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How To Bike The Franconia Notch Recreation Path, NH

mother and child biking on White mountains bike trail

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It’s a family-friendly bike ride through the White Mountains in Franconia State Park, New Hampshire, they told us. It will be fun, they told us.

They did warn us that the Franconia Notch Recreation Path was mostly uphill for the 8.8 miles one way, which meant our girls were complaining their legs hurt for most of the ride.

But it did give us the family travel adventures we yearned for – it literally did kick our butts as far as elevation gain – but it was so worth it.

The thing that kept us cycling and digging deep for breath was the beauty surrounding us.

Golden canopied leaves guiding us across wooden bridges, past snow covered mountain peaks, bubbling creeks, and small waterfalls shaping basins out of the rocky earth – this is New England at it’s best.

If you’re thinking of biking the “not so family-friendly” Franconia Notch Bike Path, or perhaps would prefer to hike it instead if you have kids with you, then below is how to do it and what you can expect from the experience!

Franconia Notch Recreation Path: The Facts

Franconia Notch Recreation Path trail

The Franconia Notch Recreation Path, also known as Franconia Notch Parkway, is a multi-use trail that runs through Franconia Notch State Park, and extends for 8.7 miles.

It’s an out and back trail, which means you’d be close to cycling 20 miles if you do the entire path out and back.

The trail begins at Skookumchuck trailhead and finishes at Mt. Pemigewasset trailhead/Flume Gorge and Visitor Center.

It’s recommended to bike from the north end of the trail (Mount Pemigewasset trailhead/Flume Gorge Visitor Center) because then you get most of the elevation gain done at the beginning.

The trail is paved for most of the way, with pavement terrain mixed with wooden bridges and boardwalks.

As mentioned, the majority of the trail is uphill, but it wasn’t uphill the entire way, those hills were undulating so we knew what was going to happen on the way back.

There is a 20 mph (mile per hour) speed limit on the paved trail. There is no fee to ride the bike trail, however some attractions and bike rentals will cost a fee.

Park Facilities

You will find restrooms along the trail. They are located at Flume Gorge Visitor Center, Basin, Old Man in the Mountain Visitor Center, Lafayette Campground, and Cannon Mountain Tramway.

There are restaurants at Flume Gorge, Lafayette Campground, and…

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