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  1. #1
    Registered User Debbie's Avatar
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    Default Crawford Notch Campground

    Does anybody have experience with the Crawford Notch Campground/General Store? I'm thinking of stopping there on my hike in the Whites this summer.

  2. #2
    PCT, Sheltowee, Pinhoti, LT , BMT, AT, SHT, CDT 560 miles 10-K's Avatar
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    I stayed there last year and it was ok..... I was able to get hitch a ride there but wound up having to walk back to the trail and if I remember right it's a pretty good distance.

    I sent a maildrop there and decided to stay on the spur of the moment. It's pretty low key and quiet and the little store closes early.

    I don't believe they accept mail drops any longer and I got the distinct feeling that they were going for a family atmosphere rather than a hiker-type environment.

  3. #3
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    stayed there last year as well.OK spot, limited resupply, it's pretty far from the trail as 10K said, 4 of us split a little cabin there. A huge nuisance bear was hanging around at the time. some older guidebooks suggest there is a hostel there and the owners said they have tried to get that corrected fore several years. No hostel but a nice fire site and beer/ice cream in the convenience store. one really great spot south of there was the Ethan Pond shelter. really great caretaker there last year, wish i could remember his name.

  4. #4

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    Stayed there in 2008. We rented a spot and pitched our tent. The only problem we had is that our site where the tent was pitched flooded during a late afternoon heavy downpour. Some of the sites are not graded well at all and the soil is not conducive for draining. We were not the only ones with the issue. The owners were not very responsive to any of the campers who got flooded. We ended up upgrading to a yurt and loved it. I'd recommend a yurt if you're going to stay there.

  5. #5
    Registered User DLANOIE's Avatar
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    Thumbs down

    I stopped by there during my 2006 SOBO. I wanted to do some laundry, get a quick bite and head back out. I believe it was three miles from the trail, but not a terrible road walk. As I was doing my laundry and eating a meager sandwich I purchased at the "general store", the owner came out and started grilling me about where I came from. He thought I had snuck in in the middle of the night and camped out without paying. I tried to explain to him that I had camped out on the AT and was just doing some laundry. There were some sectioners I was talking to there who were going back to the AT and getting a ride from the owner. So I asked the owner if I could hop in the back of his pickup and get a ride the three miles to the trail. At first he flat out said no. He was very rude to me when all I was doing was paying him to do a wash and I bought a crappy sanwich from him as well. He told me it would cost ten bucks if I wanted the ride. Since it was raining buckets I just paid the guy and got a ride. I will not be going back to that campground any time soon.
    Just my experience.........
    skinny d

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by DLANOIE View Post
    I stopped by there during my 2006 SOBO. .... the owner came out and started grilling me .... He was very rude to me when all I was doing was paying him to do a wash and I bought a crappy sanwich from him as well. He told me it would cost ten bucks if I wanted the ride. Since it was raining buckets I just paid the guy and got a ride. I will not be going back to that campground any time soon.
    Just my experience.........
    I think the owners/managers have changed since 2006. Not that we had a totally wonderful experience with the new owners in 2008, but perhaps they were still learning. Here's our experience:
    http://trailjournals.com/entry.cfm?id=321865

  7. #7
    PCT, Sheltowee, Pinhoti, LT , BMT, AT, SHT, CDT 560 miles 10-K's Avatar
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    The vibe I got from talking to the lady running the store was that they were trying to create a family oriented campground and hikers didn't fit in with that vision.

    I'd be willing to bet they had some unpleasant experiences with hikers in the past - just a guess.

  8. #8
    Registered User BigHodag's Avatar
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    Default re: Crawford Notch Campground

    Might consider a resupply at Notch Express at Exit 33 about a mile or so south of the AT. I stopped there during a recent business trip to the Whites. They say they get a number of AT hikers each summer. Review is on my section hiking blog:

    http://at-trail.blogspot.com/2011/04...-store-nh.html

    Chet's hostel is about another mile beyond to the south. Chet may have a laundry.

    Lincoln where Notch Express and Chet's is located offers several motels and a full grocery store. I didn't go by the grocer so I can't offer much intel.
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  9. #9
    Registered User Debbie's Avatar
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    Thanks for the quick responses, everybody; I think I have a pretty good picture now.

  10. #10
    Registered User johnnybgood's Avatar
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    I recall stopping at a general store in Crawford Notch in 2009 for an ice cream cone plus a drink and noticed a sign that read " under new management " .
    I'm not sure , but this might be the same place. Was there a pond across the road with a hiking trail ?
    Getting lost is a way to find yourself.

  11. #11

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    stealth camped at the road/trail crossing and hitched to the right(nobo)to bartlet or something(town before north conway) good store easy hitch both ways 10 miles maybe

  12. #12

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    small general store if its still open, great deli sandwiches too, hauled one in my pack just past mizpuh hut, then it disappeared

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by 10-K View Post
    The vibe I got from talking to the lady running the store was that they were trying to create a family oriented campground and hikers didn't fit in with that vision.

    I'd be willing to bet they had some unpleasant experiences with hikers in the past - just a guess.
    Hikers are dirty and they stink!
    Site drainage isn't a problem for big RV rigs.
    I breezed through there on the way somewhere else a few years ago and was treated pretty much as if I wasn't there. I bought a few treats and was on my way. Better to hitch west (8.4 mi. according to '08 Companion) into town and stay at Above the Notch Motor lodge with groceries nearby. I've driven through there a number of times. The AMC's mega lodge, Highland Center, is on the way too, if you want mountain luxury accomodations.
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

  14. #14
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    Route 302 is a major highway through the area and 99.9% of the traffic will bring you to Bartlett NH (east on 302) or Twin Mountain to the west. I recomend Bartlett as there is a much better grocery store to resupply at (twin mtn unfortunately has several small campground stores/variety stores with limited selection). There are plenty of places in the woods where the AT crosses the road, plus the Dry River state campground is just down the road. There is a lot to be said to hitch into town, resupply and hitch back.

    One thing to note is that spots to stealth in Bartlett are pretty slim and there is development along muhc of the highway until the Attitash Ski area, so its best not to plan to stay overnight. The traffic does slow down on Rt 302 in the evening so its best to get in and out during the daylight.

  15. #15
    Registered User weary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinker View Post
    The AMC's mega lodge, Highland Center, is on the way too, if you want mountain luxury accomodations.
    Shapleigh Bunk House at the Highland Center is an unappreciated gem in the wake of mainstream outdoors. The price is less than half the cheapest accomodation at the Highland Lodge. Better yet, few know it's there, so often you have the place to yourself.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    Route 302 is a major highway through the area and 99.9% of the traffic will bring you to Bartlett NH (east on 302) or Twin Mountain to the west. I recomend Bartlett as there is a much better grocery store to resupply at (twin mtn unfortunately has several small campground stores/variety stores with limited selection). There are plenty of places in the woods where the AT crosses the road, plus the Dry River state campground is just down the road. There is a lot to be said to hitch into town, resupply and hitch back.

    One thing to note is that spots to stealth in Bartlett are pretty slim and there is development along muhc of the highway until the Attitash Ski area, so its best not to plan to stay overnight. The traffic does slow down on Rt 302 in the evening so its best to get in and out during the daylight.
    never stayed in bartlett, good advice to get in and out, i stealthed right next to the trail by the bridge crossing myself. great grub at the deli. good to see its still open hitch was easy both years i tried
    Last edited by CrumbSnatcher; 06-20-2011 at 22:44. Reason: spel-lun

  17. #17
    Registered User DLANOIE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CrumbSnatcher View Post
    never stayed in bartlett, good advice to get in and out, i stealthed right next to the trail by the bridge crossing myself. great grud at the deli. good to see its still open hitch was easy both years i tried
    .

    I stealthed right there as well. Set my hamock up right along the edge of the water. I got a nerve racking visit from a moose that night. It was playing in the water right next to my shelter. I got there a little early and was nervous someone may stumble upon my site but never happend(except the moose)
    skinny d

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    Stayed there prior to starting a section across the Presidentials about 5 years ago. We had a bear visit in the middle of the night - it went after our empty packs and shredded some garbage bags. Our food was hung and was unscathed.

    I didn't think the walk to the trailhead was too bad. Other than the bear issue, it was a decent campground.

  19. #19
    Registered User Debbie's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the good suggestions.

    Weary, that Shapleigh Bunkhouse sounds like it might be a good option. I probably will have all my food and supplies before I start out; I might be able to leave a box/travel bag there with my extra supplies if they accept maildrops and I spend a couple of nights with them. (I'll contact them).

    I'm doing the section from rt 16/Gulf Trail parking south lot to Franconia Notch, so having a place halfway in between to stop or leave supplies sounds good.

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