Self-Driven Moose Tours In New Hampshire

  • THE BEST MOOSE WATCHING IN NEW HAMPSHIRE!

    Welcome to the Moose Path! The Moose Path is a nationally designated scenic byway that runs 98 miles from Berlin NH to the famous Moose Alley in Pittsburg NH and offers the best opportunity for moose watching in NH. Many folks have asked for a moose tour in the white mountains and other moose watching spots in New Hampshire, so we decided to give em’ what they want.

     

    DOWNLOAD “ALL ABOUT MOOSE” AUDIO TOUR HERE

     

    GET NH MOOSE PATH TOUR DIRECTIONS
    ON YOUR MOBILE DEVICE

     

    Just click on the google maps link below and the Moose Path route will appear automatically on your google maps navigation service. Add your location as the starting point and you’re off! Easy Peasy! Also, just click on the map for a larger printable version!

    GOOGLE MAPS LINK

The NH Moose Path is a historic moose migratory path.

 

The Moose Path is a historic moose migratory path between their higher wintering grounds and their lower summering grounds that follows the mighty Androscoggin River north from Berlin through Pontook Dam Reservoir and the famous 13 Mile Woods (Nice spots to see Moose) to Errol NH. 

While you’re in Errol, a great quick detour is The Lake Umbagog National Wildlife Refuge which is a fantastic place to see Northern New Hampshire’s Moose, Loons, Bald Eagles and the region’s dark night skies.

From Errol the Moose Path turns west through the visually stunning Dixville Notch, NH’s northernmost notch, and onto Colebrook NH.

Colebrook is a great place to grab lunch. Check out our “Where to Eat” page for some yummy suggestions.

Then after a pit stop it is time to head north past the crystal clear Connecticut Lakes Region and onto Moose Alley!

New Hampshire’s Moose Alley is a 13 mile stretch of undeveloped wilderness between Pittsburgh and the Canadian Border which includes Second and Third Connecticut Lakes.. Moose Alley, as the name suggests, is your best bet to see Moose in New Hampshire!

 

  • DRIVER SAFETY

    When looking for moose (especially in twilight), the driver of the vehicle should always be looking for moose in the road ahead and passengers  should be scanning the sides of the road. Moose are most often seen crossing the road infront and because of this, unfortunately, there are hundreds of collisions between car and moose each summer. So, visitors are advised to keep their vehicle speed down and eyes wide open.

    When you spot one, even though moose aren’t usually aggressive, they can be when they feel threatened. So, it’s recommended to stay in the comfort and safety of your car when viewing. Have fun!

  • OTHER AUDIO TOURS COMING SOON

    Umbagog Lake National Wildlife Refuge

    Geology of Northern NH

    Northern NH : A Complete History

All About Moose

Moose (Alces alces) are one of the most iconic and largest mammals found in New England. Moose are also the largest member of the deer family standing over six feet at the shoulder. Then you add on a couple feet for the head and 6 foot wide antlers…needless to say that the big ones….are pretty big. The largest recorded was over 1500 pounds.

Moose are a significant part of the state’s natural heritage and play an important role in the ecosystem. Moose are predominantly found in the northern parts of New Hampshire, thriving in wetlands and forested areas with a mix of young and mature forests. There is no better place to watch moose in the White Mountains or Northern NH, than the Moose Path. These areas provide moose with ample food options and a cooler environment to escape the summer heat. The best time for moose viewing is the twilight of early morning and late evening since Moose prefer to move around in the cooler temperatures of nighttime.

Moose Behavior and Diet

Moose are generally solitary animals, except during the breeding season and when females are caring for their young. Moose are herbivores, feeding on a variety of vegetation. In the summer, they consume aquatic plants, grasses, and leaves of deciduous trees and shrubs. In winter, their diet shifts to twigs and bark of woody plants, primarily willow, aspen, and birch.

The rut, or breeding season, occurs in late September to early October. Bulls compete for access to cows and the Cows give birth to one or two calves in late May to early June. Calves stay with their mothers for about a year before heading out on their own.

New Hampshire Moose Population Status
The moose population in New Hampshire has seen fluctuations over the years. Their populations were severely reduced by hunting and habitat loss in the 19th century but rebounded in the 20th century due to conservation efforts and habitat regrowth. As of recent estimates, New Hampshire’s moose population is approximately 4,000 individuals. Population densities are highest in the more northern parts of the state. The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department conducts annual surveys and research to monitor moose population dynamics, health, and habitat use.

Moose Challenges and Threats
Moose in New Hampshire face several significant challenges: The winter tick (Dermacentor albipictus) is a major threat, causing severe infestations that can lead to weight loss, anemia, and even death. Brainworm (Parelaphostrongylus tenuis), a parasite carried by white-tailed deer, can also be fatal to moose. Development and land use changes can fragment moose habitat, reducing available forage and increasing human-wildlife conflicts. Changing climate conditions can affect moose habitat and food availability. Warmer winters may exacerbate winter tick infestations. Moose-vehicle collisions are a safety concern, particularly in areas with high moose densities and busy roads.

Moose are a vital part of Northern New Hampshire’s natural landscape. Continued conservation efforts, informed by research and monitoring, are essential to ensure the long-term health and sustainability of moose populations in the state. Addressing challenges such as parasites, habitat fragmentation, and climate change will be crucial in these efforts.

Northern New Hampshire – A Brief History

Known by many names (The Great North Woods, North of the Notches, The North Country, The Northern Forest)  Northern New Hampshire is a captivating area known for its rich history, prestine forests and lakes, large mountains, and stunning natural beauty. The region encompasses Coös County as well as northern Grafton County and includes notable areas such as the Connecticut Lakes Region, the Androscoggin River Valley, and the large Northern White Mountains.

Early Inhabitants

Long before European settlers arrived, Northern NH was inhabited by indigenous peoples. The Abenaki tribes, part of the Algonquin-speaking peoples, were the primary inhabitants of the region. They lived a semi-nomadic lifestyle, relying on hunting, fishing, and gathering for sustenance. The bountiful forests and abundant waterways provided ample resources for these communities.

European Exploration and Settlement

The first Europeans to explore the Great North Woods were likely French trappers and traders in the 17th century. They established trade routes and interacted with the native Abenaki, exchanging goods such as furs, tools, and weapons. The Treaty of Paris in 1763, which ended the French and Indian War, marked the beginning of British control over the region.

Logging and Timber Industry

The 19th century brought significant changes to Northern NH as the timber industry began to flourish. The vast forests of pine, spruce, and hemlock attracted loggers and entrepreneurs. By the mid-1800s, logging camps and sawmills were established throughout the region. The Androscoggin River played a crucial role in transporting logs to mills and markets downstream.

The logging industry reached its peak in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Towns such as Berlin, Gorham, and Groveton became bustling centers of logging activity. However, the intense logging practices led to deforestation and environmental degradation, prompting the need for conservation efforts.

Conservation and Recreation

The early 20th century saw a shift towards conservation and sustainable management of the Great North Woods. The Weeks Act of 1911, named after New Hampshire Congressman John Wingate Weeks, was a pivotal piece of legislation that allowed the federal government to purchase and protect forest lands. This act led to the establishment of the White Mountain National Forest, which includes parts of the Great North Woods.

In addition to conservation, the region became a popular destination for outdoor recreation. Hunting, fishing, hiking, and camping drew visitors seeking to experience the natural beauty of the area. The creation of state parks and protected areas helped preserve the region’s landscapes for future generations.

Modern Developments

Today, Northern NH  remains a vital part of New Hampshire’s cultural and natural heritage. While the timber industry has declined, sustainable forestry practices continue to play a role in the local economy. Tourism has become a significant economic driver, with visitors flocking to the area for its recreational opportunities and scenic beauty.

The region is also home to a diverse array of wildlife, including moose, black bears, and various bird species. Efforts to protect and preserve the natural habitats continue to be a priority for both local communities and conservation organizations.

The history of the Great North Woods region of New Hampshire is a testament to the resilience and adaptability of its inhabitants, both human and animal. From its early days as a home to indigenous tribes, through the boom and bust of the logging industry, to its current status as a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, the region has undergone significant transformations. Today, it stands as a symbol of natural beauty, cultural heritage, and environmental stewardship.