Building the Cohos

By Charles J. Jordan
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The vast majority of The Cohos Trail is easily followed now. The trail is not formally open, however, nor fully signed and blazed. People usingthe system of their own volition, walking it in its current state, mustpossess good woods skills, excellent maps, a compass, and informationfrom the Cohos Trail Association.


These trailheads offer access to the various paths that together make up the Cohos Trail and to the many natural attractions the wilderness along the trail has to offer. Trailheads are listed in order from south to north.

Davis Path Trailhead: Route 302, south of Crawford Notch State Park.

Edmonds Path Trailhead: Mt. Clinton Rd. near Crawfords, not far from Crawford Notch.

Upper Falls: Parking area just east of the falls itself. Access to falls, Old Bridle Path, and old railbed.

Lower Falls: Parking on Old 302 just west of Cherry Mountain. Campground just off Route 302 & Cherry Mountain Road.

Zealand Campground: Access to the old Black Brook Trail to Cherry Mountain. (Mt. Martha, Owlshead).

Owlshead Parking Area: Route 115 in Jefferson. Watch for roadside plaque about the famous Cherry Mountain Slide.

Meadows Store: Pull off near old store building. Access to old railbed. Walk west one mile to Cherry Pond and sensational view of the Presidentials across the lake.

Starr King Trailhead: Just 100 feet east of Jefferson Village. Left off Route 2. Gravel drive uphill mile (stay left) to parking lot.

South Pond Rec. Area: Federal recreation area nine miles east of Groveton and three miles east of Stark village off Route 110. Fee charged. Access to South Pond, Devil's Hopyard, Rogers Ledge Cliffs, remote Kilburn and Unknown Ponds,the Horn, and Mt. Cabot from the north.

North Road: Take Bell Hill Road over Bell Hill Bridge just west of South Pond road entrance. Cross railroad tracks and turn left. Go mile. Park at chainlink fence. Walk 200 feet west to trailhead on left marked by orange bar-gate. This is the Bald Mountain Trail, restored by TCTA. Access to Bald Mountain Notch, Rowell Brook Link (TCTA) and Jimmy Cole Brook Rd (grassy).

Christine Lake: Parking lot at the east foot of Christine Lake. Travel on Route 110 to Stark Village. Cross Upper Ammonoosuc River over famous covered bridge. Turn right. Travel two miles to Percy Village. Watch for the sign to Christine Lake Road on left. Climb hill past small falls to parking area. Walk northwest on lake road 300 feet to trail leaving right. Follow for mile. Turn left at old Percy Peak sign, walk one mile level and uphill to junction with Jimmy Cole Brook Road. Cross the old grassy road and enter the newly restored Percy Summer Club Trail (TCTA) to Percy Peaks.

Percy Peaks Trail: Two miles east of Groveton on Route 110. Turn left at Emerson Rd. sign. Travel two miles to Nash Stream sign. Travel dirt road for three miles to Percy Peaks trailhead parking lot.

New Percy Loop Trail: Drive another mile to Long Mountain Brook, passing under the Nash Stream Road. Pull off to the left but do not block access to the camp. Trail is south of the brook a few feet and climbs uphill. Access to Percy Peaks on restored and new trail to Percy Peaks from the east.

Pond Brook Falls: At mile seven on Nash Stream Road just over the bridge over Pond Brook, park at small lot. Falls is in the woods 200 feet. Cross the road and head west to Nash Stream and the new snowmobile bridge and views. Access toWest Side Road trail and Sugarloaf Arm trail (on the CT).

Nash Stream Bridge: At mile nine on Nash Stream Road, there is a little pull-off at the bridge. Trail crosses rubble from old Nash Bog Dam disaster and heads north on the east side of the old bog.

Sugarloaf Trailhead: 200 feet beyond the Nash Stream Bridge at mile nine, the Sugarloaf Mountain Trailhead is on the left.

Gadwah Notch: Continue north on Nash Stream Road past camps where old bog used to be. Follow two miles past an orange gate, and continue another two miles to a second orange gate, where you must stop. This is the Headwaters Road (grassy). Leave vehicles and walk uphill into remote moose country.

Dixville Notch: Travel 16 miles east of Colebrook on Route 26. Park at State Wayside on Route 26 on east side of Dixville Notch. Access to waterfalls, Balsam Wilderness Ski Area summit, Dixville Peak, and Table Rock cliff. Also access to Sanquinary Mountain Trail, new Sanquinary Summit Trial, remote Mud Pond, Nathan Pond and Tumbledick Mountain Notch.

Coleman State Park: Twelve miles east of Colebrook on Route 26 on the way to Dixville Notch. Just east of Diamond Peaks motel, watch for Coleman State Park signs. Follow secondary roads and signs to the high elevation campground on Little Diamond Pond. This is The Cohos Trail terminus in 1999.

Beyond Coleman State Park the trail is a proposed route only. To see the fine big lake, big spruce, and fir country to the north where the trailwill eventually traverse, travel NH Route 3 to Pittsburg village andMurphy Dam, holding back 1,600 acre Lake Francis, with Lake Francis StateCampground on the northeastern-most shore. Continue north on Route 3to 2,000-acre First Connecticut Lake, 800-acre Second ConnecticutLake, Deer Mountain State Campground, and Moose Falls just to the north.Finally, move past remote Third Connecticut Lake to the U.S. Customsstation at the Canadian Border. Park here and take the isolated trail tosmall but beautiful Fourth Connecticut Lake, a cold water fen that isthe source of the Connecticut River.

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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