It was too busy in Franconia. As we walked along the paths all I could hear was the barking of dogs. That and the yelps and cries of those who had lost their balance on the ice. It was a beautiful day and people were streaming North. Its the way of the Spring up here. Down south they can see the grass in their yards so the flock to the mountains.
I love Franconia Notch, but this weekend I felt an increasing need to get further north. I couldn’t handle the people, the interaction and the noise. It was too much. I needed quiet and a place to experience nature alone. So we escaped the Notch, leaving the noise and the chaos behind.
We went further north, off the beaten path. Past the notch and off the highway. Towards the headwaters of the Saco, where my heart calls home. It’s a town where the resort down the road has reduced main street to nothing less than a whisper. The bustling main street of my childhood, is nothing more than a memory. Yet this is why I thrive here. I loved the quiet and below the shadow of the big mountain. I love that this place is forgotten, and that tourist pass on to ‘better” destinations. I will keep my quiet little town in between the notches.
This is where the Crawford’s settled among these mighty mountains. These are the forests where Ethan Allen Crawford wandered. These created a living out of nothing. These men blazed a trail up the mountain, and created a legacy that continues today. They cleared the road ad the paths, and helped turn the White Mountains into what it is today.
The sun beats down as I trace my way pass the history of this place. To make it down to the river I walk down the old railroad bed. The trail of a scar of when Timber Barons such as J.E Henry nearly brought the forest it’s knees. The trail is a scar that is slowly melting into the undergrowth.
Its Spring here, and the Ammonoosuc is up. The river barrels down its banks slamming into the rocks upon its edge, and its banks. Spring has a way of cleansing this place, and when I look up I can see that on the trees the buds are beginning to open. I listen as the river continues on, and I am calmed by the sweet noise. If I listen close enough I can almost hear the whispers of history on the wind.