It’s autumn in New Hampshire, which means the leaf peepers are here, the apple cider is hot, and the pumpkins are ready to be picked! For us, the cooler temperatures and fall foliage mean we’re spending a lot more time walking Durham’s trails.
On one particular walk through College Woods, my husband mentioned visiting a really big tree back in the day. “I think it is the biggest tree in the state,” he wondered out loud, but I wasn’t listening because I was already searching “really big tree Durham NH” on my phone.
Two days later, Kevin Martin’s book Big Trees of New Hampshire was waiting at my door when I arrived home. Was it a little irresponsible to impulsively purchase a $25 book about big trees in NH? I don’t think so, but my husband wasn’t as sure.
The next weekend, with the big tree book in hand, we were off to Adam’s Point in search of New Hampshire’s largest shagbark hickory!
After we successfully found (and hugged) Durham’s big tree, we headed to Crackskull’s Coffee and Books to refuel and regroup. We decided from there to search for one of Newmarket’s big trees, but unfortunately our big tree adventure came to an end due to overgrown trails and confusing directions.
As it turns out, I am not the only one interested in celebrating big trees. The NH Big Tree Program at the University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension, which began nearly 70 years ago, finds and records NH’s biggest trees. Go find (and hug) a really big tree near you.
About that really big tree my husband visited as a kid? We later found out he was talking about the locally-famous Paul Bunyan tree, which according to this mention of it, no longer holds any records.