH area that wouldn't be too difficult.  I would also like to find somewhere that's not too crowded as it's tourist season here, and many easy overnight trails might be "loaded" with the 30 rack crowd.  We live in the Portland ME area and would not mind driving as much as 3 hours.  She would just prefer an easy hike in, a fishing spot, and some peace and quiet.  I am an experienced backpacker, and know of a few hikes that are easy, but any advice would be greatly appreciated.    

Hail and Health


3:29 a.m. on July 20, 2012 (EDT)
2,829 reviewer rep
921 forum posts

Given your location, the Evans Notch area on the ME/NH border comes to mind. Since it's off to the side it's often not as busy as the main ranges, but Baldpate is a great day hike with beautiful views. 

6:39 p.m. on July 20, 2012 (EDT)
136 reviewer rep
623 forum posts


I also live in the Portland area, and I"m sure as an experienced hiker you know tons of hikes just a short 1.5 - 2 hour drive to the Whites in New Hampshire.

I would be able to talk about tons of areas in the Whites as well that would be great day hikes and overnights.

I frequently go with family and friends as well, and like you, enjoy quiet, respectful areas that don't have the 30 rack crowd. Send me a PM if you'd like to discuss some options further or hike together sometime. I'm a therapist who currently works with children at a local school district in portland.

4:32 p.m. on July 21, 2012 (EDT)
5,546 reviewer rep
2,024 forum posts

the department of agriculture has a nice website with a list of possible options.

i like the pemigewasset wilderness area for hikes a little less challenging and popular than the northern presidentials.  you might also think about the Caribou Mountain area.  

11:07 p.m. on July 21, 2012 (EDT)
63 reviewer rep
190 forum posts

Yeah I know the Caribou-Speckled Mtn. wilderness area really well.  That might be where we'll end up going as is seems to stay pretty quiet up there.  The fishin stinks, but at least I can introduce her to some vertical without stressing about making it to a certain area in order to camp.  

I also thought about Gentian Pond area on the AT.  It has a nice shelter, a pond with fish, easy access in terms of difficulty.  I just worry about the crowds.  

Oh and maybe Old Speck, hay I think they still stock the pond up there... 

8:32 a.m. on July 22, 2012 (EDT)
136 reviewer rep
623 forum posts

pemi wilderness is great but does also have some good camping and overnights. The issue is that this time of year all the "legal" camp sites are likely to be packed.

I'm doing the loop in a couple of weeks. 13 mountains, 36.6 miles, 1.5 days. Should be fun :-)

1:51 p.m. on July 23, 2012 (EDT)
625 reviewer rep
1,178 forum posts

My folks took me to Bradbury Mountain State park in Pownal before we went on any "real" backpacking trips.  It's close to Portland, and you can do a 5-mile loop and car camp right there.

For overnights, I like Tumbledown Mountain near Strong.  It's got an exciting climb, a lake at the top surrounded by blueberries and cranberries and isn't too crowded.

Hiking north or south on the AT from Monson would also be nice. It's 3.5 hrs away, but the terrain is mild and it won't be as crowded as the AT near Baxter or Rangeley.

5:47 p.m. on July 23, 2012 (EDT)
5,546 reviewer rep
2,024 forum posts

last time i was in the pemi wilderness was on snowshoes....have fun!



April 26, 2018
Quick Reply

Please sign in to reply

More Topics
This forum: Older: How to cross a river safely Newer: Good pack weight before food, water and clothing?
All forums: Older: WTB - cookset Newer: Win Sierra Designs Tent and MSR Carbon Stakes