Appalachian Trail Community: Hanover, New Hampshire

Hanover warmly welcomes Appalachian Trail hikers, applauds their perseverance and achievements, and celebrates the enrichment that their presence brings to town.

Hanover is a town of approximately 10,000 on the NH side of the Connecticut River in the area known as the Upper Valley.  The town celebrates its 250th birthday in 2011.  The Appalachian Trail runs down Main Street—one of only 10 towns where the main street and the A.T. coincide.  It is the first town that southbound hikers pass through on their journey and the last for northbounders.

Hanover is home to Dartmouth College, an Ivy League university founded in 1769.  Some trails in the extensive trail network created by the Dartmouth Outing Club in the early 20th century became the A.T. in the Upper Valley in 1929.  The DOC maintains 75 miles of the A.T. between Woodstock, Vermont and Woodstock, NH.

Hanover is also home to the Hanover Area Friends of the A.T.  The Friends group was created in 2009 to assure that (a) Hanover fully welcomes and serves A.T. hikers and (b) our residents and guests understand and appreciate this national treasure that passes through our town.  

Members of the Friends group have implemented the following initiatives since its founding:
  • Reblazed the trail through town (the blazes had disappeared when streetlights were replaced)
  • Created a shower/laundry facility in the recreation center
  • Installed a 13’ map of the A.T. in the library and placed a hiker log book at the main door
  • Installed road signs to help hikers find the library
  • Produced a brochure that orients hikers to town
  • Arranged for special offers for hikers from local merchants.
  • Invited hikers to weekly community suppers
  • Created an emergency transportation network
  • Sponsored a showing of the video Trek, followed by a panel of thru- and section hikers (attended by 90+ people at The Howe Library)
  • Produced shows for local community-access television (Friends panel; broadcast of the Trek/hiker-panel event)
  • Applied for Community Partner status
 
Friends initiatives currently under development:
  • Public service announcement for CATV
  • Kiosk for Main Street
  • Another spring event at the Howe Library
  • Exhibit and activities relating to the A.T. in conjunction with Hanover’s 250th birthday celebration

Trail-related resources in the Upper Valley:
  • Upper Valley Trails Alliance
  • Hanover Conservation Council

AT Blaze over Appalachian Trail Community Hanover NH