A few facts about the cruise boat Mount Washington

For 149 years, a New Hampshire vacation tradition has been the big cruise boat that plies scenic Lake Winnipesauke in the mountains in the middle of the state.

Here’s the dope.

  1. It started out as a paddle steamer in 1872, built by the Boston & Maine Railroad Company to transport passengers and cargo around the lake.
  2. It soon became a tourist attraction, drawing 60,000 passengers a year, a figure that continues.
  3. That vessel burned in 1939 while tied up at dock and a fire spread from a train station.
  4. The current incarnation of the M/S Mount Washington is 230-feet long and has four decks. Maximum capacity is 1,250.
  5. The current vessel started out in 1888 as an iron-hulled sidewheeler on Lake Champlain. In 1940, it was cut apart in Vermont and shipped by rail to Lakeport, New Hampshire, where the hull was reassembled in a new twin-screw vessel design. It was powered by two steam engines (since replaced by diesel) taken from an ocean-going yacht.
  6. There are three dance floors. It seats 500 for dining or serves one thousand for a reception. Two-hour dinner-dance cruises are popular.
  7. It has five ports of call – Weirs Beach, Wolfeboro, Center Harbor, Meredith, and Alton.
  8. The M/S stands for motor ship.
  9. The views include the summer homes of many billionaires as well as mountains and at least 264 islands.
  10. The line also runs two smaller vessels, one of them a mail boat where the envelopes are actually sorted en route.

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