12 Best New Hampshire NH Snowmobile Trails

Yamaha Snowmobile Trail Sunset

With 7,000 miles of maintained trails, New Hampshire is an excellent place to snowmobile. The conversion of the old railroad systems into recreational areas and the beautiful landscape has led to a massive surge of winter sports and riding opportunities. So where can you go snowmobiling in New Hampshire?

Traverse the Pittsburg Snowmobile Trail System and experience nearly 200 miles of groomed trail. Follow experienced guides towards secret spots and amazing winter scenes away from the crowd. You can even catch the Sled Championships if you’re lucky. Enjoy shopping, hotels, cabins, and restaurants.

Here are the best snowmobile trails in New Hampshire:

  1. Pittsburg Snowmobile Trail System
  2. Concord Snowmobile Trails
  3. Rockingham Recreational Rail Trail
  4. Ammonoosuc Recreational Rail Trail
  5. Cotton Valley Rail Trail
  6. Barrington Snowmobile Trails
  7. Northern Recreational Rail Trail
  8. Ashuelot Recreational Rail Trail
  9. Cheshire Recreational Rail Trail
  10. Conway Branch Recreational Rail Trail
  11. Bear Notch Snowmobile Trail System
  12. Moultonboro Snowmobile Trails

New Hampshire offers other fun activities also, such as zip-lining and pond skating. So no matter your preference, these trail systems in New Hampshire will get you inspired.

12 Best NH Snowmobile Trails

1. Pittsburg Snowmobile Trail System

Pittsburg Snowmobile Trail System is one of the top snowmobile trails in New Hampshire. Take advantage of both state and club trails with other snowmobilers. Ride along the Nash stream in the Nash Stream State Park. You can also fish, hunt, or hike Stub Hill, the highest summit in the area. Check out the old hotel in Cold Spring Road. Be sure to check New England trail conditions for a hassle-free adventure. SnowTrax TV does justice in capturing what’s in store for you in Pittsburg, New Hampshire in this video:

2. Concord Snowmobile Trails

This seasonal playground is one of the most popular trail systems in New Hampshire due to its speed limits. Turtletown Pond, in particular, is the only place in the state where snowmobilers can go as fast as 55 mph without being ticketed. The best snowmobiling spots in this area are Warner, Andover, Henniker, and Pawtuckaway State Park. The route from Concord to Lincoln Rail Corridor (Exit 18/Canterbury to Exit 32/Lincoln) is a favorite of enthusiasts. Expect exposed rails in this section.

3. Rockingham Recreational Rail Trail

Collectively, the Portsmouth and Fremont branches of this multi-use trail in southern NH is 43 miles. The Fremont trail is the more popular branch that begins at Depot Road in Windham, and passes through beautiful everglades and tranquil forests. The 25-mile Portsmouth trail runs from Page Street in Manchester to Ash Swamp Road in Newfields.

4. Ammonoosuc Recreational Rail Trail

This multi-use rail-trail is the most frequented of the Whitefield Snowmobile Trails in NH. It is 19 miles long and starts from Central Street in Woodsville, connects to Blackmount Trail (Woodsville to Haverhill). It then ends at Industrial Park Road in Littleton. The Ammonoosuc River provides you with gorgeous views as you ride. Must-see interest points along the way are the 345-foot 1832 Thompson Covered Bridge in Bath, the town’s Historical Society Museum, and the Lisbon Depot. You can reach the Woodsville trailhead via Exit 17 from I-91 and the Littleton trailhead via Exit 42 from I-93.

5. Cotton Valley Rail Trail

The 12-mile Cotton Valley Rail Trail begins at Depot Street in Wolfeboro across Lake Winnipesaukee’s Back Bay and ends at an archaic Old Boston and Maine Railroad Turntable Park in Wakefield. This exceptional four-season trail is one of only three rail-trails under DNCR management with intact rails. It is used recreationally by local rail car clubs and offers gorgeous scenery, especially around Lake Wentworth and Crescent Lake. The trail transitions into glimpses of railroad history as you draw closer to the end.

6. Barrington Snowmobile Trails

The Derry and Windham Rail Trails are part of this trail system and will soon become part of the Granite State Rail Trail, a 125-mile trail that will run from Massachusetts to the Vermont border. From the Derry segment, beautifully maintained trails slice through wetlands and wooded areas in southern New Hampshire, cross Beaver Brook, and end at the trailhead in Hood Park. From the Windham segment, trails follow a railbed taken out of service by the Boston and Maine Railroad in the 80s.

7. Northern Recreational Rail Trail

This 58-mile recreational rail-trail in western New Hampshire is the longest rail-trail under the Bureau of Trails management. It crosses nine short bridges over the Mascoma River between Enfield and Canaan in the first four miles and uses the right-of-way of the Boston and Maine Railroad’s former Northern Line. The path is heavily wooded in the first ten miles and becomes denser midway through the track. Andover’s Potter Place Railroad Station, the depot’s museum, and the Blackwater River are just some of the attractions you will pass before reaching Boscawen.

White and Black Snowmobile on a Mountain with Red Backpack

8. Ashuelot Recreational Rail Trail

Views surrounding this trail inspired Nancy Priest Wakefield when she wrote “Over the River” in April of 1860. This 21.5-mile trail traces the Ashuelot Railroad corridor, which served the area from 1851 until 1983. The rail-trail begins as an asphalt path in Keene, crosses the Ashuelot River 0.3 miles near West Swanzey, and passes east of Pisgah State Park and many more old mills and historical landmarks until the trail ends at a trailhead on NH 63. If you want to ride further, you can pick up the Fort Hill Recreational Rail Trail near the area and continue to Brattleboro, Vermont.

9. Cheshire Recreational Rail Trail

This 42-mile trail runs from North Walpole to Fitzwilliam and is part of the Rindge NH snowmobile trails and one of the two longest recreational rail-trails in the state. The Walpole section to the center of Keene proves to be trickier with turns that are difficult to spot and several steep inclines. Three other trails, including the Ashuelot Recreational Trail, also meet here. The southern segment is less challenging and feels more secluded from town. You reach Troy nine miles into this section, where you will find restaurants and some railroad relics. The trail ends in the outskirts of Fitzwilliam at the New Hampshire–Massachusetts border.

10. Conway Branch Recreational Rail Trail

The Conway Snowmobile Trails stretch 21 miles from Polly’s Crossing in Ossipee to West Main Street in Conway. It has many different areas of interest. This trail is part of the Barrington snowmobile trails and is used primarily by local rail car clubs and trains. It has seasonally active tracks between Silver Lake and Boulder Road in Madison. Parking spots are in Route 28 in Ossipee and at White Lake State Park and several other places.

11. Bear Notch Snowmobile Trail System

The Bear Notch Trail is one of the most distinct trail systems in the White Mountain Region and is also the most family-friendly. The trail network consists of a 50-mile closed-loop system where all 11 trails are linked, making it almost impossible for novice riders to get lost. Paths take you over Bear Notch Road, where you can catch breathtaking views of Mt. Washington and Presidential Range in one of the scenic overlooks. Then you traverse Albany Brook, Owl’s Cliff, and Sawyer River Trails to the Railroad.

12. Moultonboro Snowmobile Trails

Explore the Castle in the Clouds in this section of the NH Lakes Region. Here, the landscape is coated in sparkling snow, enticing you to make the most out of your snowy vacation. Ride over 100 miles of trails or take a detour and hike Red Hill or the Ossipee Mountain Range. While you’re there, you can have lunch while enjoying beautiful views. Or hit the slopes and ski in nearby Sunapee or Bartlett. Whichever activity you choose to do, it is best to have an NH snowmobile map – available at convenience stores throughout the region.

Snowmobiling in New Hampshire Requirements

A trail pass is not required, but registration is mandatory for all snowmobiles and OHRVs operated outside of the property. It can be obtained through the state’s Fish and Game Department.

Aside from registration, State law requires all operators 12 years of age and over to have either a valid Motor Vehicle Driver’s License or complete an approved OHRV or Snowmobile Safety Education Class. Information on online courses and in-person class schedules and requirements are available online.

Snowmobile Registration Process in New Hampshire

You can register in person at any one of the registration agents listed online, at the Fish and Game headquarters in Concord, or via mail by downloading an application form from their website. Once completed, you will receive a printed white certificate and two decals. You must carry the registration certificate with you at all times and properly affix the decals to your OHRV or snowmobile. Like Wisconsin, NH registrations are valid from the date of issue through June 30 of the following year. Registration fees range from $66 to $116, depending on residency and club membership.

For non-residents who prefer to ride an OHRV over a snowmobile, a Temporary 10-Day OHRV Registration is available only at select agents from May to October. As the name suggests, this registration is valid for ten consecutive days from the start date and time specified on the registration requires a valid out-of-state driver’s license and is non-transferable.

Snowmobile Trail Sign on Tree in Forest

NH Snowmobile Trail Map App

Two popular apps are the New Hampshire Snowmobile Trail Map by GPS Trailmasters, and the NH Snowmobile Trails 2020 created by the New Hampshire Snowmobile Association (NHSA). The first one comes with a preloaded MicroSD card and easily installs on smartphones, tablets, computers, and even Garmin GPS. With this app, trails are color-coded to distinguish corridor, secondary, and club trails. Unique line styles identify lake crossings, plowed roads, and closed and ungroomed trails. It also comes with a feature called “Where To ” that provides information on fuel, lodging, food, etc.

The NH Snowmobile Trails 2020 app works without data coverage and allows you to enjoy its functionalities anywhere. With GPS, you can find your location on the map, view nearby restaurants, gas stations, hotels, parking, and other comforts. You can also get the distance between you and a specific point in the trail. Best of all, you can quickly load and save itineraries.

Conclusion – NH Snowmobile Trails 

So, whare the top NH snowmobile trails? To summarize, here they are once again:

  1. Pittsburg Snowmobile Trail System
  2. Concord Snowmobile Trails
  3. Rockingham Recreational Rail Trail
  4. Ammonoosuc Recreational Rail Trail
  5. Cotton Valley Rail Trail
  6. Barrington Snowmobile Trails
  7. Northern Recreational Rail Trail
  8. Ashuelot Recreational Rail Trail
  9. Cheshire Recreational Rail Trail
  10. Conway Branch Recreational Rail Trail
  11. Bear Notch Snowmobile Trail System
  12. Moultonboro Snowmobile Trails

There are tons of other snowmobile trails in New Hampshire that offer great rides. A lot depends on personal opinion and what you like. Perhaps you prefer sightseeing over longer routes. Other locations like the Laconia Notch are exclusively for skiing due to their steep slopes that would be too dangerous for a snowmobile to ride. Furthermore, there are still untouched areas in the region where the landowners have opted to preserve the beauty of the place for themselves, prohibiting public access into their property.

There are so many great options to snowmobile in NH. Before riding, make sure to check NH trail conditions, and have fun!

Kris Peter

Adventure seeker and off-road enthusiast. I love the thrill of going off-road and taking on the elements.

Recent Posts