The Hampstead Conservation Area is anearly 200 acre parcel of land was originally acquired in the early 1980’s encompassing the Pickard farm and the Mathes lands. Its 12 miles of trails meander around a swamp that abuts Hog Hill Pond.
It forms just part of Hampstead's ExtensiveTrail Netowrk.
The trails are generally in very good condition. No illegal ATV use is present. There is some climbing to be had, but erosion is minimal. No big rock gardens are present and large exposed roots are few. A good half dozen bridges span the water crossings and the trails are
located in dry areas. A couple of trails have some nice rock formations nearby, including one large rock where you can practice your wheelie drops right along the trail.
A Kiosk is located in the parking area. There are many trails not shown on the trail head map. Although the kiosk color codes these trails, they are not blazed with those colors.
The orange trail is a quick beginner loop that goes through the field to the south. The blue trails leave from the back side of that field. The trail makes a nice loop through a wooded section and is a fun ride. If you head straight from the parking area along the red trail, you should eventually come to Route 121 along the back side of the area. The terrain is mostly rolling hills, with some short technical sections.
The trails to the left of the main trail, which are not on the kiosk map, are some of the most entertaining. The first left takes you back to West Road where you can cross it for a small fast loop. The second left (along a stone wall) gets you into some real fun. It covers a wider selection of terrain and different rock formations. Take time to explore…. you can’t really get lost.
You can also cross West Road (at Governors Island Road) for a very fast ride down some old logging roads, also suited for beginners.
40 West Rd is located off of Route 111 on the western side of Hampstead. Parking is 0.5 mile up West road, on the right.
Owned/Managed: Town of Hampstead
Maintained by: Hampstead Conservation Commission
By Peter DeSantis & Beth Woodbury
Taken from their book
Get Out and Mountain Bike! Southern New Hampshire.
© Copyright 2005