My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Sunday, September 25, 2016

My Favorite Hike in Baxter State Park

September 14, 2016

On Tuesday, I was tired, so  just drove down to look at the southern part of the park,  before going to Millinocket for  breakfast and a little shopping.   I spent most of the afternoon in my hammock, before doing a little local hike to see a pretty section of a creek near my campground.

Sunrise forecast the cloudy day

So I was back to full energy by Wednesday. Since I planned to hike very close to my camp, I even slept in until 6:00 AM and had a leisurely breakfast before setting out to drive to the trailhead for Trout Creek Mountain Trail. Since the day was cloudy, I waited until mid morning to start my hike, hoping for a break in the clouds. The weather stayed pretty dreary, but the light was great for the little things I found.

This trail offers lots of views of Matagamon  Lake and East Branch of the Penobscot  River and must be fantastic in early morning light. It was the consistently prettiest trail of any I hiked during my visit. It has a lot of deciduous trees which are just about to gain their fall colors, so it will just get prettier during the next month or so.

The trail started by  going uphill,  and had lots of pretty easy sections in between more uphill sections. It didn't have many rock falls, and only a few places that required high step-ups. And there were seven places with great vistas, including a place that went along the north edge of the mountain for about a tenth of a mile.

This is definitely a must-hike trail if you are visiting the north part of Baxter State Park. And you could even camp  right next to it in Trout Creek Farm Campground and not have to drive to the trailhead. This is about the first thing you find after arriving at the north entrance to Baxter State Park.

I had hoped for hammock time when I got back to camp, but the rain started almost as soon as I arrived.  So I read a book in my tent and enjoyed the rain. 

The few trees that are turning really popped in the dim light

Such a lovely trail

I love the lichen and moss "paintings" on the boulders

On a clear day you can see forever - but not today

The trail goes up and over this outcropping

Someone had enjoyed building cairns up here

These are some kind of wood asters

The trail is winding up this outcropping

View from another overlook

A very strange mushroom

I love these lichens - they are very soft, although they look hard

I love the closeup view of them as well

Views of this lake set me dreaming of a paddling/camping trip

These mountains are across the East Fork of the Penobscot River

I thought the sky portended a clearing but it didn't happen

The granite in this area was pink

These mushrooms were barely larger than matchsticks

I spent several minutes getting a portrait of this young toad - just larger than my thumbnail

This random piece of birchbark looked like someone had carved it into a rose

This was the most perfectly colored maple leaf

My favorite pair of mushrooms

I found several of these strange fungi in an area about a yard in diameter

When this publishes, I'll be playing with a friend in Acadia National Park. So I'll have a few more blogs from Maine while I start my migration south.  I'm stopped at a Library a few miles from the park. You can see I'm all ready to grab my friend from her plane tomorrow and start playing. 

Heading out