Destination of the Week

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-22-2003
Destination of the Week
Mon, 07-14-2003 - 6:19pm
This DOTW has a special place in my heart. I spent this weekend there, as I've spent many others. Baxter State Park is located in thenorthern part of Maine. Within it's borders

is Mt. Katahdin, the highest point in the state at 5267 feet, and famous for being the

end of the Appalachian Trail. There are 8 campgrounds in the park and an additional 2 that

are only for backpackers.

Baxter State Park, a wilderness area of 202,064 acres, was a gift to the State of Maine by former Gov. Percival P. Baxter. In 1930 he made his first land purchase of 5,960 acres which included Katahdin. This land was given to the State in 1931. By resolve of the Maine Legislature in 1933, the area was officially designated as Baxter State Park and the summit of Katahdin was named "Baxter Peak" in his honor. His final gift of 7,764 acres was made in 1962.

The Park is a paradise for the naturalist, mountain climber, hiker, and photographer. Many orchids, ferns, alpine and other plants grow in abundance. Geologists will find interest in Baxter's rhyolite, Katahdin granite and many fossil types. Bird watchers, wildlife enthusiasts and winter trackers will find a variety of wildlife to pursue. Gov. Baxter expressed the spirit of the Park:

"Man is born to Die, His Works are Short-lived Buildings Crumble, Monuments Decay, Wealth Vanishes But Katahdin in All Its Glory Forever Shall Remain the Mountain of the People of Maine".

There are 46 mountain peaks and ridges, 18 of which exceed an elevation of 3,000 feet, the highest being Baxter Peak at 5,267 feet. The park is intersected by about 175 miles of trails. Maps may be obtained at Campgrounds, Millinocket Headquarters, or the Visitor Center at Togue Pond. For all you hikers out there, I cannot attest to the degree if difficulty in these trails. But I can say for certain that you'll be surrounded by natural beauty on any of them.

Trail Route Miles

Appalachian Trail Park line to Katahdin Stream 4.95

Abol Trail Abol to Thoreau Spring 2.76

Hunt Trail Katahdin Stream to Baxter Peak 5.19

The Owl Trail Katahdin Stream to the Owl 3.00

O.J.I. Trail Perimeter road to O.J.I 2.71

Sentinel Mt. Trail Kidney Pond to Sentinel Mt. 2.60

Doubletop Mt. Trail Nesowadnehunk to Kidney Pond 7.80

Marston Trail Slide Dam to North Brother 4.24

Webster Lake Trail Black Brook to Webster Lake 7.20

Freezeout Trail Webster Lake to Second Lake Matagamon 9.0

Freezeout Trail Second Lake Matagamon to Trout Brook Farm 6.10

Trout Brook Mt. Trail Trout Brook Farm to Trout Brook Mt. 1.30

Horse Mt. Trail Perimeter road to Horse Mt. Tower 1.35

Fowler Pond Trail Perimeter road to Fowler Pond 2.00

Middle Fowler Trail So. Branch Pond to Middle Fowler Pond 4.10

So. Branch Falls Trail So. Branch Pond road to the falls 0.43

So. Branch Mt. Trail So. Branch Pond to Pogy Notch Trail via Black Cat. Mt. 4 06

North Traveler Trail So. Branch Pond to North Traveler 2.55

Center Ridge Trail Pogy Notch Trail to the Traveler 1.75

Pogy Notch Trail So. Branch Pond to the Traveler 9.61

Lookout Trail Russell Pond Campground to The Lookout Ledge 1.25

Grand Falls Trail Russell Pond to Grand Falls via Inscription Rock 2.75

Wassataquoik Lake Trail Russell Pond to Wassataquoik Lake 2.70

Wassataquoik Lake Trail Wassataquoik Lake to Nesowadnehunk Field 8.30

Russell Pond Trail Russell Pond to Roaring Brook 7.00

Howe (north)Peaks Trail Russell Pond to Hamlin Peak 6.85

Northwest Basin Trail Russell Pond to The Saddle 7.96

So. Turner Mt. Trail Roaring Brook to S. Turner Mt. via Sandy Stream Pond 2.00

Whidden Pond Trail Sandy Stream Pond to Whidden Pond 0.90

Helon Taylor Trail Roaring Brook to Pamola 3.16

Knife Edge Trail Pamola to Baxter Peak 1.10

Chimney Pond Trail Roaring Brook to Chimney Pond 3.30

Dudley Trail Chimney Pond to Pamola 1.25

Cathedral Trail Chimney Pond to Baxter Peak 1.70

Saddle Trail Chimney Pond to Baxter Peak 2.17

Hamlin Ridge Trail Chimney Pond to Hamlin Peak 1.95

North Basin Trail Chimney Pond Trail to No. Basin Ponds 1.25

To protect the wilderness resource, the park limits access to parking lots/trailheads. Access is based on a first-come, first-served basis when parking lots fill up, that area is closed. Early arrival is recommended for day-use.


There are ten campgrounds located at Roaring Brook, Abol, Katahdin Stream, Nesowadnehunk, South Branch Pond Trout Brook Farm, Chimney Pond, Russell Pond, Daicey Pond (cabins only) and Kidney Pond (cabins only).

The campgrounds have facilities which may vary including lean-tos, tenting space, bunkhouses, fireplaces and picnic tables. Narrow roads prohibit travel with large trailers. Russell Pond and Chimney Pond can be reached only by foot trails. Canoes are available for rent at South Branch Pond, Russell Pond, Trout Brook Farm, Daicey Pond and Kidney Pond. Campers and visitors supply their own food and cooking utensils. Gasoline is not available in the Park, Although it is available at private campgrounds on the way to the Park.

Water in Baxter State park is untreated and generally unprotected. Before drinking or cooking, it is strongly recommended that water be disinfected. This can be done a number of ways, such as boiling for a minimum of five minutes or the application of seven drops of iodine (from your first aid kit) per gallon of water. Bleach (Clorox) may be substituted for iodine. If you use a filter be sure pore size is 3 microns or smaller.

Baxter State Park

64 Balsam Drive

Millinocket, Me. 04462

(207) 723-5140

Baxter State Park - Baxter State Park is in the heart of Maine, with Mt. Katahdin as it's crown jewel. Hiking, climbing and other recreational activities await you in Baxter State Park.

Winter Rules - The Baxter State Park Authority has developed a set of procedures and guidelines for winter use in an effort to assist Park users in planning trips to Baxter State Park, to promote safety of all persons using the Park and to protect the Baxter State Park Authority and its staff from unnecessary search and rescue efforts.

Day Use Regulations - No special permission is required for day use below tree line. However, in the interest of public safety we strongly discourage people from traveling alone in the winter; party size of at least 2 is strongly recommended, 3 or 4 is better! Day users are requested to check in and out at Park gates, volunteer registration points or Park Headquarters, by phone if more convenient. This is for the safety of users in the event of an accident or emergency and helps keep statistics on Park use.

For more information and pages of other great stuff go to:

And then go to Baxter! You'll love it!



iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 07-15-2003 - 11:16am
Thanks, Ruth :)

The photo gallery at the site was wonderful!


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 07-15-2003 - 11:46am
Cool! It sounds like a neat place!


Jo, Community Leader for
Childfree by Choice on Health http://

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2003
Wed, 07-16-2003 - 2:16pm
Yippee!!! My DD and I will be hking here in late August! I am all psyched to go!