Client Name: Kara Hunter
Business Name: Hub North
Business Website:
Industry: hospitality
Location: Gorham, NH
SBDC Advisor's Name: Kyla Brustin

hub north client story

In the White Mountains, businesses are often born and built around a lifestyle, and that’s exactly how Hub North in Gorham, owned by Kara and Jason Hunter, came to be.  

In their own words, Kara and Jason are “just a couple of dorks who love to ride bikes and ski and play outside.” So, it’s no surprise that when they traveled in New Zealand years ago, staying in “backpacker” style accommodations they describe as “somewhere between bed and breakfast and hostel,” an idea was sparked.

Years later, the outdoors- loving, mountain biking enthusiasts, who had moved back to the Whites to ride the trails and work as carpenters, found themselves drawn to a former Girl Scout camp that they frequently rode through. Kara remembers thinking, “We can't really imagine living anywhere besides a place like this.” At the time, they hadn’t considered it a space to run a business, yet its layout as a former lodge didn’t make sense for it to serve simply as a residence.  

So, they found a way to bring the experience they loved so much in New Zealand here to NH not only for others to enjoy, but for them to be able to live a life they envisioned for themselves.  

Hub North first opened in the summer of 2017. The one-of-a-kind property, which includes a lodge and glamping, has been thoughtfully designed and renovated “to support your adventurous spirit.”  Folks can opt to stay in the lodge or enjoy a glamping experience in one of Hub North’s yurts or canvas bell tents, all with real beds, full kitchen, glam shower and more.  And no matter where you choose to lay your head, adventure is right outside the door.  

The Hub North guests visit today didn’t just materialize. The Girl Scout camp wasn’t even for sale at the time Jason and Kara got the idea to buy it. However, that didn’t stop Jason from making a call to the Girl Scouts to make their interest known.  And, while it didn’t happen right away, years later, opportunity knocked for Jason and Kara. Though the property was available, obstacles remained. They weren’t in a position then to get a commercial mortgage and it seemed as though the idea may not come to fruition. But some friends would not let them give up. They believed so much that this was the path for Jason and Kara, that they loaned them the money they needed to attain a private mortgage and purchase the property. 

Kara shares she originally connected with NH SBDC for help with human resources. She soon found though that other guidance was also valuable from her NH SBDC Business Advisor Kyla Brustin. “Assistance from my advisor has come mainly in the form of financial advice,” says Kara. “With her guidance I have restructured my rate schedule and raised my rates, which I expect to afford us more cash flow in the coming year.” 

hub north

Not only does the couple run Hub North, they have also become partners in another venture, Big Day Brewing in Gorham. Through hard work and perseverance, both businesses are growing. Kara shares, “Working with Kyla has given me the confidence to restructure my rates.” Kara also appreciates Kyla’s enthusiasm and willingness to help her with other things she’s done and is planning.

Kara has lots of plans for the near future. She just purchased a vintage camper to renovate for an additional accommodation at Hub North, and a driveway renovation, barn renovation, and improvements to the outside space for lodge guests are all in the works. 

Kara says,

“Kyla’s always offering that she can help me find funding for projects. It is nice to have someone who can see your business from the outside, advise accordingly and be willing to track down answers to your questions.”

As for the future of Hub North, Kara says, “we are intentionally on a slow growth trajectory, and see definitive growth every year. I expect that to continue, and we still have many projects in the master plan which will slowly scale us up to a new level.”