Yes, this thread is delayed in its appearance here. There was eager anticipation for this tour report. See this link:
The Pink Eye is gone, but not before migrating to my other eye. I have not yet shaken off this bug. I am still kickin' but not raising much dust right now.
On Sunday October 15th the Central New Hampshire Model T club conducted its Tri-State Fall Foliage Tour beginning in Keene, NH. We met in the large parking lot of Home Depot so that there would be plenty of room for trailer parking as our club had extended an invitation to the NH Model A club. The weather forecast was for early morning temperatures in the low forties and rising into the mid seventies after the morning cloud cover and scattered fog burned off. Humidity would be very low. The day promised to be ideal for touring and the promise was kept.
The tour route is comprised of some miles of numbered state highways, many miles of secondary roads, and about fifteen miles of dirt roads with some covered bridges for good measure; just shy of eighty miles total. This section of New England can be quite hilly. Oh, there are some level areas, especially along rivers and in floodplains, but much of the terrain is not. Some might say that the roads are uphill both ways, although the truth is often that the steep incline is immediately followed by an equally steep decline. Some of this might sound challenging and even daunting to some T drivers, but excepting less than about five miles, all of this tour route existed during Model T times.
Chris (Iron Man) Landry drove his '15 speedster about sixty miles from his home through some fog and temps in the low forties.
Ted Mayville and Lea Forbes trailered Ted's '14 Touring.
Tour leader Bill Harper drove about a mile in his '24 runabout.
Jim and Kathy Wall drove about six miles in their '30 coupe.
Bob Bowes came "modern" and graciously served as "tail gunner".
Attendance was um, er, ah, well, light. Sometimes small groups have the biggest fun.
We left the HD parking lot and headed west on busy Route 9 for a very short distance and then used several residential streets to arrive at Arch Street. Prior to the building of the Route 9 Bypass in about 1960, Arch Street WAS Route 9. If you look in any of the travel books from the period (Automobile Blue Book as an example) a trip from Keene, NH to Brattleboro, VT would have had you use Arch Street. For a few miles we could be seeing some of the same views our motoring predecessors might have seen over 100 years ago.
This private home on Arch Street was a tavern and inn back in the 1800's and served weary travelers.
Another view farther up Arch Street.
This arched tunnel was built by the Cheshire Railroad in 1848.
The current Stonewall Farm can trace its agricultural roots back to 1759.
While this doesn't look like much, where the asphalt is missing you can see the original concrete slabs of old Route 9, now a driveway to a private home.
After the first of many inclines, we crossed busy Route 9 to continue for a few more miles on old Route 9. The speed limit is 55 MPH on the modern highway and is sometimes surpassed by the eastbound traffic descending steep Chesterfield Hill. We departed the what is now called Old Keene Road and soon found ourselves one of our dirt roads as we headed to our first stop.
Our intrepid travelers in beautiful downtown Chesterfield.
A few more pictures while still in New Hampshire.
We left The Shire and crossed the Connecticut River into Brattleboro, Vermont. We soon found ourselves climbing Kipling Road. By now the clouds were moving out, the temperature was rising and the day was becoming even more delightful.
I haven't discovered the original name for this road. It acquired its current name from a famous resident. British author Rudyard Kipling, who built a house which he called Naulakha here in 1893 and lived in untill 1896. During that short period the views (and, perhaps, the long winters cooped up indoors) inspired him to write: "Captains Courageous","The Jungle Book", "The Day's Work", and "The Seven Seas", and also did work on "Kim" and "The Just So Stories" which were published later.
We continued climbing and once in Dummerston, VT we headed west and still uphill. Eventually "what goes up must come down" and steep declines brought us to our next stationary photo opportunity.
That is New Hampshire beyond the tree line.
After a brief stretch and a look around we resumed our pleasant amble.
"Somehow" we found another old bridge.
We proceeded south on Route 30 for a couple of miles and turned right onto some more back roads to our lunch destination.
The Green Mountain Market and Deli makes Great hot and cold sandwiches, chili, soups, and naughty desserts: all drool worthy. We parked our noble steeds together to allow locals to drool, as well. The Walls and their Model A left us after lunch due to a prior commitment.
Nourished and refreshed, we headed east then south towards Guilford, VT. South Road is paved halfway up and then goes to dirt. And it IS up and up. Chris and I ascended the steep two (or more?) mile hill in high gear. Ted did, at some point, employ low. The road really leveled out for only a couple of car lengths and then dropped right off and was just as steep going down.
In Guilford we headed south on Route 5 for only a couple of miles and used Franklin Road to head east. Entering Route 142 in Vernon, VT we headed south.
Our pleasant journey continued through some fields and other open areas as the road paralleled the Connecticut River.
Eventually we were on Route 10 in Northfield, Massachusetts and began our trek north. Alas, the planed ice cream stop had to be scrubbed as they had closed for the season.
Re-entering New Hampshire we proceeded to Winchester and left Route 10 to revel in a pastoral back road and more covered bridges.
Covered bridges present to the vintage motorist the opportunity to test their vehicle's horn.
A few more miles brought us back to Route 9 and a turn into the Home Depot. A view looking east at that turn with Mt. Monadnock in the distance.
My elderly car brought home a souvenir, much as a child might.
The tour participants seemed to have enjoyed themselves and and the cars performed admirably with no need for anyone to reach for a tool. I was not chastised for The Tour Through Hell And Back.
To those of you who have endured to the end of this, I thank you. I hope that you do not feel that your time was mis-spent. Bill
Most fun I've had in days!
A silly thing. You mention several times about crossing state lines, on a model T tour. Some of us, that live in the larger states, can go for many years and not cross a state line! I was in the San Francisco Bay Area most of my life, and the nearest state line into Nevada was usually more than four hours drive away by modern car at freeway speeds. Oregon was a good seven hours away by the fastest route (by car). Even from Grass Valium, Nevada is well over an hour away on the fastest road available (there is NO good slow road).
It just seems odd to be crossing state lines a couple times on a quiet drive. Just a different state of reality I guess.
Beautiful roads! Wish I was there.
You get an A plus on this Tour Report.
Beautiful narrative and great images.
Thank you - it was as if I was along for the ride.
Enjoy your trip to see your son my friend .....
From a New Hampshire native who hasn't been back since 04, a hearty thank you. We have travelled much of those same roads with the different car clubs we had been affiliated with over the years. The scenery is spectacular
>It just seems odd to be crossing state lines a couple times on a quiet drive<
I worked for 10 years in the 70/80s for a mechanical contractor and the area we covered was roughly a triangle with Bangor Maine, Columbus Ohio, and Richmond Virginia at the corners. I left VA once and in 12 hr was in ME (we didn't adhere to the Nixon speed limit!), having driven through MD, DE, NJ, NY, CT, MA, and NH, and didn't think anything of it...but my passenger had grown up in Houston Texas and commented that back home he could drive 12 hr and still be in Texas!!!
Beautiful tour, thank you for sharing!
Bill Great pictures thanks for posting!
Wayne: I understand your fuzziness about crossing state lines, When returning From California to Florida we went through Texas and my daughter asked does Texas ever end?
You post made me homesick. I hope to get up there again before too long. Hope you feel better soon.
I enjoyed your report, also. On October 12 we left Boston in a rental car and drove through the same area! A stop in Baldwinville to visit Lang's, then across two state lines within about an hour to reach Brattleboro. The area these cars drove was in a corner close to all thee states. And upstate New York isn't far away also. We turned north from Brattleboro to drive north through the Green Mts to St Johnsbury, VT to see the wife's father and a cousin there. They said the colors were not the best this year, but it was still beautiful. I'm sorry our paths did not cross, after traveling that far from Washington.
Thank you for that wonderful tour report. I was able to travel through a good bit of New England when I was in the Service in the late 60's. I thought that New Hampshire and Vermont were the prettiest. Your tour pics haven't changed my mind.
Having been in New England only once, almost forty years ago, this makes me want to get back there in a T for some touring. Great scenery and historic sights, well presented.
Very nicely done, Bill.
Thank you for taking the time to post the travelogue.
Hope that your illness soon leaves you.
You folks do have some beautiful scenery there!
I also really liked some of your accidental rear-view mirror shots!
Well worth the short wait.
Great pics, thanks for sharing.
Kinda like I was in the back seat, thank you. Dave in Bellingham,WA
Nice photos, thanks.
Bill, looks like a great driving tour. The one lane steel bridge is similar to ones we have in this area. beautiful pics,thanks for posting
Bill, great camera work! The speedster looks it is wearing bridge cammo? Looks like you had great weather. Steve those things in the background are hills. That is very rare in Kansas?
Bill thanks for taking us along on tour.
I thought one of the stops was supposed to be the Chelsea Royal Diner?
Anyhow, we will be there on Saturday, part of or annual anniversary ride we take through Vt.
Great tour, if you do one in the future, I hope to make it as the T is finally on the road....as I am sure that would be a really long day on the doodlebug, haha.
Well, yes, that was the original plan, I brought us to the Green Mountain Market and Deli to offer it as another choice and, um, we just stayed there.
Please do join us Anytime! Your doodlebug is welcome, but it might be a tad slower than all of us
To All Of You,
Thank you for the kind words. Although they are not medicine, they have medicinal properties and make me feel better. Drive safely and often, Bill
Great report, Bill. It's like I was there. Oh wait - I was! :-)
Thanks for putting the tour together. It was a fantastic route. Really enjoyed it. It was a 200 mile day for me, and I had driven 100 miles the day before. My car was off the road for much of the summer, so I was trying to pack the season's driving into a few weekends.
Thanks so much Bill! Looked to me like a "perfect day"! And a very, VERY nice set of pictures. That's the sort of post a T-guy needs to revisit once in awhile during the long upcoming winter! Thanks again,....harold
Well,....I had to go back and enjoy the photos and "write-up" once more, and read more slowly and in detail. Kind of a neat "history lesson" which certainly adds interest to an otherwise beautiful set of pictures. Once again,....thank you Bill,....a beautiful tour, very expertly documented, both verbally as well as photographically! ......harold
Bill, that was a fine tour report and great pictures. That part of New England is about as pretty a place to tour as any you'll find anywhere. Unpaved mountain roads in a T are hog heaven! I just wish you weren't quite so far away for a one-day tour.