The “North Country” of New Hampshire generally refers to the area of the state that is north of the Notches (the mountain passes in the White Mountains that separate the area from the rest of the state). Many would have you believe that there is nothing worthwhile in this part of the state other than great hiking and skiing. No good jobs. No decent schools. No reliable internet. Many seem to believe that with mountains separating the area from the rest of the state, it is an isolated place with a struggling economy. A place where no one would voluntarily choose to live, and the only people who live there are locals whose families have lived in the area for generations and are now stuck. Those are all myths.
The North Country of New Hampshire is a stunningly beautiful region. There are people who have lived here for generations and there are people who are drawn to the area’s many charms and move here from all over. There are a wide variety of educational and economic opportunities around the region, and good schools and good jobs certainly exist here.
The region is not a monolithic entity. From my little corner of the North Country (the Littleton area), I am an hour from Berlin and an hour and a half south of Pittsburg. Each part of the North Country has something to offer and its own unique identity. (This site focuses on the Littleton area because that is where I live and the area with which I am most familiar). Isolation can be found in parts of the North Country for those who want it. However, it is not inherent in living up here.
This region is not for everyone, no region is. However, there are some people who are drawn to this area, as if the Notches have a magnetic pull. Unfortunately, many who might naturally be drawn to the area are dissuaded by the many myths swirling around. I certainly was, and I am so glad that I learned enough to see through the myths before we put down permanent roots in a different part of the state.
After seeing these myths constantly repeated to people considering the area, I was frustrated and felt compelled to counter those myths. I decided to refocus my blog on showcasing the amazing area where I live and what life is really like here. I wrote the Myths of the North Country series in an attempt to address and correct some of the frequent misconceptions about this area. I only feel qualified to address the Littleton area at length and so that is the focus of my writing. However, I can assure you that the North Country is a very livable place and there are people happily living in every corner of the region.
*Myths of the North Country series is temporarily paused. I have a more posts to write, but need to take a break from this series for a little bit.
Here you can find links to each installment of the series:
3. No Jobs?
5. What About the Schools? – coming soon
6. Frozen Wasteland Without Internet? – coming soon