Cold is Cool IF You're Prepared! A Guide to Winter Hiking & Recreation
Planning on enjoying the colder months by hiking, snowshoeing or just forest bathing in the fresh air? Under New Hampshire’s COVID-19 guidelines, we can all continue to enjoy the outdoors. Our 190 Forest Reservations are open year-round and you don't need to register in advance to use these protected spaces, except for Lost River Gorge & Boulder Caves (closed for the season) and Mount Monandock. However, winter access may be limited — visitors must follow roadside parking bans that ensure transportation routes are plowed, which means that if there are no plowed parking spaces, you may need to find somewhere else to explore. Below is a list of a "Winter's Dozen" Forest Society reservations across New Hampshire that have parking spaces plowed regularly during the winter.
Cold is cool IF you're prepared! Remember to:
- Hike safe and recreate responsibly (here is a guide to the 10 Essentials you need to pack, and see the bottom of this page for some universal guidelines);
- Follow "The Hiker Responsibility Code" that was developed and is endorsed by The White Mountain National Forest and New Hampshire Fish and Game.
- Check in advance to see whether parking lots are plowed and respect roadside winter parking bans;
- Hike in small family groups and continue to maintain six feet of distance between unrelated groups;
- Be prepared for winter conditions and early sunset times!
A Winter's Dozen Forest Reservations with Plowed Parking
- Hay Reservation, Newbury (The Fells parking area)
- The Rocks, Bethlehem (more information about The Rocks)
- Creek Farm, Portsmouth
- Merrimack River Outdoor Recreation & Conservation Area, Concord
- Morse Preserve, Alton
- Weeks Woods, Gilford
- Mount Monadnock, Jaffrey (Monadnock HQ only)
- Madame Sherri, Chesterfield
- Dame Forest, New Durham (4 parking spaces on each end of Longmarsh Road are plowed)
- Mount Major, Alton
- Monson Village, Hollis/Milford
- Bretzfelder Park, Bethlehem
Look for this graphic on the Forest Society's reservation guide pages that offer plowed parking. Post your adventures with #coldiscool to social media and we'll inspire others to opt outside!