PORTSMOUTH, NEW HAMPSHIRE
-BIKE IT OR HIKE IT-
Last Updated: July 13, 2020
Length: Loop Trail (includes North Shoreline Trail); 2.3 mile Loop.
Difficulty: Easy. Flat paved & stone-dust trail.
To Start from Prescott Park ; From I-95 take exit 7 to Market St and head east into Portsmouth. After a mile turn left on Bow St, right on Chapel St and left on State St. Just past Marcy St (on your left is the Portsmouth Memorial) turn right through the brick gates to the Gate 3 parking lot. Metered parking along Marcy St if lot is full.
The Portsmouth Trails are a series on connected trails staring from Prescott Park/Memorial Bridge downtown east to Pierce Island and the North Shoreline Trail. I've created a bit of a Loop Trail to explore all the parks and sights. For more information visit; PIERCE ISLAND & PRESCOTT PARK .
Starting from the Gate 3 parking lot (Prescott Park); Exit the parking lot to State St and head left (wide shoulder/brick sidewalk). Travel underneath Route 1 Memorial Bridge to Harbor Walk Park on your right. Benches, informational signs and promenade overlooking the Piscataqua River and bridge. To your left the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge crosses the river. Then continue up what is now Daniel St to two sets of crosswalks that will take you over to the Portsmouth Memorial. Then cross Dutton Ave and State St to Marcy St creating a Loop from the Gate 3 parking lot. Travel on-road along Marcy St (BIKE SHARROWS) past Prescott Park on your left. Beautiful gardens and brick buildings. Come to a tall flagpole (Liberty Pole) and travel left into Prescott Park along a wide paved blvd. Informational signs along this route. Trial Gardens along your right. Come to the Piscataqua River and a circle intersection at 0.4 miles. Head right along the paved trail to Peirce Island Bridge (low traffic) and turn left across the bridge (Caution narrow sidewalk) to Peirce Island. Pick up a sidewalk on your left next to the Peirce Island/Four Tree Island parking lot. Pass by the 1st stone-dust trail on your left before coming to a second trail at the end of a parking lot. Head left along the North Shoreline Trail past a small playground and pool on your right. Come to an intersection and head right to another intersection. Across the river is the Portsmouth Navel Shipyard.
Note; When I visited in July 2020 the trail straight past the pool was closed. It travels alongside the river, past side trails to a cliff overlook after 0.3 miles (0.6 mile round trip). If you follow these side trails right to Peirce Island Rd you can access the South End Loop Trail (no bikes). Return to the intersection.
From the intersection travel around the Red Pine stand to the point then back along the opposite side over a small wooden bridge back to the sidewalk along the 1st stone-dust trail. Head right to the entrance for the Peirce Island/Four Tree Island parking lot. Travel through the parking lot to an iron gate. Here a stone-dust trail follows a causeway out to Four Tree Island. Here a brick path loops around the island which has picnic pavilions, gazebos, water fountain and restrooms. Return to Peirce Island Rd and head right back over the bridge to the paved trail and the circle intersection. Continue straight alongside the river to a ramp up past the Sheafe Warehouse and continue right. Pass by two fishing piers and continue alongside the river returning to the Gate 3 parking lot after a 2.3 mile Loop.
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BIKE IT OR HIKE IT