Mast Yard Rail Trail

• 3-star trail
• 2.4 miles each way
• Medium difficulty | Elevation nominal
• Merrimack Region | Hopkinton & Concord NH
Driving Directions

The long straight rail trail through Mast Yard State Forest.

Part of the former Concord to Claremont line, and due to be a section of the Concord to Lake Sunapee Rail Trail this section of the line located on the boundary of Hopkinton and Concord is a two-and-a-half mile stretch of trail through the quiet woodlands of Mast Yard State Forest.

Access is only available at the East end of the trail by the Horse Hill Road trailhead. The trail heads West across a long bailey bridge spanning the Contoocook River thanks to its use of the old railroad bridge piers. Then it's under a wide power line corridoor followed by a straight shot towards Rattlesnake Hill. The trail curves around the hill before reaching Penacook Road where there is no sign of a continuing route at this time.

This grassy and compacted gravel trail is recommended for mountain bikes and rugged hybrid bicycles, although theres nothing wrong with tackling the route by foot of course. Elevation change is minimal, and we found a few large muddy puddles at the West end of the trail that we powered through. Motorized travel is not allowed in the Mast Yard State Forest.

The NH Heroes River Crossing spanning the Contoocook.

The little folding bike we use to power along trails.

The neighboring riverside trail is a charming little single track trail which can be easily incorporated to make a much better looping route than the otherwise straight out-and-back. Check out the Riverside Loop on our Mast Yard State Forest trail review. We found it to be fun non-technical mountain bike route, with a couple of small hills that we walked our bikes up. Note that the riverside trail can be difficult to find from the West side thanks to a mess of logging trails.

Trailspotting will be publishing more trails on the Concord to Lake Sunapee Rail Trail soon. Check out the organization's website for more on how to access other trails along this route, and how to help them with their vision of connecting Concord with Lake Sunapee.

Some large puddles at the West end of the trail.

Rail trail, No access, Connecting trail, Live rail, Road biking, Sidebar, Fullscreen Map.

Mast Yard Rail trail (2.4 mi) - AllTrails | Directions
• Trail Links: Concord-Lake Sunapee Rail Trail
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