Rockingham Trail/Lake Massabesic

Workday or not, an 80-degree spring day calls for some trail time. Decked out in business clothes and dress shoes, I spent midday on a tame but worthwhile path: the Rockingham Recreational Trail from its Lake Massabesic trailhead in Auburn.

Rockingham Recreational Trail (Portsmouth branch), Auburn NH, east of NH Rt. 121

Rockingham Recreational Trail (Portsmouth branch), Auburn NH, east of NH Rt. 121

The trail extends more than twenty miles east to Newfields, which would make an interesting bike ride some other day. Pressed for time today, I walked only about a mile and a half before retracing my steps back to my car. I took my time to enjoy the birds (quite a variety near the lake) and take a few pictures from a boat launch. The trail is unpaved but wide and well-trodden. It was popular this midday: moms with kids, a guy fishing in a trailside pond, lots of dog walkers, even one dirt biker in defiance of the no-motorized-vehicle rule. (The operator’s trail manners were impeccable, aside from the motorized part.)

View of Lake Massabesic from boat launch just off Rockingham Rec Trail and NH Rt. 121.

View of Lake Massabesic from boat launch just off Rockingham Rec Trail and NH Rt. 121.

More information on this trail can be found on the New Hampshire State Parks web site and in the book New Hampshire Rail Trails by Charles Martin.

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