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Maine Hiking Trails
This site is designed to provide quick access to informative Maine hiking websites. Hiking enthusiasts like you have posted excellent Maine hiking and bakcpacking pages on free web servers -- only to be ignored by search engines. The purpose of this site is to provide a way to find these personal hiking pages, and make your research easier.
- Acadia National Park -- General Awesome Acadia site by Larry & Michele Bermel of
Chappaqua, New York. Lots of info, suggestions, experiences, photos...just a great resource.
- Acadia National Park -- The Precipice short article with some photos that gives you a pretty good idea what you're in for, on the AcadiaMagic.com website.
- Acadia National Park -- General Trail Guide speaking of John William Uhler, here's a quick link to his Acadia Hiking page, which has a nice "fridge grid" type thing listing all key trails, distances, difficulty, access points, and brief comments. Good laundry list of trails.
- Acadia National Park -- The Beehive here's another climb report, a short read but entertaining and enlightening, with some photos that will give you a good idea of what the Beehive is all about. On the Natural Born Hikers site.
- Appalachian Trail site by Appalachian Trail Conference (ATC) part of their "state-by-state guide" features comprehensive information. Absolute "must" site for Maine AT slackpackers or thru-hikers.
- Appalachian Trail Outstanding site from the Maine Appalachian Trail Club. Another "must click" if you're AT bound.
- Appalachian Trail/International This is the official site for the International Appalachian Trail, a group that seeks to build and maintain a foot trail extending between Mt. Katahdin, Maine, Mt. Carleton, New Brunswick, Mt. Jacques Cartier, Québec, and Cap Gaspé, Québec. Strong site include trail info, hiking narratives, access hints, more.
- Cobscook Bay Cobscook Bay is as far down east as you can get -- we're talking Lubec, Machias, that sort of thing. There's a terrific state park at Cobscook Bay, as well as some lands protected by the Nature Conservancy. That's where this link will take you.
- Eastern Trail Imagine walking - or biking - mostly through off-road woodland trails from Strawberry Banke in Portsmouth, New Hampshire to Bug Light Park on Casco Bay in South Portland. This is the vision of the Eastern Trail Alliance (ETA), whose members seek to reopen the first railroad corridor into Maine as a recreational greenway.
- General Maine Chapter - Appalachian Mountain Club The Maine Chapter of the AMC was founded in 1956 as the Portland chapter. Today, the Chapter has more than 2800 members and is active throughout the state of Maine. It advocates strong conservation efforts within Maine and offers its members a full range of programs and activities. Site features informative trail reports, links -- emphasis on Maine's section of the White Mountains. Good site.
- General Intro to the most popular hiking areas in Maine, including Katahdin, Camden Hills, Acadia, etc. Basic info. Site by MaineOutdoors.com.
- General/Island Trails Maine Island Trail Association (MITA) manages recreational use of about 100 public and private islands along more than 300 miles of the Maine coast.
- Grafton Loop Trail new trail in the Grafton Notch/Mahoosuc Range area, where previously only the AT offered a route for hikers. The Grafton Loop Trail is a much wilder, less-traveled offering. Incredible vistas await...unless you're slacking the AT, I'd suggest you spend your time on this trail, if only to avoid the crowds. Outstanding site, with trail info, photos, history, downloadable maps, etc. from the Maine Appalachian Trail Club.
- Katahdin -- Abol Trail very good description and overview, gear list, etc. with complete photos for the steep scramble known as the Abol Trail. Excellent page on the SummitPost.org site.
- Katahdin excellent photo journal of a windy, rainy July climb on the eastern route via Knife Edge. A must click for anyone who might underestimate what this peak can throw at you on a summer day. Site by Al Sayers has quite a few well done climb photo journals.
- Katahdin here's an excellent narrative, complete with great photos, a few trail specs, via the Chimney Pond route. From the Natural Born Hikers.
- Lakeland Trail Planned trail to link Lincoln, Maine with McAdam, New Brunswick.
- Moosehead Lake Region Nice descriptions of numerous popular hikes, including Chairback Mountain, Mount Kineo, Moxie Falls, Barren Mountain, Big Moose Mountain, B-52, the incredible Gulf Hagas, and quite a few others.
- Northern Maine some real wilderness here. Page of links by James A. Walker, Northern Maine Web Publishing.
- Saco Bay Saco Bay Trails seeks to acquire permanent public access to recreational greenways in the Saco Bay area. Page links to trail descriptions & maps for 14 area trails. Good site.
- Tumbledown Mountain all the details you'll need are on this page, with plenty of photos, directions, trail descriptions...excellent Tumbledown info on the SummitPost.org site.
No phone, no pool, no pets...
It never fails that when I am clamboring over cliffs and enjoying the thundering surf in Acadia, or Twin Lights, or almost anywhere, I happen upon something that abruptly ends my joyous pursuits. I'm referring to the rare but irritating "NO TRESPASSING BEYOND THIS POINT" sign. I don't get it. Anything as beautiful as the coast of Maine should not have been for sale, or at least should never be closed to the public. Imagine if an individual "owned" the Grand Canyon or Old Faithful. One would hope they would want to share it rather than shut everyone else out. The majority, of course, understand their sacred trust and do not mind if people walk along their "private" chunk of coast. (Knowing the New England mentality, they probably accept this in return for the pleasure of scolding people).
Just as we have public pathways to enjoy the full extent of our mountain ranges, we ought to have a complete coastal right-of-way. A kind of Appalachian Trail at sea level. Entry points would need to be somewhat limited, as the family members/homeowners I know should not be subject to having grungy hikers tramping across their lawns. But the coast itself should be public land.
It is of considerable solace that the few miserable Mainers who posted the signs in the first place are dead by now. Nobody remembers them or cares, except their equally miserable offspring, who perpetuate the crime. Someday they too will be dead, and the universe will no longer swirl around them. Eventually, perhaps 200 years from now, the last old spinster will die alone, leaving a rotting Volvo and a sagging home on the coast. With taxes overdue and no heirs to claim it, the home and precious coastline will revert to the public trust where children (and more importantly, myself) will then be free to pick wild blueberries, chase lobsters and collect sea glass. One can only hope.
The above is an excerpt from an article I wrote in late 1999. To read more about the land of lobsters, redemption centahs, and frumpy swimwear, please click here.
Ah, my great dream of a coastal pathway...perhaps someday. In the meantime, to give you some direction on the hiking opportunities that really are available, I'm inclined to recommend
Maine Mountain Guide: The Hiking Trails of Maine Featuring Baxter State Park by the Appalachian Mountain Club, since you definitely need a guidebook if you are headed that way. Love 'em or hate 'em, the AMC puts out the best guidebooks.
If you're mountaineering, but not specifically Baxter, I prefer Cloe Chunn's
50 Hikes in the Maine Mountains: Day Hikes and Overnights from the Rangeley Lakes to Baxter State Park. It's also fun reading, just by itself...can't say that for the AMC book.
As for the "Down East" hiker, I really like
50 Hikes in Coastal and Southern Maine: From the Mahoosuc Range to Mount Desert Island by John Gibson. It's part of the ubiquitous 50 Hikes Series. Photos are dark. Directions sometimes miss. It's a fabulous book, though. Every Mainer should have one of these, really.
And the intro "No phone, no pool, no pets..." is of course, Roger Miller's King of the Road. Just two slackpacker trivia points for that one. Now, if you knew that Roger Miller beat out the Beatles for a Grammy Award with that song, add four more points.
-- Rick Bolger
Please click here for the Slackpacker web site
Want to add YOUR Maine hiking page? It's free, it's easy, and there are no strings attached. Please click the "Submit a Site" button, above left, for instructions and complete information.
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