Watchable Wildlife Viewing Sites in New Hampshire
When you see a roadside sign with binoculars on it, wildlife is nearby.
Photo courtesy US fish & wildlife service
How amazing would it be to see baby eagles like these, still in their nest. It’s possible. New Hampshire Fish & Game has designated “watchable wildlife viewing sites” along roads all over the state where you can see moose, bear, deer, fisher, snowshoe hare, fox, dark-eyed juncos, evening grosbeaks, loons, osprey, grouse and more.
At one of the many sites in the North Country — on Pontook Reservoir just north of Milan Village — there’s what Fish & Game regional wildlife biologist Will Staats calls “an active bald eagle nest.” Pull over on Rte. 16 and you’ll see it across the water. Take your binoculars and, if your timing’s right, you’ll see some activity. If you’re really lucky, you’ll see eaglets.
That’s just one of the viewing areas along what locals call “thirteen-mile woods,” a block of forestland south of Errol where Rte. 16 hugs the Androscoggin. You can get a guide to all the sites at Fish & Game.
For a route that takes you past a number of watchable wildlife spots, Staats recommends going from Milan north to Errol and then up the Maine border, back down to Errol and across to Dixville Notch, over to Colebrook and down Rte. 3 to Lancaster or up Rte. 3 to Pittsburg and up to the Canadian border along the portion of Rte. 3 called “Moose Alley.” Staats says be sure to stop at the moose viewing platform at the base of Dixville Notch on Rte. 26. For on-the-spot information about what you might see as you drive along, you can tune into Fish & Game’s radio station, 1610 AM.
Tips for wildlife viewers: Check the season; most sites only offer opportunities at certain times of the year. Watch at dawn and dusk; that’s when most wildlife is active. Use the right tools: a field guide, binoculars and comfortable shoes. Use a blind to hide, even your car would work. Be patient. Be quiet.