Abandoned Elbow Pond Community – A few years ago, I documented the abandoned Elbow Pond cabin community in Woodstock, New Hampshire. This small cabin community was in the area immediately surrounding Elbow Pond. And it shouldn't be confused with the nineteenth and early twentieth-century farming settlements or logging railroad that were once in the area.
Elbow Pond is at the end of Elbow Pond Road, a seasonal dirt road off Route 118. It is a mid-sized pond with a maximum depth of around 32 feet. And the species of fish found in the pond include chain pickerel, yellow perch, and smallmouth bass.
The area around the pond is undeveloped, and when standing on the boat launch, no homes can be seen on the hillside, or in the immediate area (above). And though the pond is relatively close to Route 118, the road noise is minimal. To gain full appreciation of this secluded pond, you have to turn to the forest for the story.
In the 1970s, before the area was added to the National Forest, private cabins were located on Elbow Pond. The area was also part of the Gordon Pond Logging Railroad, which was in operation from 1907-1916. The remnants of the cabins can still be found. And for the railroad buffs, during times of low water, the old railroad bed can be seen in the backside of the pond. Beaver activity has flooded the area since the early 1900s, and the railroad bed is now underwater.
Today, not one cabin remains around the pond, and only the ones who venture around the pond will find evidence of a forgotten time that was not so long ago. It is not your typical historical settlement in the White Mountains, but it allows us to see how the landscape of Elbow Pond once looked.
One of the more interesting pieces is the Servel Gas Refrigerator above. These types of refrigerators were used in hunting cabins, cottages, and remote areas where there was no electricity. Because of its location, it may or may not have been used in one of the old cabins. It could have been dumped here.
Elbow Pond is your classic picturesque White Mountains pond that attracts fisherman, hikers, kayakers, and photographers. I can appreciate the fact that the area is now part of the National Forest, and it is not built up with cabins. When looking for solitude in the White Mountains, Elbow Pond is the kind place I seek out. And it has the bonus of some interesting history.
To license any of the above images for usage in publications, click on the image. And you can view more images of the abandoned side of Elbow Pond here.
Happy image making…