If you are looking to slow the pace and take a step back in time, it doesn’t get much better than Hancock! Settled in 1764 and incorporated in 1779, it was named in honor of John Hancock, signer of the Declaration of Independence.
We spent a week at a beautiful lakehouse at Nubanusit Lake to unplug from current events and technology. The lakehouse was the first to be built there in the early 1900s and the smells and sounds instantly gave us a good sign that this would be a week to relax and recharge.
The fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and swimming were all top-notch. The water was clear and amazing as always. The weather cooperated for the most part. “Nubi” can be a challenge on windy days.
Geographically, Nubanusit sits between the towns of Nelson and Hancock. As you work your way around the lake, you will find N and H markers at the town line. That is, depending on which direction you are headed; NH one way or HN the other. It had me stumped the first visit or two until I put things together. “NH” adds another unique feature to the lake!
The lake offers a two for one bonus in Spoonwood! If you work your way to the right of the boat launch, you will find a spillway and a set of stairs leading to Spoonwood. It is a short portage of 50 feet or so and you are in the paddle only pond. It is very remote and quiet and you are likely to see loons, blue heron, eagles and any number of other wildlife.
We managed to fit in one “loop” during our stay. If you paddle to the far end of Spoonwood, you can portage one more time to enter the far end of Nubanusit. It is a bit more work but worth the treat.
The Harris Center for Conservation Education
Another hidden gem in Hancock is the Harris Center. It is on the list to explore fully on another adventure, but here are some basics that might entice you to beat me to the punch. The Harris Center for Conservation Education offers numerous camps and educational opportunities for citizens of all ages. Their website states that more than 3,000 local students from over 30 schools participate in their events each year.
The Harris Center works to conserve a “SuperSanctuary” consisting of 36,000 acres spanning across 8 different towns. They have a network of trails that offer countless hiking options.
We took a road trip to explore what other hidden gems Hancock had to offer. The relaxing road trip along “The King’s Highway” unveiled a winding country road, The Harris Center, and numerous meticulous country homes.
Old Dublin Road took us into the center of town where more treats awaited.
Center of Hancock
Pine Ridge Cemetary seemed to beg for a few pictures to be taken. The cemetery and nearby War Memorial are reminders of how far back New Hampshire’s history goes.
It isn’t hard to envision the Square and quaint surrounding buildings bustling with horses and buggies and people taking care of their household and local business needs back in a slower time. Everything is within a good stone’s throw of one another.
The Hancock Inn definitely stood out as one of the most historical buildings on the Square. It has been serving travelers since 1789 and is the oldest continually operating Inn in all of New Hampshire!
The nearby Hancock Market offered everyday staples. Fiddleheads Cafe offered an amazing variety of foods for a small-town restaurant!
The Hancock Congregational Church, Post Office, Police station, and other town buildings are all nestled around the Square.
Visit this link on Hancock to view a picturesque video and learn more about the town.
Have you ever been to Hancock or Nubanusit? Share your favorite New Hampshire gem in the comments section below!
Great blog. Really enjoyed the history lesson.Evelyn
Glad you enjoyed it Aunt Ev! It is a beautiful area!
You always do such a great job. They are so interesting and informative that it makes you want to get up go. Pictures are great also.
Thank you so much Aunt Jean. It has been fun to “explore” New Hampshire with a new set of eyes! Still working on improving the photos :0).
I lived in Hancock for over 40 years. It’s a special place. It once achieved 90% voter turnout. And usually comes close.
Favorite story: Lake Nubanusit is a beautiful, pristine lake that draws many summer residents
and visitors. In the winter, it draws quite a few ice fishermen. Some drive their pick-up trucks out
to their huts. Some wait too long in the season, still think they can make it, but don’t.
2005 was a particularly bad year. A pick-up went out, sank – and moments later, another one followed. Fortunately, the drivers escaped. Then, a tow truck was sent to pull out the two
pick-up trucks. Unfortunately, the tow truck – being heavier – also sank.
The select board put up a sign telling people to be more careful – and if not, the rescuees
would be paying for any future rescue costs. However, some of us were disappointed the selectboard did not take the opportunity to add another sign saying…
“Welcome to Lake Tow-be-gone.”
Thanks so much for that great story, Mary! I think I remember a sign saying “This isn’t Alaska and you are not an Ice Road Trucker, please stay off the ice!”
HaHa – Another good one, Tim – and much shorter!