Of course the White Mountains were just the starting point (well, really Mount Royal in Montreal, Canada, but you can't see that far). One hundred eighty million years ago there was a hot spot under what would one day become eastern New Hampshire. In geology, a hot spot is a thin stream of Earth's heated innards bubbling up towards the surface over a long period of time. When the hot spot underlies a continent the result is violent, explosive eruptions at the surface. These eruptions and the super-heated magma below the surface built the White Mountains over twelve million years.
The hot spot never moved, and it never stopped bubbling. The good news for the residents of North Conway, is that New Hampshire did. When Pangaea split apart, opening the Atlantic Ocean, North America pushed westward, and Africa pushed (relatively) eastward. By one hundred twelve million years the continent had moved to the point that the hot spot underlay Denmark, Maine, building Pleasant Mountain. By one hundred eight million the Earth was bubbling in Brownfield, forming Burnt Meadow Mountain.
trail of underwater mountains (called seamounts) stretching from the continental shelf to the mid-ocean ridge. At that point, the seamounts seem to sputter out, that is until they emerged on the opposite side of the ridge, where as recently as 10 million years ago they appeared to be approaching Africa and the Canary Islands (or really Africa was approaching the hot spot).
Of course we can't see all of that from Falmouth, but we can see a few million years of continental progress, before the horizon shades our view. On a clear day, the White Mountains are visible and Pleasant and Burnt Meadow Mountain can be seen as well. The picture provides not just beautiful scenery, but a window into the tectonic motion that occurs over millions of years.
"Science Reference: Hotspot (geology)." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily. Web. 19 June 2013. <http://www.sciencedaily.com/articles/h/hotspot_(geology).htm>.
Girty, G. H. "Chapter 2: Volcanoes." Perilous Earth: Understanding Processes Behind Natural Disasters. Department of Geological Sciences, San Diego State University, June 2009. Web. 1 June 2013.<http://www.geology.sdsu.edu/visualgeology/naturaldisasters/Chapters/Chapter2Volcanoes.pdf>.
Watling, Les. "Geological Origin of the New England Seamount Chain." NOAA Ocean Explorer Podcast RSS. Web. 19 June 2013 <http://oceanexplorer.noaa.gov/explorations/03mountains/background/geology/geology.html>.
Zartman, R. E. "Geochronology of Some Alkalic Rock Provinces in Eastern and Central United States." Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences 5.1 (1977): 257-86.