We recently received an email from a visitor that was going to be vacationing in Weirs Beach and he was looking for some 30 mile rides to take in the early mornings. Here is what we recommended:
Ride to Alton Bay – Take 11B to Route 11. At the intersection of 11B and 11 (Patrick’s Pub on the corner), turn left onto 11. Take 11 all the way down to Alton Bay and then back. From Weirs Beach area this is about a 35 mile ride and there are nice shoulders along much of the route. Some nice “off the main road” alternates on this route are Scenic Drive in Gilford and Route 11D in Alton. Both of these roads wind along the shore of Winnipesaukee. Although there are hills on this ride (this is NH after all!), there are no really tough climbs.
Gunstock and back on Route 11 – Start out on 11B to the intersection with Route 11. Go straight across 11 and stay on 11B. Continue following 11B until it ends at 11A. Turn left on 11A. This section of road has a long uphill climb. Continue on 11A until you reach Gunstock. If you haven’t been there before, its worth turning into Gunstock and checking out the area. There is a pond and some picnic tables that are a great place to take a break. If you follow the road around behind the main lodge and then to the right, you can head out along a stream and view the old wooden ski jumps on your left. When you are done at Gunstock, head back to 11A and turn right. Continue on 11A until it ends. There is a great long downhill a few miles past Gunstock – just be prepared to stop before the road ends at route 11! At the end of 11A, turn left onto 11 and follow it back to 11B and then turn right to head back to Weirs Beach.
Another option on both of these rides is to take Dockham Shore road off of 11B (I live on a street off of Dockham Shore). This is a peaceful road that goes along the shore and features some really beautiful homes and begins and ends on 11B. Us this option both ways on 11B and you’ll miss a nasty hill with narrow shoulders while enjoying some sightseeing.
North to Meredith and beyond – One last suggestion is to head north on Route 3 out of Weirs and head up to Meredith. Once you are in Meredith you can continue heading north towards Squam Lake or head east on Route 25. You can also check out the Ride Around Winnipesaukee ride on the Lakes Region Bicycling web site – you can always start out around the lake and just turn around after 15 miles or so.