As Winter break is rapidly approaching, along with New Hampshire’s winter season, many students will now have a pause to appreciate what this time of year has to offer. As there are students who both live in New Hampshire and will be staying on campus between semesters, the Granite state presents many opportunities to make the most of this winter.
One such place is one very familiar to the residents of New England College, Pat’s Peak. A particular bonus for students is that you can ski, snowboard, and tube for free there. It is a perfect place to experience these classic winter activities for no cost. For that reason, Pat’s Peak will always remain a staple for NEC over the Winter break.
There is also a Christmas tree farm in Henniker, which can offer another staple of New England winter traditions. Forster’s Christmas Tree Farm, located at 349 Mt. Hunger Rd, sells their trees at $12 per foot, and you can choose to either pick and cut a tree on your own, or pick it up prepared already. They also have a gift shop, where wreaths start at $12. It is near-by and family owned, so if there are any students planning on getting a Christmas tree this break, Forster’s might be the place to go. Langlais Family Tree Farm in Penacook, and Donaghey Christmas Tree Farm in Pembroke are also highly rated tree farms that are in the nearby area of New England College.
Charmingfare Farm in Candia, NH, offers fun winter activities. Although you can also buy pine trees here (online orders only), there is more to do here to get you into the winter spirit. One thing in particular is that you can ride a horse drawn wagon through their farm. Charmingfare has a wide reange of animals, ranging from more typical farm animals to reindeer, which of course, is extra seasonal. Once it begins to snow, this, perhaps, could be a very magical winter experience. If this sounds interesting, more information about Charmingfare Farm and their events and openings can be found on their website: https://www.visitthefarm.com.
Moving away from farms, for snowshoeing lovers, there are many great trails and recreational areas to snowshoe. Monadnock State Park is one such place, which is less than an hour drive from Henniker, NH. At Monadnock State Park, located around Mount Monadnock, there are three separate trailheads to choose from, which you can hike or snowshoe. The three trailheads are: Monadnock HQ, which is the most direct way to reach the peak of the mountain. It has direct access to both main trails: White Dot and White Cross. The three trailheads each offer different levels of difficulty and scenic opportunities. To discover more information about Monadnock State Park, or if you are interested in exploring other areas in the state to hike, snowshoe, or ski, the New Hampshire State Park website is both an in-depth and clear hub for many of the best trails in the area. Their website link is: https://www.nhstateparks.org. If you do not own snowshoes, Pat’s Peak offers rentals on them, if you would like to snowshoe closer to NEC.
For any students interested in ice fishing, there are many frequented beautiful lakes to do so. Two popular NH spots that are relatively close to Henniker are Lake Winnipesaukee, which is also the largest lake in the entire state. This is an approximately 80 minute drive. One spot that is a little bit closer, and not quite as large is Newfound Lake in Grafton County. This is about an hour long drive from Henniker. A couple interesting upsides to Newfound Lake is that it has a reputation for being one of the cleanest lakes in the nation, as well as one of the deepest in the state. While both Lake Winnipesaukee and Newfound Lake hold Lake Trout, Newfound Lake also has Rainbow Trout to catch. If this sounds interesting to you, plan on taking a trip to one of the many lakes in New Hampshire for a fun winter pass time.
New Hampshire is one of the best states in the entire country for experiencing the winter season. NH natives always know that there is a certain level of brutality in our winter season, as well, but it ultimately lends itself to a beautiful seasonal environment. During the winter break, if you will be staying in New Hampshire, there are endless opportunities to take advantage of, and this list is truly only scratching the surface. But no matter what you do with your winter break, it is most important to always be safe and have fun.