Mount Chocorua shines on America the Beautiful quarter

February 2nd, 2013 by Heather

    Mount Chocorua shines on America the Beautiful quarter

    The jagged, distinctive 3,500-foot Mount Chocorua “is reputedly one of the most frequently photographed mountains in the world,” says the “AMC White Mountain Guide” – and now the popular peak has its own coin.

    The jagged, distinctive 3,500-foot Mount Chocorua “is reputedly one of the most frequently photographed mountains in the world,” says the “AMC White Mountain Guide” – and now the popular peak has                                                                        its own coin.

    Or, more precisely, the White Mountain National Forest has its own coin – the 16th 25-cent piece to be issued in the America the Beautiful Quarters Program – and a classic image of Mount Chocorua was chosen to represent the national forest on that coin.

    Mount Chocorua is certainly among New Hampshire’s more popular destinations for hikers. No fewer than 10 trails ascend its slopes and the peak’s rocky cone affords expansive views in all directions. With the aid of binoculars and a clear day, summit-sitters can catch a glimpse of Mount Wachusett, about 106 miles to the south in Massachusetts. To the west, Vermont can be seen. Close by, to the north, on Chocorua’s ridgeline, are South, Middle and North Sister, and 20-plus miles off, Mt. Washington and the Presidential Range dominate the view.

    It’s a place to tote a copy of Brent E. Scudder’s “Scudder’s White Mountain Viewing Guide,” which describes the scenes from the peak of Chocorua and several other mountains and offers line drawings of those views.

    “Those who know New Hampshire well would conclude that the state’s most photographed feature is the rock profile known as the Old Man of the Mountain. But the scene I describe appears on lamp shades in New Zealand and calendars in Germany. It is a picture of a steep granite prominence rising behind a lake. White birch covers the foreground. Travellers can find the spot by visiting the southern shore of Chocorua Lake,” the author writes. Indeed, the scene depicted on the new quarter was captured from that very location.

    The storied peak is also said to have been the model for the fictional Coruway Mountain in LeGrand Cannon Jr.’s, celebrated novel “Look to the Mountain.”

    Despite the relatively low altitude of the mountain, the ascent is a formidable undertaking, given the low elevation from which the approach begins. Most hikers should plan for three hours or more to reach the top, making a ’round trip hike an all-day affair. (Hikers should consult appropriate maps and guidebooks for details before hitting the trail.)

    In earlier days, trampers could have ascended to the Chocorua Peak House, a two-story hotel located just below the mountain’s peak, and spent the night. Built in the 1890s, the building was blown off the mountain in a violent storm in 1915. It was unoccupied at the time. In his “Vacation Tramps in New England Highlands,” author Allen Chamberlain notes the hotel “was restored in part the following year only to be again swept away in that winter’s storms.”

    Today, overnight visitors can opt for the open shelter or tent platform at Camp Penacook, off the popular Piper Trail, or the Jim Liberty Cabin a half-mile below the summit along the Liberty Trail. Details on use are available from the U.S. Forest Service by calling 447-5448 or 745-3816.

    In a posting announcing the new America the Beautiful quarter, the U.S. Mint calls the image of Mount Chocorua on the coin’s reverse “An iconic view of the White Mountain National Forest system lands.”

    “White Mountain National Forest, located in both New Hampshire and Maine, provides unique and strikingly beautiful landscapes and is one of America’s most visited national forests for its wide array of recreational opportunities and rich natural resources,” the site says.

    The America the Beautiful Quarters Program began in 2010 to celebrate national parks and other public lands and sites of national significance. The White Mountain National Forest quarter is the first to be issued in 2013.

    The U.S. Mint and the U.S. Forest Service invite the public to the coin’s ceremonial launch, to be held at Plymouth State University’s Hanaway Theatre at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 21.

    “We are honored to be included in the U.S. Mint’s America the Beautiful Quarters Program,” said White Mountain National Forest Supervisor Tom Wagner in a news release. “The White Mountain (National Forest) is a much loved part of the fabric of New England and we hope that the public will join us for the Feb. 21 celebration.”

    Rob Burbank is director of media and public affairs for the AMC in Pinkham Notch. His column appears monthly in the New Hampshire Sunday News.

    Special quarter celebrates special NH spot

    January 28th, 2013 by Michael

      New Hampshire Union Leader

      The new quarter features a view of Mount Chocorua.

      A birch-tree framed view of Mount Chocorua graces the backside of a quarter that the federal government started distributing Monday, one of 56 scenes featured in America the Beautiful quarters.

      The quarter commemorates the White Mountain National Forest, and is the second New England spot to land on the special quarters.

      “White Mountain National Forest is one of America’s most visited national forests,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack in prepared remarks. “We hope this latest recognition will inspire even more Americans to enjoy our nation’s many outdoor recreational opportunities while supporting local economic growth and job creation.”

      The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston started shipping the quarters on Monday, and the U.S. Mint made the coin available to collectors. An official kickoff is slated for Feb. 21 at Plymouth State University.

      The coin features a distant view of the 3,500-foot Chocorua (Choc-or-EW-a), the easternmost peak of the Sandwich Randge that is a favorite of hikers. Lake Chocorua is in the foreground.

      “That was something we thought really depicted the White Mountain National Forest,” said Forest spokesman Colleen Mainville. “This is years in the making. It takes a lot of time and effort.”

      Twenty coin designs are available so far, according to the U.S Mint website. A coin commemmorating Acadia National Park in Maine went into circulation last year.

      Mint spokesman Mike White said the White Mountain coin is still being minted, so he cannot say how many will be struck. Volume ranges from 44 million to 302 million, the high number celebrating Denali National Park in Alaska.

      “It has to do with how much the Fed is ordering,” he said of the production run.

      He said the Federal Reserve started filling orders from banks on Monday.

      “Generally, the financial institutions that has more transactions is more likely to have them,” he said.

      Mainville said preparations for the kickoff are underway and include participation by a local bank and school children. Enough collectors have expressed interest that the event was moved to Plymouth State University, she said. Invitations have been sent to Gov. Maggie Hassan and New Hampshire congressmen.

      Future releases involving New England scenes will be Block Island in Rhode Island, 2018; Lowell National Historic Park in Massachusetts, 2019; Weir Farm National Historic Site in Connecticut, 2020; Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller Historic Site in Vermont, 2020.


      Featured in Plymouth Magazine

      Example Image

      Atmospheric Rivers

      PSU Meteorology Students Integrated Skills Across Disciplines to Address Water Extremes in the West PLYMOUTH, N.H.—Undergraduate and graduate meteorology students are acquiring and applying new skills that will improve forecasting for extreme precipitation caused by atmospheric rivers (ARs). This research project reflects PSU’s move from a traditional academic model to Integrated Clusters, giving students the […]

      Example Image

      Building the Heart of The Health and Human Enrichment Cluster

      [su_slider source=”media: 12965,12966,12842,12844″ limit=”4″ link=”image” width=”550″ height=”320″ responsive=”no” title=”no” pages=”no”] PSU’s visionary approach to education is tearing down academic silos and creating seven interdisciplinary academic clusters that promote an integrated educational experience. The Integrated Cluster approach prepares students to be 21st century marketplace standouts and builds real-world collaborations between the University, industry, and communities. At […]

      Example Image

      Seeing Further: Into the North Country

        The Lancaster Project, an integrated cluster initiative that uses a multidisciplinary approach, focuses on bringing more life to the small business community on Main Street, particularly the historical Lancaster National Bank building, in Lancaster, New Hampshire. The project capitalizes on the varied knowledge of 60 students from 10 different academic majors. Collaborative groups work […]