Outdoors & Nature

Beautiful Mount Bigelow

  • Straton

  • www.mainehuts.org

  • Bigelow Mountain Preserve was established by the people of Maine in a June 1976 referendum to stop plans to develop a ski resort. It consists of 33,000 acres of mountainside and shorefront. Its Range Trail runs some 12 miles west to east from Cranberry Peak (3,194 feet) to Little Bigelow (3,025 feet). In between are Avery Peak (4,088 feet), West Peak (the highest point in the range at 4,125 feet), South Horn (3,805 feet), and North Horn (3,792 feet).

    The most challenging peaks are Avery Peak and West Peak. These two pinacles or (horns) are equal except for Avery Peak being a bit lower. On Avery Peak the rock foundation of the abandoned fire tower still stands and the views are outstanding overlooking the fourth largest body of water and man-made reservoir, Flagstaff Lake. Cranberry’s distinctive feature is its bare ledges, and the Horns tower above little Horns Pond, stocked annually with some beautiful fish.

    There is a12-mile loop up the Fire Warden’s Trail from Stratton Brook Pond. It’s about 5 miles to West Peak via Avery Peak (a word of warning: the last 1.5-mile stretch below the Bigelow Col between Avery and West Peaks rises about 1,700 vertical feet, making it one of the tougher climbs in Maine), then it’s about 3 miles west to Horn’s Pond via both Horns, 2.5 miles down the Horns Pond Trail to reconnect with the Fire Warden’s Trail, and then 1.6 miles back to Stratton Brook Pond.

    The shortest and easiest way to Avery Peak is via the Safford Brook Trail from the north up through Safford Notch, around Old Man’s Head (with its view down the Carrabassett River), and along a bold section of ridge to the peak. This route covers some 4.2 miles each way. If there’s snow on the ground, opt for this route, as the scramble up the last mile over snow-covered rocks on the Fire Warden’s Trail can be very difficult.
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  • Recommendation

    Maine Outdoor Adventure Guide

    Unlike most guides, which focus on specific regions or specific activities, the Maine Outdoor Adventure Guide is a trip-oriented guide, with each entry focusing on a specific activity at a particular location.
    Buy
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Bigelow Mountain Preserve was established by the people of Maine in a June 1976 referendum to stop plans to develop a ski resort. It consists of 33,000 acres of mountainside and shorefront. Its Range Trail runs some 12 miles west to east from Cranberry Peak (3,194 feet) to Little Bigelow (3,025 feet). In between are Avery Peak (4,088 feet), West Peak (the highest point in the range at 4,125 feet), South Horn (3,805 feet), and North Horn (3,792 feet).

The most challenging peaks are Avery Peak and West Peak. These two pinacles or (horns) are equal except for Avery Peak being a bit lower. On Avery Peak the rock foundation of the abandoned fire tower still stands and the views are outstanding overlooking the fourth largest body of water and man-made reservoir, Flagstaff Lake. Cranberry’s distinctive feature is its bare ledges, and the Horns tower above little Horns Pond, stocked annually with some beautiful fish.

There is a12-mile loop up the Fire Warden’s Trail from Stratton Brook Pond. It’s about 5 miles to West Peak via Avery Peak (a word of warning: the last 1.5-mile stretch below the Bigelow Col between Avery and West Peaks rises about 1,700 vertical feet, making it one of the tougher climbs in Maine), then it’s about 3 miles west to Horn’s Pond via both Horns, 2.5 miles down the Horns Pond Trail to reconnect with the Fire Warden’s Trail, and then 1.6 miles back to Stratton Brook Pond.

The shortest and easiest way to Avery Peak is via the Safford Brook Trail from the north up through Safford Notch, around Old Man’s Head (with its view down the Carrabassett River), and along a bold section of ridge to the peak. This route covers some 4.2 miles each way. If there’s snow on the ground, opt for this route, as the scramble up the last mile over snow-covered rocks on the Fire Warden’s Trail can be very difficult.


 

Recommendation

Maine Outdoor Adventure Guide

Unlike most guides, which focus on specific regions or specific activities, the Maine Outdoor Adventure Guide is a trip-oriented guide, with each entry focusing on a specific activity at a particular location.

Buy

Back to Outdoors & Nature Back to home