Despite the ongoing ebb and flow of the Coronavirus, many IAT/SIA chapters are reporting fair to large numbers of hikers on their particular section of trail.Continue reading
Trail updates from Newfoundland, Spain and MaineContinue reading
The historic Deasey Mountain Fire Lookout is unusual in many ways. First, it is a “ground cab” lookout meaning that, rather than perched on top of a 20- or 30-foot metal tower, it sits directly on the ground. The cab is anchored in place by four heavy steel cables attached to large eyebolts set in the bare granite knob of the mountain’s summit.
The cab offers a spectacular 360-degree view that includes Katahdin and other peaks in Baxter State Park, five miles to the west, as well as Mars Hill on the Canadian border fifty miles to the northeast. In essence, a hiker can see the entire route of the IAT in Maine from the Deasey Cab.
The cab is also unusual in that it’s the original 8 x 8-foot building constructed in 1929 by the Maine Forest Service. The cab has been lovingly maintained for 15 years by members of the Maine Chapter of the IAT, who have replaced siding, doors and windows, and have re-roofed the building twice. In 2016, a group of IAT’ers, led by Earl Raymond, installed a replica of the original alidade that was used by wardens to pinpoint the location of forest fires from the summit. Read more on that here.
It’s a wonderful experience to spend the night in the cab, especially in clear weather with a full moon. Do be aware, though, the nearest reliable water supply is a half mile away down the mountain!
As happens every spring, a dedicated group of Maine IAT volunteers spent a few days on the trail in the Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument clearing winter blowdowns (aka wind-falls or windthrows), checking lean-tos and re-stocking toilet paper in the privies.Continue reading
The 24th gathering for the annual meeting of the Maine Chapter of the International Appalachian Trail began at the Patten Lumberman’s Museum at 3:00 pm on Thursday, May 3rd.Continue reading
On August 24th in 2016, an 87,563-acre plot of land in the heart of Maine was designated the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument by former President Barack Obama. Although met with controversy on all sides, the area had yet been explored on a large scale. In September 2017, a team of four Maine-born photographers set out on a three-part journey through Katahdin Woods and Waters to investigate.Continue reading
On April 10, 2017, IAT Maine honored former Maine Governor Joe Brennan for helping launch the International Appalachian Trail on Earth Day 1993.Continue reading
At their meeting in December, the Baxter State Park Authority closed access to Katahdin Lake along the route from the east while the park evaluates the potential impacts of the new Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument.Continue reading
Highlighted by a blaze of fall colors, Board Members of the Maine Chapter of the International Appalachian Trail (MaineIAT) traveled along the Mohawk Trail (Rt.2) to Williams College, Williamstown, Mass. to attend the 3-day 35th Annual Gathering of the Appalachian Long Distance Hikers Association (ALDHA).Continue reading
The International Appalachian Trail continues to draw hikers to northern Maine, offering a tour through varied landscapes and a connection to Canada and beyond.
This summer, the Maine chapter is aiming to reroute 52 miles of the trail that currently is set along roadways in southern Aroostook County. About 65 miles of trail are currently set along a road shoulder.
The roughly 13 miles along Grand Lake Road from Matagamon to Shin Pond is actually “good road walking,” with wide shoulders and few trucks, and that will remain a part of the route, Hudson said. For the other 52 miles, the chapter is working with landowners to reroute the trail from Shin Pond to Monticello, aiming to move the trail to old woods roads and all-terrain vehicle trails. A section they’ve secured will run along the south side of Mount Chase, and offer a link to a trail up the 2,440-foot mountain of the same name.
“The idea is in the long-run to get rid of the bulk of the road walking, and to use a combination of woods roads and paths,” including multi-use ATV trails, said Hudson, the former president of the Chewonki Foundation in Wiscasset.
For more on the story, go to the Bangor Daily News – Maine Outdoors website.
The 21st annual meeting of the Maine Chapter of the International Appalachian Trail was held between Thursday, May 14th and Saturday, May 16th at Shin Pond Village. A dozen members gathered at the Lumberman’s Museum in Patten at 3:00 p.m. Thursday afternoon for a tour of the facility with Executive Director Rhonda Brophy, before heading for refreshments and dinner at Shin Pond Village. The IAT in Nova Scotia has a new advocate in Claire MacNeil, who traveled all the way from Cape Breton to attend the annual meeting in Maine.
Julie King provided the Thursday evening program, a photographic review of “Side Trails along the IAT”, which captured the highlights of her hike on the IAT in Maine and Canada with fellow long distance hiker Ed Talone during the summer and fall of 2013. In addition to exploring trails along the east coast of New Brunswick from Campbellton to the foot of the Confederation Bridge near Sackville, Julie and Ed added the Magdalene Islands and the Cabot Trail on Cape Breton to their walk on the IAT. A ferry from PEI took them to the Magdalene Islands, where spectacular beaches and low rolling hills grace the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Back on the IAT in Nova Scotia, Julie and Ed decided to add the Cabot Trail to their hike. They met Claire near the start of the trail as they walked right by her house. It is safe to say that this chance and serendipitous encounter bodes well for the IAT in Canada. Claire has become a strong champion for the IAT within Hike Nova Scotia. Once in Newfoundland, Julie and Ed flip-flopped from Port au Basque to St. Anthony in order to walk south with the onset of fall weather. However, a few miles into their walk south, they decided to take a short ferry to the Labrador coast where they walked the Pioneer Footpath on Appalachian terrane between L’Anse au Clair and Pinware to Red Bay.
At the end of her fine presentation, Dick Anderson invited Ed to join Julie at the front of the room and presented them both with IAT Maine’s first Trailblazer Awards to commemorate their walk on the IAT in North America.
The crowd swelled on Saturday morning to hear a full program of presentations, including an update of activities and work in Baxter State Park by Park Naturalist Jean Hoekwater. An effort to re-route the Abol Trail from the bottom of the slide to safer ground to the west and north will require an additional trail crew, and will be funded in part through a special contribution made by a long-time friend of the park. Susan Adams of Katahdin Woods & Waters and Karin Tilberg of the Forest Society of Maine also provided updates of their work. As the impact of mill closures and declining populations is felt in the Millinocket and Greenville areas, both communities are exploring the role that the forests, rivers and trails can play in the future. In their own ways, Katahdin Woods & Waters and the Forest Society of Maine are proving to be great partners.
For more on the story, go to the IAT Maine Chapter website.