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October 10. 2013 9:31PM

NH foliage watchers have options despite campgrounds closed by feds


Facilities run by the U.S. Forest Service along the Kancamagus Highway may be closed by the federal government shutdown, but the scenic highway itself is open for leaf-peeping. (UNION LEADER FILE)

The New Hampshire Campground Owners Association said that privately owned campgrounds and state parks and campgrounds in the White Mountains will be open on Columbus Day weekend.

The U.S. Forest Service has directed campgrounds on federal lands to close during the federal government shutdown.

A list of private and state park campgrounds open this weekend can be found on nhlovescampers.com. Visitors can also call 1-800-822-6764 to check on availability.

And for a list of state parks, visit www.nhstateparks.org.

State tourism officials said Thursday that while ranger stations in the White Mountain National Forest are closed, the forest itself remains open and accessible to visitors. Pull-offs along the Kancamagus Highway (Route 112) in the WMNF also are open.

According to the campground owners association, the following will be open in the White Mountain National Forest:

• Hiking trails and roadside pull-offs.

• Kancamagus Highway.

• Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC): The AMC huts, AMC's Joe Dodge Lodge, AMC's Pinkham Notch Visitor Center, AMC's Highland Center and Cardigan Lodge.

• New Hampshire state parks and state park campgrounds

• Welcome centers and rest rooms operated by the state, chambers of commerce or other private entities.

• Forest Service roads, except for Tripoli Road and Zealand.

• The section of the Appalachian Trail in the White Mountain National Forest is open because it crosses national forest and state lands.

• The New England Trail.


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