Frankenstein Trestle

Hart’s Location, New Hampshire
The Frankenstein Trestle, one of the most beautiful spots in New Hampshire, is a testament to both natural beauty and human ingenuity.
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About This Location

Nestled in the heart of Crawford Notch State Park, within the breathtaking White Mountains of New Hampshire, lies the Frankenstein Trestle—an enchanting and historic landmark that graces the landscape with its unique charm and rich history.

The Frankenstein Trestle, often considered one of the most beautiful spots in New Hampshire, is a testament to both natural beauty and human ingenuity. This picturesque trestle takes its name from Godfrey Frankenstein, a gifted German-born painter who made Crawford Notch his home during the 1800s and was inspired by the scenic beauty of the region in his artistic endeavors.

The trestle’s story begins in 1867 when the Portland & Ogdensburg Railroad Company undertook the construction of the railway tracks and the trestle itself. This ambitious project was a significant achievement during the 19th century, connecting remote areas with the rest of the country. In 1888, the railway was deeded to the Maine Central Railroad, which operated on these tracks for nearly a century. The Frankenstein Trestle, as we know it today, was constructed in 1893, replacing the original wrought iron trestle built in 1875. Over the years, it underwent reinforcement in 1930 and 1950 to accommodate heavier train loads.

While the railway that once crossed the trestle has since been abandoned, the Frankenstein Trestle remains a beloved and iconic feature of Crawford Notch. It has become a must-visit destination for hikers and explorers venturing into this scenic wilderness.

One of the most popular ways to experience the Frankenstein Trestle is by embarking on the 4.9-mile Arethusa Falls and Frankenstein Cliff Loop trail. This trail not only leads you to the trestle but also treats you to the splendid Arethusa Falls. This outdoor adventure offers a range of activities and is best enjoyed from March to October. If you’re accompanied by your four-legged friend, rest assured that dogs are welcome on this trail as long as they’re kept on a leash.

For those arriving by car, there are convenient parking options available. The Frankenstein Cliffs Trailhead offers a small parking lot that accommodates approximately a dozen cars. Additionally, there’s a larger parking area just a short distance away and also along Arethusa Falls Road, capable of holding around 50 vehicles.

For a truly unique experience, you can also catch a train excursion with the Conway Scenic Railroad Company, which traverses the Frankenstein Trestle. This memorable journey allows you to soak in the charm and history of this remarkable landmark from the comfort of a vintage railcar. Tickets and further details can be found at conwayscenic.com. If you’re not on the train, it also a joy to admire the train passing over the trestle. During the fall season, thousands of photographers attempt to capture the train passing over the trestle with the stunning foliage all around.

Whether you’re exploring the trestle on foot or savoring it from the window of a passing train, the Frankenstein Trestle in Crawford Notch State Park promises an unforgettable encounter with both nature’s beauty and the enduring legacy of human achievement.

Location

Address: Crawford Notch Road, Hart’s Location, New Hampshire
Place GPS Coordinates: 44.155464, -71.366262
Parking GPS Coordinates: 44.155464, -71.366262
Parking Notes: There is a small parking lot at the Frankenstein Cliffs Trailhead which can hold about a dozen cars. Additional parking can be found a few hundred yards away just off Crawford Notch Road. This parking lot is far larger. It can hold about 50 cars.

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