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Squam Lake Canoe Camping

08/12/2022 Region: New England Activity Type: Kayaking/Canoeing Place: Holderness, NH

Hi All,

I will be booking a site on Squam Lake this upcoming summer after a two year hiatus. 

Bookings don't open until late February, so I don't know the exact dates or site yet, but I plan to reserve for a Thursday through Sunday for an active and relaxing, high summer weekend on the lake.  Please stay tuned... Rich

Following is the write-up from 2018:

Join us for a summer weekend of camping, canoeing, swimming, campfires and camaraderie on Squam Lake in Holderness, NH.   We had a blast in 2016 and have again reserved Bowman Island # 4 for 12 people.  Bowman Island is a 23-acre island located across a narrow channel from Moon Island. There is a dock and small beach at the northwest end of the island and a dock right near our site at the southeast side of the island.

Our spacious site is set-off from the others on the island.   Each site has a fire ring, no grate and nearby composting toilet. 

This trip requires previous paddling or kayaking experience and the physical ability to paddle with gear and provisions. 

On Saturday we will tour the lake by canoe visiting scenic, historic and swimming spots.  

For our trip report and pictures from 2016 please go to

The Squam Lakes Association rents canoes and kayaks to the public at the SLA Resource Center on Route 3 in Holderness, NH.   Participants should contact others to partner for shared canoe rentals, tents and other shared gear.  Boat reservations in advance are suggested.  Anyone planning to kayak should be aware of limitations of space for overnight camping gear.

Information can be found at

Shared costs for the site will be $25 / person for Friday through Sunday and must be remitted to trip leader by May 1 to confirm a spot.   No refunds after May 1 unless someone takes your spot.  Details for the payment will follow by email.  Canoe rental is not included.

We are required to use the site’s 3 wooden, raised platforms to prevent damage to the ground, so we will try to coordinate tents.   

Suggested Shared Gear: 

  • 3 season tent + ground cloth
  • Tarp
  • Camp stove & fuel
  • Cookware
  • Pot holder
  • Water containers
  • Water Filter

Other Gear:

  • Dry bags or heavy plastic trash bags
  • Sleeping bag / sleeping pad
  • Bowl / plate / mug
  • Spork or spoon /  knife and fork
  • Water bottles
  • Sunglasses
  • Scrub pads
  • Straps / bungee cords
  • Camp chair
  • Flashlight /head lamp
  • Summer appropriate, synthetic or wool (fast drying) base layers plus insulation and wind/water proof layers for mixing and matching.
  • Camp shoes, water shoes
  • Bathing suit
  • Toiletries, sunsreen, wide brimmed hat, 10 + essentials, etc.
  • Camp food, festive beverages and Saturday trip lunch


JPHiker Jan 25, 2022 at 8:41 AM

I would be interested in doing this, of course dependent on the dates.

richlisbonct Jan 25, 2022 at 11:31 AM

I'd be interested in sharing a canoe with another camper if I can locate someone down here in Connecticut I'll ask them to sign up to or if you find someone else just looking to share a canoe let me know and I'll just join whoever

jfriedman Jan 25, 2022 at 11:40 AM

Wonderful. Got kayak. Will paddle.

Gingues Jan 25, 2022 at 1:47 PM

I have a kayak and 10 person tent, could sleep 4 comfortably. Will fit 2 queen size mattresses. I sleep on a queen. Tent is large, so a canoe would be ideal to bring supplies over. I wouldn't be interested in this if it's going to be rainy though.

NashuaGuy Jan 25, 2022 at 6:48 PM

Definitely count me in! Sounds perfect!

Richardg Jan 25, 2022 at 9:09 PM

Gaston - It never rains in New Hampshire...

GlennCanoe Jan 25, 2022 at 10:54 PM

I'm indeed interested but it is date-dependent. Have kayak and spacious 2-person tent. May repair my canoe by then. Have space to share both the canoe and tent. Keep me posted!

Mark S Jan 26, 2022 at 9:38 AM

I am interested. It sounds like fun.

nhclimber03264 Jan 26, 2022 at 11:10 PM

Can we act out "On Golden Pond". Who wants to play Jane Fonda?

prguyonline Jan 27, 2022 at 9:51 AM

I would be interested. Date dependent.

Richardg Jan 27, 2022 at 9:40 PM

Hello “NH Climber”, Unfortunately, that’s a “No”. Camping is serious business, with little time for high drama or horseplay...

Gandalf Jan 28, 2022 at 7:42 AM

You mean nobody is going to try the Jane Fonda backflip on the dock! There could be some sucking face in the never know...LOL

Richardg Feb 23, 2022 at 6:51 PM

Guys, Unfortunately pre-reservations seem to have filled most of the best sites for the 2022 season. We will try again next year.

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