BEECH HILL STATE FOREST
Beech Hill State Forest is a captivating haven of dense foliage and majestic beech trees, offering a serene escape into nature's embrace. Spread across acres of undulating hillsides, this enchanting forest presents a picturesque landscape with its vibrant greenery, rocky outcrops, and meandering trails. A paradise for outdoor enthusiasts, Beech Hill is the perfect destination for hikers, bikers, and nature lovers, as it provides a plethora of well-marked paths and diverse ecosystems to explore. With its tranquil atmosphere, breathtaking views, and a symphony of birdsong, this state forest is an idyllic retreat that beckons visitors to immerse themselves in the unmatched beauty of New Hampshire's natural wonders.
The land that now comprises Beech Hill State Forest was originally settled by early European colonists in the 17th century. As was common during that period, the forested land was used for timber harvesting, farming, and grazing livestock.
During the 19th century, the forested area became increasingly important for its timber resources, supplying materials for ships, houses, and various industries. Logging was a major economic activity, and the vast majority of the original forest was cleared.
In the early 20th century, New Hampshire recognized the importance of preserving natural resources, and the idea of creating state forests gained traction. In 1909, the state purchased the first parcel of land that would become Beech Hill State Forest. Additional lands were acquired in subsequent years, expanding the forest's size and protecting it from further development.
Throughout the 20th century, Beech Hill State Forest was managed for multiple purposes, including timber production, wildlife conservation, and public recreation. Sustainable forest management practices were introduced to maintain a healthy ecosystem and ensure continuous timber resources.
In addition to its natural values, Beech Hill State Forest is also home to an observation tower known as the Fire Tower. It was constructed in the 1930s as part of the fire lookout system, helping detect and combat forest fires. The tower offers panoramic views of the surrounding area and has become a popular attraction for hikers and nature enthusiasts.