The Maine Appalachian Trail is a tough, tough place to hike. There are lots of mountains and mud and rocks and roots, but the weather is just so unpredictable and nasty!
I got a taste of that (again) when I backpacked from Stratton to Rangely for 4 nights and 3 days, last week. This is a very tough section of the trail with a lot of above treeline exposure and steep climbs up North and South Crocker, Spaulding Mountain, The Horn and Saddleback Mountains.
I’d hoped to go even farther than Rangeley on this hike and finish all of the remaining 79 miles of the AT I have in Maine, but I got off the trail after 32 miles due to violent thunderstorms, hail, high winds, rain, and a possible tornado. Being a section hiker, I had a hard deadline (my wife’s birthday) to finish this hike by and there was no way I was going to make it with a 2 day bad weather delay. That’s basically what it boiled down too.
Rangeley turned out to be a good town – basically the only town – to get off the trail and get a ride back to my car down in Grafton Notch, something that only happened because of a little trail magic.
Section Hike: Stratton to Rangeley on the Maine Appalachian Trail | Section Hikers Backpacking Blog.
The Maine Appalachian Trail Club (MATC) is an all volunteer, nonprofit corporation that was organized on June 18, 1935, to assume responsibility for the management, maintenance and protection of the Appalachian Trail (AT) in Maine. Except for its limited role in Baxter State Park, the MATC is responsible for all Trail and Trail structure design, construction, and maintenance, for monitoring activities in the AT corridor, and for basic public information and education regarding the Trail in Maine. The MATC is not a hiking or outing club. It exists solely for the protection and perpetuation of the AT. The MATC is not affiliated with nor is it a part of the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC). The MATC and the AMC are two separate organizations, although both are involved with protection and maintenance of the AT.
Home | Maine Appalachian Trail Club.
Geraldine Largay was reported missing on July 24th. She was thru hiking the Appalachian Trail and within days of the end of her incredible journey. Dozens of people, including the Maine Warden Service and search dogs, have combed the woods for miles only to come back empty handed. Geraldine is 66 years of age, from Tennessee, and seemingly vanished without any clues. With winter approaching, and traces of her nowhere to be found, the search for Geraldine has been scaled back. Outdoor expert, and Outersports colleague, Bill Brock joined up with a Master Maine Guide Bill and decided to do something about it. Mr. Brock had met with Geraldine Largay on the Appalachian trail just two days before her disappearance, near Caribou Pond, as they headed in opposite directions. During that time the rain was falling heavy and the creek crossing was moving fast.
A theory emerged that might take the search in a different direction than previously thought. Due to the heavy rain, it was possible that the missing hiker had attempted to cross a rushing creek and may have been swept downstream. This previously had seemed unlikely as the creek is normally very easy to cross. The above photo shows the creek crossing where Mr. Brock believes she may have fallen in.
Working with the Maine Warden Service; Master Maine Guide, who goes by the name “Wild Bill”, and Bill Brock organized a quick search party with Jinger Olinselot. The party was provided with Merino Wool base layers and socks, a Hennessy Hammock, and other outdoor gear from Outersports to aid in their search. In less than 24 hours the team uncovered possible evidence of the missing hiker. The find was immediately reported to the Maine Warden Service for further investigation.
With the search for Geraldine Largay still underway, let it serve as a stark reminder to keep safety first while in the outdoors. Our hearts and thoughts go out to her friends and family still waiting for closure, as well as the hard working individuals still looking for her.
Searching for a Missing Hiker / Outersports.com.
MOUNT DESERT ISLAND, Maine (AP) — Rangers at Arcadia National Park are issuing citations to trespassers while the park is closed because of the federal government shutdown.
The Portland Press Herald (http://bit.ly/199lBcc) reports that rangers issued seven citations over the weekend — four to people riding mopeds, two riding motorcycles and one group that had been camping. The fine is $75.
Chief Park Ranger Stewart West said the National Park Service normally has a staff of 206 people at the park but is down to 15 workers focused on security. All park roads are closed to traffic, along with hiking trails and carriage roads, and West said there have been reports of people vandalizing barricades and signs.
The park typically gets about 600,000 visitors in September and October.
Rangers fine trespassers in Acadia National Park – Destinations – Boston.com.
The Triple Crown of Hiking informally refers to the three major U.S. long distance hiking trails:
- Pacific Crest Trail – 2,654 miles (4,270 km) long, Washington, Oregon, and California between Mexico and Canada following the highest portion of the Sierra Nevada and Cascade Range.
- Appalachian Trail – 2,184 miles (3,515 km), between Springer Mountain in Georgia and Mount Katahdin in Maine.
- Continental Divide Trail – 3,100 miles (5,000 km), between Mexico and Canada following the Continental Divide along the Rocky Mountains and traversing Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico.
The total length of the three trails is about 7,900 miles (12,700 km); vertical gain is more than 1,000,000 feet (300,000 m) (190 miles). A total of 22 states are visited if the three trails are completed The American Long Distance Hiking Association – West (ALDA-WEST) is the only organization that recognizes this hiking feat. At the ALDHA-West Gathering, held each fall, the Triple Crown honorees are recognized and awarded plaques noting their achievement. As of October 2011, 155 hikers have been designated Triple Crowners. 
via Triple Crown of Hiking – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.