And of course at the border, you see the state motto...
I was surprised by the French on the sign. And I don't like it. But only because Quebec does not offer the same consideration to the English language.
Coming into the town of North Conway it is nice to see the mountains.
North Conway has a lot of outlet malls and shopping because New Hampshire has no state sales tax. Or income tax. The state of New Hampshire survives on property taxes, and tourists pay a 9% tax to stay in hotels and eat in restaurants. I like New Hampshire. Oh, and I think the state has a lot fewer social programs and welfare, but I'm not positive how all that works. If anybody wants to chime in with an explanation, please do so.
With all these shopping malls and of course a Walmart and a new Lowes store, there has to be lots of RV parking, right? Well there is, but there are also signs everywhere saying "NO OVERNIGHT PARKING". Walmart also has signs, although I think they specifically include the term no overnight camping, but I'll have to check on that.
So anyhow, we parked Sherman at the Lowes store and hopped in to the little car. We went and got gas, at $3.65 a gallon (about $0.94 per litre CAN) and then stopped at the police station to ask about the overnight parking laws. Interestingly, they tell us that the municipality does NOT have any parking restrictions that are enforced at this time of year, only during the winter. I asked about the stores and the signs there and was told that we would have to take that up with the stores themselves.
Then, we went to the ranger station for White Mountain National Forest. This forest is full of tourists, so they have a lot more rules about roadside camping than they do in some of the southwest areas of the U.S.. There is only one road in the whole park where you can camp for free, and it's 9 miles (16 kms) down a mostly single lane dirt road. They do have lots of campgrounds though....at between $16-$20 a night. Anyhow, we hop in the little car and take a ride down that road. Sure enough, it's in the middle of nowhere, and there's nobody around. Would have made a good boondocking spot for Sherman for a couple of days, but it was just too far in to make it worthwhile. We parked at the end for a few minutes and took Whiskey for a walk on a trail for 10 minutes or so.
For 9 miles (16 kms) the road was pretty much like this.
Then we turned around and went back into North Conway. Along the way, I saw a sign for the Cranmore Mountain Ski Resort, and I know that we have boondocked at closed up ski resorts during the summer. But we asked at the office, and they said sure, we could overnight there. They have a huge parking lot.
Then we went back to the Lowes store to pick up Sherman. Just for fun, I went inside and asked if we could park overnight. The manager said that he has no problem, that it was an agreement with the city that put the signs up, but that he wouldn't say no. So it turns out that overnight parking IS allowed in North Conway, but the signs are there to discourage it. Interesting.
Just after getting Sherman parked up at Cranmore Mountain, I reached into my pocket for my wallet. It was NOT there. But, there sure was a nice big hole in the bottom of my pocket!
The last time I used my wallet was to put gas in the little car. So, I left Ruth behind to make dinner, while I hopped in the little car and retraced my steps ( and our drive) since I got gas. Checked all the places we had been, except the 9 mile (16 km) drive into the bush.
So this morning, I hopped into the little car at 7:00am and took a drive all the way back up the little dirt road.
Still nothing. So I have no wallet. There wasn't any cash in it, and only a couple of credit cards and my drivers licence, so not a disaster, but still a pain in the ass. Oh well, can't do anything about it and it's nobody's fault...just one of those things. That's where I'm going to leave the story for now.
But...stay tuned for tomorrow morning's post...we have had another interesting day so far today!