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Ashuelot Rail Trail

The Ashuelot Rail-Trail, located near Keene, New Hampshire is a 23 mile, four season trail with something for everyone.
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Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Moderate
Length: 21.6 miles
Duration: Full day
Family Friendly

Overview :  If you enjoyed "The Bridges of Madison County," you'll love the covered bridges of the Ashuelot Rail Trail. The Monadnock... more »

Tips:  -The trail is packed dirt and cinder, so a mountain bike is recommended. At least a little suspension comes in handy, but is not... more »

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Points of Interest

1. trail starting spot/trailhead

I wish I would have had this map when I rode the Ashuelot. I must have asked a dozen residents, some who lived/or worked within a couple blocks of the trailhead, and not one person could tell me where it was located. I finally stumbled upon it after parking in the parking lot of the shopping center across the street.
Fortunately, the trail was... More

2. Keene State College

Sometimes dubbed "Clean and Straight College" by New Hampshirites, Keene State College is an outstanding school among New Hampshire educational institutions.

3. near Sawyers Crossing Covered Bridge

Head east on Sawyers Crossing Road to get to Sawyers Crossing Covered Bridge, one of many scenic bridges in Monadnock Region of New Hampshire. Sometimes called the very functional name, "enclosed bridges," other times the more enjoyable name, "kissing bridges," these relics from a bygone era were both functional and pleasant to view.

4. West Swanzey

Exit the trail onto Pine Street heading northwest to get to the Ashuelot River Campground.
At the time I toured this area, the trail was under construction, and it was necessary to ride on Homestead Avenue.
You will find interesting and spooky cemeteries in West Swanzey. I like to think of the As

5. West Swanzey covered bridge

Go west (young man) on Christian Hill Rd. to see the West Swanzey Covered Bridge.

6. Winchester

This is the home of two covered bridges and the Pickle Festival each September.

7. Ashuelot Covered Bridge

This covered bridge is closest to the rail trail and can be seen from the trail.

8. old railside mill w/ boxcars

This is one of the many industries that developed as a result of both the Ashuelot River and the now-defunct railroad.

9. Hinsdale, NH

Head a couple blocks north on Depot Street, over the Ashuelot River, to get to Main Street Hinsdale, New Hampshire.
Although there are lodging and dining options available in Hinsdale, it is important to plan ahead and get directions from the trail and find out days and hours of operation.