- 26.5 miles (42 km)
- One hour to drive this Byway.
- There are no fees for driving the Byway; however, unattended cars in the National Forest need a recreation pass.
Adorned in color, the mountains and waterways of the Kancamagus Scenic Highway are world renown for their autumn splendor. Wrangling past old hunting grounds of Indian tribes, trading posts of early settlements, and museums housing treasured artifacts, the road climbs to a height of 3,000 ft. to Mt. Kancamagus with countless places to pause and reflect.
The Kancamagus Scenic Byway runs for 34 miles along SR-112 from Lincoln to Conway.
Skiing the slopes of Attitash Bear Peak. Hiking the Appalachian Trail. Driving to the "top of New England". Photographing the magnificent Flume Gorge. Swimming at Echo Lake. And, studying the flora at White Mountain National Forest. These are just samples of the pleasures and excitement in store.
Other activities include horseback riding, bird watching, riding the aerial tramway, rock climbing, and golfing.
Points of Interest
Points of Interest Along The Way
Appalachian National Scenic Trail (NH)
Stretching over 2,000 miles from Georgia to Maine, the Appalachian Trail is one of the ultimate hiking opportunities and destinations in the United States. The AT's nearly 80-mile journey through Georgia takes it across the Russell-Brasstown Scenic Bywayat Hogpen Gap (SR 348) and Unicoi Gap (SR 17/75). This famous trail travels through dense forests while it runs atop numerous mountain ridges, often providing beautiful vistas. Parking and interpretive facilities are provided at both Byway crossings.
Access the Appalachian Trail from NH 25.
Attitash Bear Peak (NH)
Attitash Bear Peak, NH's largest ski resort, is two mountains of fantastic snow skiing. There is plenty to do at the resort in the off-season: guided horseback rides, golfing, children's swimming pools, and a host of events and activities.
Leaving Lincoln, NH, take the Byway northeast for 22.9 miles. Turn left onto Bear Notch Road and follow for 8.8 miles. (The road name changes to Albany Road.) Turn right US-302 (Crawford Notch Road) and follow for 2.7 miles until you arrive at the resort.
Clark's Trading Post (NH)
One of the White Mountains' most outstanding attractions, the Clark family has personally entertained their summer visitors for 70 years.
Features include a fire station, steam locomotive, trained North American black bears, and a museum.
Clark`s Trading Post is on Route 3 just north of North Woodstock at the western end of the Kancamagus Highway.
Conway Scenic Railroad (NH)
Experience bygone days in these powerful locomotives and their open (or enclosed) vintage coaches. Train rides vary in duration: the "Valley Train" goes through Conway and Bartlett, while the "Notch Trail" goes to Crawford Notch and the Fabyan Station.
From the easternmost point on the Byway, turn left onto SR-113 (SR-16) and drive for 0.8 miles. Turn left onto SR-16 (White Mountain Hwy) and follow for 2.8 miles. Keep straight onto US-302 (SR-16) and follow for 2.5 miles. Turn left onto Norcross Circle and drive for 0.1 miles until you arrive at the railroad.
Franconia Notch State Park (NH)
Franconia Notch State Park is located high in the White Mountain National Forest (Franconia Notch is a mountain pass.) This State Park is crammed with fun things to see and do.
For one, you can saunter along the 800-foot long Flume Gorge(and under its sheer 90-foot walls) on wide gravel paths and wooden walkways. Along this two-mile trail, you will also walk on bridges,past waterfalls, scenic pools, and glacial boulders. The Flume Gorge also has a visitor center.
The Park is also the home of the famous Old Man of the Mountain (a geological formation)--the "Great Stone Face" immortalized by Nathaniel Hawthorne and Daniel Webster.
You should also try to do at least a few of these things while at the Park: ride the aerial tramway at Cannon Mountain, visit the New England Ski Museum, swim at Echo Lake, fish at Profile Lake,ride your bike on a trail, rock climb, watch for hawks and falcons,or hike on the Appalachian Trail.
From the westernmost part of the Byway, go southwest for 0.1 miles. Take the ramp on your right onto I-93 (Senator Styles Bridges Hwy) and drive for 9.6 miles. At Exit 34B, turn right onto the ramp to Cannon Mountain Tramway/Old Man Viewing. After 0.1 miles, turn left and drive for 0.2 miles. Turn left and drive for 0.1 miles, then turn left again and follow for 2.3 miles until you arrive at the park.
Loon's scenic summit skyride whisks you to the summit to glacial caves, nature programs, the Mountain Man, summit playground, shopping and dinning.
At the base, enjoy mountain biking, horseback riding, in-line skating, archery, festivals, and concerts.
Lost River Gorge and Boulder Caves (NH)
Lost River Gorge was created long before recorded history, when glaciers ground their way across North America, shaping the land. Today you can follow Lost River as it appears and disappears through the narrow steep-walled gorge, the tumbled granite, crevasses caverns and falls. As you explore these incredible formations, you'll learn about natural history, ecology, and plant life.
From the westernmost point on the Byway, go southwest for 0.8 miles. Keep straight onto SR-112 (Lost River Rd) for 5.9 miles until you reach Lost River.
Mt. Washington Auto Road (NH)
This eight-mile road takes you to the northeast's highest peak,Mt. Washington--"the top of New England." This road, an unprecedented engineering achievement, is especially enjoyable because of its (literally) mile-high views of the Presidential Range and the White Mountain National Forest.
The road was built in 1861 and has remained virtually unchanged.It takes very little imagination, then, to conjure up images of horse-drawn wagons scaling this route.
More history can be found at the Historic Summit Stage Office,which was built in 1878. The Office sells souvenirs and hiking supplies, and features rare Mt. Washington memorabilia. A note of interest: the world's highest winds (231 mph) were recorded at this building in 1934.
There are plenty of ways to enjoy this route. One is to hike up it; and then if you're too tired, you can get a stage ride down (sign up at the sign up for a Historic Summit Stage Office.)Another option is a guided tour in a comfortable GMC van.
You can also certainly drive your own car so you can linger for as long as you want at any view. If you drive your own vehicle, you can rent a cassette audio tour. This tape shares classic tales of the road's history; it also points out interesting geological and geographical features.
There are also plenty of other things to do and see at the base of the mountain. The Sherman Adams State Park Building is there, as well as the Mount Washington Observatory Museum, and the fully-restored Tip Top House (ca. 1853).
From the easternmost point on the Byway, drive 1 mile to Conway. Turn left onto SR-113, and follow until you come to the junction with SR-16 (White Mountain Hwy). Drive for 2.8 miles. Keep straight onto US-302 (SR-16) for 8.1 miles, then turn right onto SR-16 (White Mountain Hwy) and follow for 14.5 miles. Turn left onto Mt Washington Auto Road.
Rocky Gorge Scenic Area (NH)
Over time the Swift River wore this narrow gorge through solid rock.
Between Bear Notch and Lower Falls
Story Land (NH)
Story Land, located in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, serves as a popular destination for family entertainment. The original park opened in 1954 and still exists within the park today; it is just a tiny portion of what Story Land has become. The entire park aims not to overwhelm children, but to create a comfortable fantasy world of fun and games. With over 30 acres of fun, there is plenty to explore and entertain at Story Land.
At the easternmost point on the Byway, drive for 1 mile, then turn left onto SR-113. After 0.1 mile, turn right onto SR-16 and follow for 2.8 miles. Keep straight onto US-302 for 8.1 miles. Turn right onto SR-16 and follow for 0.7 miles until you arrive at Story Land.