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Portland Head Light, Fort Williams State Park
Portland Head Light. Copyright © Eric Holsinger. Image used with permission.

The Appalachian Mountains extend through Maine. It’s western borders have rugged terrain and there are long sandy beaches on the Southern coast. In contrast, the Northern coast (known locally as Downeast) is mainly rocky promontories, peninsulas and an actual fjord. Maine has 3,478 miles of Coastline. In addition, the coast contains more than 3,000 islands and thousands of intertidal ledges.

There are 10 peaks over 4,000 feet with the highest being Baxter Peak (5,276 ft.) on Mount Katahdin in Baxter State Park. Katahdin is also the Northern most terminus of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.

For more information, check out the Southern Maine Outdoor Locations.

  • Free Fishing Day, Maine (2015) On May 30 – 31, 2015, any person in Maine (except those whose license has been suspended or revoked) may fish without a license. Of course, all other laws and regulations apply on these days. More information: Maine Free Family Fishing Days (Maine DIF&W website)
  • New connecting trail opens in Acadia on National Trails Day — Hancock — Bangor Daily News — BDN Maine New connecting trail opens in Acadia on National Trails Day — Hancock — Bangor Daily News — BDN Maine.
  • Archipelago Dip Great article about sea kayaking off of the coast of Maine, from Maine Magazine, with a lovely photo gallery. Archipelago Dip.
  • $5M fish ladder opens on Presumpscot River | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram $5M fish ladder opens on Presumpscot River | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram.
  • The Secret Garden for Hiking in Kennebunkport Maine I didn’t know about this “secret garden”, has anyone else been there? The Secret Garden for Hiking in Kennebunkport Maine.
  • Volunteer anglers sought for Maine brook trout survey project | Sun Journal Like to fish for Trout? Like to fish the backcountry? Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife needs you! Maine IFW biologists also conducted official surveys on 33 ponds that volunteers from 2011 identified as brook trout ponds, and confirmed brook trout presence in 26 of these ponds. This year, volunteer anglers are needed to survey 307 ...
  • 8 Winter Snow Tubing Parks in Maine 9 locations around Maine for enjoying Snow Tubing in the Winter.
  • Bethel, Maine, offers outdoor adventures all year round – Lifestyle – The Boston Globe A good article on Bethel, Maine appeared in the Boston Globe Lifestyle section. There is information about where to stay, what to do during the day and after dark, and where to eat.   Bethel, Maine, offers outdoor adventures all year round – Lifestyle – The Boston Globe.
  • Clifford Park, Biddeford Maine The Clifford Park is an urban trail system located near downtown Biddeford. Hiking or walking the length of the black trail loop is just over 1.5 miles. There is an extensive number of cross-trails and care should be taken to follow the correct path. When I visit, I tend to take the black loop for a ...
  • Kennebunk Plains Since 1989, the Kennebunk plains have been co-owned by The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and The Nature Conservancy. This is a 1,600 acre site comprised mostly of open grasslands with about 600 acres of woodlands. It is home to 90% of the worlds population of Northern Blazing Star. The Kennebunk Plains turn ...
  • Whale seen at Acadia’s Sand Beach Visitors to Sand Beach in Acadia National Park were surprised to find a beached whale.
  • Ragged Mountain Fat Tire Festival Mid Coast NEMBA will be hosting the Ragged Mountain Fat Tire Festival this weekend. Adrenaline fueled down hill, lift rides at the snow bowl camping and fat tire fun to be had over two days. There will be a film screening at 8pm of Pedal Driven and Life Cycles at the Camden Opera House. Pedal-Driven: ...
  • Find happiness in Maine USA Today posted an article where Paul Theroux shares his 10 favorite places to find happiness. Right at the front of the list: Maine. About Maine, he says, quite rightly, “It has one of the most dramatic coasts. The great trip is to just go up Route 1, ideally late spring or early fall. You can ...
  • Cougar caught on game camera in Jefferson, ME? Stephen Bailey, a resident of Jefferson, ME, believes he captured an image of a mountain lion with his game camera. Biologist says it’s just a deer.
  • Cadillac Mountain/South Ridge Trail/Mt. Desert Island, ME Miles of open ledges and picturesque views await you when you beat the crowds and take the journey by foot along the South Ridge Trail to the summit of Cadillac Mountain. Acadia National Park, located on Mt. Desert Island, is one of the most visited National Parks in the United States.  Many of the park’s points ...
  • Fort McClary State Historic Site, Kittery, ME Fort McClary is a Maine State Park with a historic defensive fortification at Kittery Point near Kittery Maine. The site still contains several remaining buildings, most prominent of these is the hexagonal blockhouse.
  • Caribou Mountain, WMNF, Evans Notch, ME The White Mountains on the Maine side are the lesser known and less traveled hikes of the White Mountain National Forest.  However, if it’s a quality hike without the crowds, this gem is your ticket.  Located in the Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness, Caribou offers a 2840 ft elevation with an open summit allowing you an unobstructed ...
  • Ferry Beach State Park, Saco, ME Ferry Beach State Park is a recreational gem in the Saco area. It is a well maintained state park with wide, flat, groomed trails through oak and pine forest and a tupelo swamp, around a pond and with access to the beach.
  • Evans Notch, Pequawket Trail (RT 113) Scenic Byway Take a drive through scenic Evans Notch; a mountainous area in Western Maine between Fryeburg and Gilead within the White Mountain National Forest and Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness.
  • Sylvan Trail, Saco ME The Sylvan Trail is a 1.6 mile loop hike in Saco, ME. The trail passes through deciduous and evergreen forest – there are lots of oak trees – and skirts the edge of a farm field.
  • How to find peak Maine autumn foliage Foliage in Maine is difficult to predict, but usually reaches peak sometime around the last week of September through the first weeks of October. Here are some tips for finding that autumn color in Maine.
  • Mackworth Island Mackworth Island perimeter hiking trail is highly accessible and offers excellent views of Casco Bay’s islands and Portland’s Eastern Promenade. This is an easy hiking trail suitable for children, strollers and leashed dogs.
  • East Point Sanctuary, Biddeford ME Making use of ice cleats for a Winter nature walk, while tracking the trip with a new app, EveryTrail, on my iPhone 3Gs.
  • Acadia discouraging cairn builders Acadia National Park is discouraging visitors from building rock cairns. Acadia is strongly promoting the “Leave No Trace” message with all it’s various meaning related to fragile plants, animals, visitor trash and even rocks.
  • Whitewater Thrills in Maine As a New England state, Maine offers a rugged coastline with lots of beauty. This and the internal waterways make grabbing a kayak and exploring the waterways a surreal experience.
  • The Maine Coastline A trip to Maine would not be complete without a journey along the eastern coastline. With close to 500 miles of Atlantic coast to explore, Maine offers many interesting and beautiful places worth discovering.
  • New Paddling Blog Launched By Northern Forest Canoe Trail A new blog for the Northern Forest Canoe Trail will share news, events and insights along the 740-mile water trail. The canoeing and kayaking trail runs across the largest watersheds in the Northeastern from the Adirondack Park in New York to Vermont, southern Quebec, Canada; New Hampshire and northwestern Maine.
  • Discover Acadia National Park in the Fall By Cliff Calderwood Acadia National Park is the only national park in New England and was the first one established east of the Mississippi. In the summer months it attracts visitors like a magnet. But by fall quiet space is easier to find especially if you’re prepared to camp and hike in the park. It’s a special ...
  • Robinson Woods Cape Elizabeth, ME Many people follow Shore Road in Cape Elizabeth to see the ocean and visit Fort Williams State Park. However, there is a small gem of preserved land with an easy trail and many vernal pools along this road and only a short distance from the better known state park. Robinson Woods, part of ...
  • Tumbledown Mountain Weld, ME Tumbledown Mountain found in Weld, ME, located just outside of Mt. Blue State Park, approximately 2 hours North of Portland, has become on of the state’s most popular hikes. While not one of the tallest mountains in the region, this little mountain, with an elevation of 3068′, packs a punch, but rewards you with ...
  • Explore Maine by Bike sponsored by the MDOT Ever wonder where you can ride your bike and take in the sights around Maine? Well, look no further. The State of Maine has put 25 suggested bike routes on it’s website. Many of the routes have options for short, medium and long rides. For instance, the Freeport/Brunswick tour has options ...
  • Back Cove/Back Bay Portland, ME Scenic Back Cove trail in Portland is one of the area’s most used shared paths. The 3.5 mile loop around the cove passes Payson Park and connects to the Eastern Prom Trail which leads to the Old Port area. Accessible from many streets in the area, the path is often used by people ...
  • Bradbury Mountain Pownal, ME Bradbury Mountain has something for all ages and is one of the most popular parks in close to Freeport, ME; less than 30 miles from Portland, ME.
  • Falmouth Nature Preserve Falmouth, ME The second of our Portland Trails hikes, The Falmouth Nature Preserve is a little difficult to find, but once you get there, you will be surprised at what a treasure it is. Located on the Mill Creek flood plain, the paths lead you through many kinds of terrain. 2.5 miles; Open dawn to dusk; no ...
  • Mount Agamenticus York, ME Mt. Agamenticus located in York, Maine is a great hike without the long drive and still being close to many amenities. Mt. Ag is located very close to the tourist areas of York and Ogunquit, ME. It would be easy to spend time at the mountain and then hit the beach and have ...
  • Presumpscot River Preserve Portland, ME We recently purchased the Portland Trails Map and have decided to hit up all the trials this Summer. The first being the Presumpscot River Preserve. I was intrigued by the “rough water”, history and conservation that is going on here. Smelt Hill Dam is an area of the trail that is currently ...
  • Green Streets Day June 27th Portland, ME Got a Bike? Commute another way the last Friday of each month. Portland Green Streets has started an initiative to have people use alternative forms of commuting and is encouraging local businesses to help spread the word by offering items for raffle, discounts and freebies. Each time you participate you can send ...
  • Mt Tir’em Waterford, ME Mount Tir’em is a short hike in the Western Maine town of Waterford; brisk hike to beautiful views of rolling green hills and beautiful blue lakes.
  • Paddlers Film Festival Join Maine Island Trail Association at the Frontier Cafe, Cinema, and Gallery on Thursday May 8th, from 6-9pm for a series of films featuring the paddling lifestyle.
  • Great Maine Bike Swap Expands to Two Locations The Great Maine Bike Swap will return to Portland and expand to Orono this year. The swap, which brings together people buying and selling used bicycles and gear, will take place at the University of Southern Maine’s Sullivan gym on the Portland campus on April 27 and at the University of Maine’s new Student Recreation ...
  • It’s Time To Get Ready For Spring Fishing in Maine Here comes March! This is usually the time when I wrap up my ice fishing. It’s time to think about getting ready for spring fishing. Do you need new line? Maybe you need a new pole or reel? The sales usually start during this month for all of the gear you need. Maybe you would ...
  • Fall Foliage Scenic Drive – Lakes and Leaves Maine Maine is one of the most heavily forested states in the nation, containing over 17 million acres of natural beauty, hikes, and magnificent summer and fall foliage scenic drives.
  • Fall Foliage in New England Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island are the states for fall foliage in New England. A fall leaf tour can include them all.
  • Fall Foliage Scenic Drives in New England – Introduction Fall foliage in New England really begins in August. The shortening daylight hours trigger the deciduous trees to begin the process of shedding their leaves. It happens all around North America, and all around the world. But in New England it’s special.
  • The History of Fishing in Maine As a result of Maine’s unique mix of freshwater and saltwater fishing locations, countless fishing communities are continuing to thrive on the back of keen enthusiasts and professional anglers alike.
  • Alewife Fishladder, Damariscotta Mills   According to the literature, “Damariscotta” is derived from the Native American word meaning “place of an abundance of alewives” or “river of many fish”. If you visit the fishladder, originally constructed in 1807, you will get the idea pretty quickly. Usually beginning in May and lasting about a month, thousands and thousands of Alewives crowd ...
  • Cougar, Catamount, Puma, Panther, Mountain Lion? In Maine? The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seriously examining the the status of the Eastern Mountain Lion.
  • Katahdin Lake added to Baxter State Park Katahdin Lake, and 4,000 acres, will be permanently preserved wilderness as part of Baxter State Park in Maine.
  • Baxter State Park Baxter State Park is a 204,733 acre wilderness area in the heart of Maine. There are about 186 miles of trails and 46 peaks in the park. Baxter Peak on Mt. Katahdin is the highest at 5,276 feet. 18 others are over 3000 feet. Katahdin is also the Northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail. Access is limited. ...
  • Saco River may get additional fishways FPL Energy may install 4 new fishways on the Saco River as part of its relicensing agreement with the Maine and federal agencies.
  • Maine Ski Resorts offer Discount Deals on Ski & Stay Packages and Lift Tickets Some of best ski resorts in Maine are offering discounts on ski & stay packages and life ticket prices. Check out these deals before planning your next Winter trip.
  • Toms of Maine donates 38 acre “Mousam River Wildlife Sanctuary” Toms of Maine donated a 38 acre “Mousam River Wildlife Sanctuary” to the Kennebunk Land Trust.
  • Cape says “no” to Fort Williams park pass/fee Cape Elizabeth votes against admissions fee for Fort Williams Park and Portland Head Light.
  • The Nature Conservancy and Plum Creek come to an agreement in Maine The Nature Conservancy, the Forest Society of Maine and Appalachian Mountain Club have signed a Purchase and Sale Agreement with Plum Creek Timber Company to permanently preserve more than 340,000 acres in Maine’s North Woods, near Moosehead Lake.
  • Nature Conservancy Receives 1,910-acre parcel in Phippsburg, Maine An anonymous donor has given The Nature Conservancy 1,910 acres in the midcoast town of Phippsburg. One of the largest unprotected parcels on the Maine coast, the land’s diverse topography ranges from hemlock gorges and pitch pine ridges to over four miles of shoreline on the New Meadows River.
  • Androscoggin River Watershed Council’s Source to Sea Trek-a-Thon The Source to Sea Trek-a-Thon is 4 days of paddling on the Androscoggin River, over 4 weekends. This is the first year that it is a “pledge event.” Participants are asked to raise money in support of 1) the event itself, and 2) the educational outreach programs.
  • Saco River Pedal/Paddle Tour The lower Saco River, in Saco, Maine is perfect for a Pedal/Paddle Tour. The lower Saco River is tidal from the dam at Saco Island, between Saco and Biddeford, down to Camp Ellis. The roads near the ocean in Saco, Camp Ellis, Ocean Park and Old Orchard can make a nice coastal bike route. ...
  • Kayaking the Scarborough River, Scarborough Marsh A short, slow, morning kayak down the Scarborough River through Scarborough Marsh.
  • Scarborough Marsh Scarborough Marsh is 3,000 acres of Tidal Estuary belonging to the State of Maine under the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, with a visitor center and trails operated by the Maine Audubon Society. It is a great location for spotting migrating ducks, shorebirds and songbirds. A new bridge has been built over the gas ...
  • Ferry Beach Ferry Beach, also known as Western Beach, is a town beach accessible from Black Point Road in Scarborough; not to be confused with nearby Ferry Beach State Park in Saco. The beach is separated from Pine Point Beach by the Scarborough River which flows through the Scarborough Marsh Wildlife Management Area and is joined by ...
  • Back Cove Back Cove Trail is one of Portland’s most popular spots for walking, running, biking, dog walking (on a leash), and in the winter, cross-country skiing. The official start line is located across from the Shop N Save located on Prebble Street extension, however, most of the trail is easily accessible from almost any spot along the ...
  • East End Osprey In July, I visited the Osprey family and was privileged to see the entire family hanging on top of and around the train trestle. There were two immature Osprey in the nest both looking healthy with one parent at their side. Down below, another parent kept a watchful eye on the gulls and pigeons that ...

 

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Image used with permission, Copyright Eric Holsinger.

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