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Thread: No More Parking at Lowes Store

  1. #31
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DayTrip View Post
    Why aren't there more/any food trucks at trail heads?? My wife and I talk about this whenever we are up there. Seems like an absolute no-brainer on FRI/SAT/SUN and holiday weekends. Are there permit/legal issues for food trucks in NH?
    My guess it would depend on the Trailhead. Within the National Forest I would expect some sort of Permit to operate as a Concession might be needed. Other trailheads not within the forest would most likely be left up to local ordinances. In the Conways Food Trucks although not at trailheads we’re doing quite well the Summer of 2019. Although they were subjected to permitting. Each individual food truck was only allowed to stay in one location for two weeks. The model was working pretty good and was fueling some local entrepreneurialism even at the High School level. I would think that Ski Areas could benefit from some food trucks but also would be subject to permitting. Personally I find the whole culture to be quite fun.
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  2. #32
    Senior Member Mike P.'s Avatar
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    You'd need a trailhead with enough room for walking space and for a truck. Considering we're parking on the parkway and all over Mt. Clinton Road and Lincoln Woods is packed early on weekends and weekdays in the summer. Ski areas, and the Cog may be the only areas with enough room. Now if they had them at Marcy Field and the Van Hovenberg Sled Center with an active shuttle, you might drive some shuttle fans. This may be better when you feel better being maskless in a bus eating and with other people.
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  3. #33
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    Most NH towns have transient business regulations mostly to prevent nuisance businesses from popping up. The town requires a permit within certain conditions to operate. Its costly to have a fixed business and the local business owners that potentially compete with the food trucks generally object. Some towns in the north country like Conway have passed food truck specific regulations. There was a food truck working the Gorham area but they were mostly working the farmers market and the ATV trade and have recently moved into a closed business. The Road Hawg BBQ started out as food truck that worked the fair circuit and then settled in Gorham. I have been surprised that the ATV complex along RT 110 has not generated more food truck traffic.

    I don't see the national forest embracing food trucks. In theory its possible under a special use permit, but that is major effort that can take years. My guess is the ski areas with a existing permit and infrastructure could add food trucks year round and the state could easily trucks to the Tramway complex, but given there is a state concession in the Tram building,why bring in competition?. My guess is Lafayette place would be another story as I think the state is very limited to what they can do there. The joke is the ski areas have far more impact on the forest than a parking lot full of food trucks yet they pay a minimal amount of money for the right to impact large blocks of public land.

    On the other hand the Lowe's complex is on private land and outside the WMNF boundary. Its a disturbed site with safe highway access in an area with high traffic in general and a steady stream of hikers. My guess is anyone hiking along RT2 would be willing to stop at a cluster of food trucks rather than driving to Twin Mtn to stop at the store on their way home.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    IMO, a paved spot with electrical hookups and porta potties and space for several food trucks would be ideal for hiker traffic.
    Yeah, it would probably be a shame if a big tourist to do happened on the flats. There is always the danger of some such attempt to open the door to some cheesy tourist attraction. We have a couple food trucks working Bethlehem the past couple years, and I'm not sure what the deal is as one would park right in front of and now to the side of WREN and the Cold Mt. Cafe, and I think they were cooperating. Then they were in front the post office and Maya Papaya which I found irritating since they were obstructing access to the postal box I used almost daily after hours on my commute home. That seemed to only last a short time as I think the town said something.

    One of the things that slowed down their business at Lowes, is that Alan and his son in law Kevin stopped doing heavy rescue towing a few years back. They sold off their heaviest rig, and they kept a lighter one last I knew. Kevin is the road agent in town last I knew, so it was just too much dealing with calls at random hours along with the responsibilities of the roads.

  5. #35
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    An update as of 5/14/21 from the RMC's Facebook Page:Attention Hikers!
    With the snow gone, the Lowe family is graciously allowing folks to park at their store again. There are no fees, but please show your gratitude by keeping the lot neat and packing out all your trash.
    Please note that the store, it’s services and it’s bathrooms are not available at this time. Plan ahead!
    Have a safe weekend everyone!
    Last edited by skiguy; 05-15-2021 at 02:40 PM.
    "I'm getting up and going to work everyday and I am stoked. That does not suck!"__Shane McConkey

  6. #36
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    Been no updates on this since mid-May. Was curious what the latest situation is:
    1) Is parking still allowed there?
    2) Same spot - far right as you face the store?
    3) Is the property being plowed (not sure there has been enough snow yet to evaluate this) for possible Winter access to Lowe's Path?

    Haven't been out that way in awhile and was curious if Lowe's Path is still an option for Winter. Alternatively, is Bowman being plowed for possible Bowman>Rail Trail>Lowes Path access (again knowing it may be too early in season to evaluate) and is it seeing any Winter use given the limited trail choices from there? Was considering doing the "old school" routes to some of the 4k's this year (such as the Edmands Col route to Jefferson) and this was a previously key parking area to access before plowing of Base Rd.

    Any info on the current status would be helpful. Thanks in advance.

  7. #37
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    I have not seen anything official on Lowes. Unlike last year Gray Knob and Crag Camp are open for the winter (Gray Knob has a new upgraded solar system). That means the demand will be there for parking at Lowes but unless some outside organization plows it. I suspect it will not be plowed as the store is closed. There really has not been enough snow to plow yet.

    Bowman is not normally plowed. Once it gets plowed in by a major storm it stays that way except on rare occasions there have been large snowmachine events that have opened it up to run a rest area (do not plan on it) Some hikers are parking at a plowed plow turn around a short distance west of Bowman. Unless there is no chance of snow operations I would avoid that option as the plow drivers open up that spot for their use not hikers. Most folks just park along the banking and hope.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    I have not seen anything official on Lowes. Unlike last year Gray Knob and Crag Camp are open for the winter (Gray Knob has a new upgraded solar system). That means the demand will be there for parking at Lowes but unless some outside organization plows it. I suspect it will not be plowed as the store is closed. There really has not been enough snow to plow yet.

    Bowman is not normally plowed. Once it gets plowed in by a major storm it stays that way except on rare occasions there have been large snowmachine events that have opened it up to run a rest area (do not plan on it) Some hikers are parking at a plowed plow turn around a short distance west of Bowman. Unless there is no chance of snow operations I would avoid that option as the plow drivers open up that spot for their use not hikers. Most folks just park along the banking and hope.
    Yah that's what I was afraid of. Thanks for the update.

  9. #39
    Moderator bikehikeskifish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DayTrip View Post
    Yah that's what I was afraid of. Thanks for the update.
    Bring a shovel!

    Tim
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  10. #40
    Senior Member ChrisB's Avatar
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    Be nice if the RMC plowed the Lowe’s lot and charged a small fee.
    Don't let your mind write a check your body can’t cash

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikehikeskifish View Post
    Bring a shovel!

    Tim
    I don't actually have a problem with that but it doesn't sound safe leaving a car on Rte 2 in that area given the plowing situation.

  12. #42
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    So I am assuming that with this new restriction taking Air Line > Randolph Path > Spur Trail would now be the "default" route to the camps and the most likely trails to be broken out? It would be curious to see if they were to develop the Bowman lot into smaller version of Appalachia if it would help spread out the volume of hikers and add a little balance to the area.

  13. #43
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    I have previously commented that the lower section of Lowes could be routed through the recent Randolph Town Forest land acquisition and connect up with the Rollo Falls trail that shares a trail head with Castle trail at Bowman. Note there is private home way in the back of the field that is pretty well out of sight that used to plow this area but it had not been year-round for a while. When it was year round, hiker parking was point of contention as hikers prevented the driveway from being plowed properly. Lowes is a historical trail and my guess is this would not be acceptable. I do not see the state voluntarily maintaining another hiker lot. I also so not think the RMC would be interested in taking plowing and parking into their control. Appalachia long ago was designed to combine multiple trailheads along the relocated RT2 into one location. The trails used to follow the watersheds off the ravines and that naturally brought them to Ravien lodge, when RT 2 got relocated the club had to cut the trails and run them to Appalachia. The odld routes are still there that go to route 2 and are still used for rescue access.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    I have previously commented that the lower section of Lowes could be routed through the recent Randolph Town Forest land acquisition and connect up with the Rollo Falls trail that shares a trail head with Castle trail at Bowman. Note there is private home way in the back of the field that is pretty well out of sight that used to plow this area but it had not been year-round for a while. When it was year round, hiker parking was point of contention as hikers prevented the driveway from being plowed properly. Lowes is a historical trail and my guess is this would not be acceptable. I do not see the state voluntarily maintaining another hiker lot. I also so not think the RMC would be interested in taking plowing and parking into their control. Appalachia long ago was designed to combine multiple trailheads along the relocated RT2 into one location. The trails used to follow the watersheds off the ravines and that naturally brought them to Ravien lodge, when RT 2 got relocated the club had to cut the trails and run them to Appalachia. The odld routes are still there that go to route 2 and are still used for rescue access.
    I do recall that. I was just thinking out loud. Wasn't really addressing the feasability of it.

  15. #45
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    FYI - Gordan (Alan) Lowe passed away December 24th 2021 RIP.

    The obituary is in the Berlin Daily Sun today (12/30/21)

    (note: I, bikehikeskifish/Tim, edited the year to be 2021)
    Last edited by bikehikeskifish; 12-30-2021 at 12:29 PM.

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