Just Be Exhilarated: Biking in Bethlehem, NH
Biking in the White Mountains of New Hampshire has become an increasingly popular activity for both thrill seekers and leisure riders alike. It’s an exciting way for people of all ages to get outdoors, explore nature, or try something new. Whether you’re looking to ride together as a family or peddle off on your own excursion, there’s a trail for everyone in Bethlehem!
The Bethlehem Trails Association (BTA) is an incredible organization based right here in town and has worked incredibly hard to develop a network of trails suitable for all skill levels. Many of these trails have direct access to local lodging and restaurants establishments, making it easy to rest and replenish after a long day of riding.
Plan a trip this spring or summer to bike in the highest town in New England! Check out our Q&A with Bethlehem Trails below to hear about our trails firsthand.
- Please tell us a bit about Bethlehem Trails Association.
The Bethlehem Trails Association was started by a group of Bethlehem residents and outdoor enthusiasts who one day realized they’d been privately sharing the same vision: a fantastic network of trails spinning through our small mountain community.
Once we stumbled upon this dream together, it was just too good to let it go. Too impossible to consider life without BTA being fully realized. So here we are! We now have almost 15 miles of amazing trails for all levels.
- What are 3-5 trails that can’t be missed? Are there certain trails that are better for beginners vs. more advanced bikers?
There are great trails for all levels of riders. We have a skills park to help hone skills, and fantastic beginner trails like People’s Court, and Clay Pigeon that meander through the forest offering everyone a great ride. We also have an amazing downhill ride called Shoulder Roll that some have described as one of the best trails they’ve ever ridden. And then there are our newest trails; two downhill trails, Ripple and Belly Roll that are flowy and fun, and end up along a beautiful trail by the river. Check out the trails on our website at BethlehemTrails.org.
- Are there any hotels, restaurants, or other notable locations in town with direct access to the bike trails?
Bethlehem now has two bike friendly lodging facilities, both very close to the trails; The Wayside Inn and the Presidential Mountain Resort both are welcoming and accommodating to cyclists and provide storage for bikes as well as tools and pumps if needed. And of course, if bike gear is needed there’s the Littleton Bike and Fitness a few minutes away, BTA’s Gear Library, and soon to come, Franconia Basecamp.
Rek-Lis, a mainstay in Bethlehem is right off the bike trails and offers excellent food and locally brewed beer; and Rosa Flamingo’s, also right off the bike trails offers excellent food and drinks. And for a quick snack, lighter meal, or a cup of delicious coffee, The Maia Papaya is also right off the trails.
- Will you be hosting any events this summer, Memorial Day – Labor Day?
We plan to host a number of events during the summer; some will be specific to BTA, and some will be in conjunction with the neighboring towns who also have great trail systems. We will also have a “bike month” at the end of the summer. Please check our website, BethlehemTrails.org throughout the summer for updates.
- Can you tell us a bit about the Gear Library you opened this winter? Will there be bike equipment available for rental?
We are very excited about BTA’s Gear Library. We opened it during the winter providing winter gear such as snowshoes, spikes, and trekking poles, all of which can be used right on our trails.
We expect to expand our gear offerings in the warmer months to include strider bicycles and helmets for kids to help visitors and locals alike get out on the trails. Check the website for availability.
- Can you briefly discuss your partnership and collaboration with other local biking organizations, including PRKR Mtn Trails and NH Tricycle?
We are incredibly fortunate to be in an area with avid cyclists in our surrounding towns and work very closely with PRKR Mountain in Littleton, and Franconia Area New England Member Biking Association (NEMBA) Association in Franconia. Between the three towns, we have over 75 miles of fantastic trails and we often do events together through our joint group, TricycleNH.com. Check out the website for upcoming events.