White Mountains

This weekend the Midwest and Northeast regions of the United States are experiencing an unusually early snowstorm. It reminded me to another place I visited during my New England road trip a couple of years ago, the White Mountains area in New Hampshire. The White Mountains area covers a significant part of the state of New Hampshire. It is another popular getaway destination in New England given its close proximity to Boston.

My primary reason for going through the White Mountains area during my drive from Vermont to Maine was to check out Mount Washington. Mount Washington is perhaps the most well-known mountain in the area because at close to 6,300 ft it is the highest mountain in the Northeast United States. It is also home for the highest wind gust ever recorded on the earth’s surface at 231 mph. Weather permitted, you can drive your car on the Mount Washington Auto Road that takes you from the base to near the summit of the mountain, a 7.6 mi drive that climbs 4,618 ft (at about 11% grade). I was driving my new Acura for this road trip, so I thought it would be interesting to see how my car would fare on this road.

Unfortunately when I arrived at the base of the mountain, I found out that the Auto Road was already closed for the season as they had a snowstorm few days earlier that made the road impassable. So after taking some photos from the base of the mountain, I continued on with a drive around the White Mountains on the Kancamagus Highway. This drive is often mentioned as one of the prettiest drives in the United States, especially in the autumn.

I drove through the White Mountains National Forest to enjoy the scenery, and stopped for a short hike to the Sabbaday Falls. There were not that many people around on the trail. It was slightly past the peak foliage time there given the higher altitude, but it was still pretty. The photo below is from the trail — beautiful maple leaves covering the ground.

Fall leaves in New Hampshire

New England

After finishing the coast-to-coast road trip from Santa Monica, CA, to Brooklyn, NY, I continued on up north to the New England area. Our coast-to-coast road trip took place in early October, and since I already took several days off from work, and I was already in New York City, I thought why not continuing the trip to visit New England during its peak fall foliage time. Prior to this trip, I had only visited Boston, MA, for business trip. I had never been to the other New England states. So this was a good opportunity to do it, and I decided to ‘sample’ all of the New England states in one extended weekend.

The route for the trip was quite an ambitious one, covering Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut in only four days. But since I was traveling alone (initially I invited my brother to come along, but he had some events to prepare for immediately after getting back to New York), my schedule was somewhat flexible and I could push it as far as I could personally take. The trip ended up to be a wonderful one as I got to experience many things unique to the region — fall foliage, maple syrup, lobster, history — capping the longest road trip I had ever undertaken, around 5,300 miles covering 22 states from California to Maine in 10 days.

The photo below was taken on the Park Loop Road in the Acadia National Park, ME. I had purchased the car about one month before the trip, and this trip was its first road trip outside the DC metro area. On a morning drive through the gorgeous drive, I noticed this stretch of the road that was lined with colorful trees, and the road had a nice S curve. It was early enough that there was no traffic for few minutes, so I ‘staged’ my car and took the photo.

Fall drive in Acadia