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Maine Vacation NDR

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Maine Vacation NDR
Myself, my wife, and chocolate lab are traveling to a wedding in Paris, Maine the end of July. We'd love to explore the area after the wedding, but neither of us have been in that neck of the woods. We're not interested in checking the boxes for touristy locations. We both love out of the way spots with lots of nature and scenery. Hiking, biking, exploring. That being said we're pulling a 26' camper. I envision finding a place to park it and use it as base camp.

I imagine that time of the year reservations will have to be made in advance. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. Both for possible camp grounds and places to explore. Carl was extremely helpful as we made plans for Gulf Shores a few years ago. I'm sure the east coast gang will be able to steer us in the right direction. Thanks for your help.

Jim Bosanny
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
Jim:

Paris is in the middle of the southern part of the state and not quite in the mountains. You'd be in day trip range of Rangeley Maine or the White Mountains in New Hampshire. It's surrounded by big lakes, all of which have a lot of year round and summer home development around them. As you head north and west you get into more remote country. If you want to check out the Rangeley area--big lakes, the nation's best native brook trout rivers (though late July is getting late), moose, and a nice base with restaurants and such in Rangeley, surrounded by the big woods, I can highly reccommend Cupsuptic Campground on the shores of Cupsuptic Lake. http://www.cupsupticcampground.com/

If you want something more remote and right on the banks of Cupsuptic River (which stays cold so still has brook trout even in late summer, flyfishing only, like most of the rivers in the area), their remote sites are nice, but no services. Outhouse and dip your water from the stream.

Late July is prime time for being on the coast. Depending on how far you want to drive and what balance of culture (with summer crowds) vs. "get away from it" you want, there's 2500 miles of coast line, though you don't need to drive that far to get there. South of Portland is beaches--you can find campgrounds in Wells or Old Orchard, but book early that time of year and expect a crowd.

Portland is a "big city" by our standards with about 100,000 people. Maybe the best collection of restaurants in New England. My sister is a serious foodie who has been all over the world and says the three best meals she ever had were in Portland. Great art museum, lighthouses, parks on the beach not far away. Not sure about camping sites, but no shortage of hotels/motels. If you spend time in Portland, hop on the Casco Bay Lines ferries. Way cheaper than hiring a charter to get a tour of the bay.

North of Portland, Freeport is a shopping mecca with LL Bean and a pile of outlets. A few miles away it's much quieter on the coast. The campground at Wolfe Neck Farm is really nice: https://www.freeportcamping.com/campsites/ You're still only 30 minutes from Portland here.

A little further east, there is a great mix of beach and rocky shore. Two long peninsulas end at Popham Beach and Reid Beach, both of which are state parks. No camping at the parks, but you should be able to find RV campsites in both areas. This is striper fishing heaven on the Kennebec River in between the peninsulas, and late July is prime time. Night fishing off the beaches can be really good too.

Another 3=4 hours east on the coast and you are on the Maine/New Brunswick border. If you want to cross the border, Campobello Island in New Brunswick has some of the nicest parks I've ever been to, the east coast's largest tides, whale watching, reversing tidal rapids, and a slew of campsites. On the Maine side of the border is Cobscook Bay State Park, where some of the sites sit directly under eagle nests. No services for your RV, but a great spot. On a week night you might have it to yourself. That part of Maine is remote, beautiful, and dirt poor. Don't expect a lot of amenities, but definitely stop for pie at Helen's restaurant in East Machias on your way east. The Canadian side is a little more developed and wealthier.

Great local beer anywhere you go, especially the Portland area.

PM or post here with more on what you are looking for and I will be glad to help.

"At first blush I am tempted to conclude that a satisfactory hobby must be in large degree useless, inefficient, laborious, or irrelevant."
— Aldo Leopold
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
cobscook bay state park is a ways from where you are planning, but we spent several days in that area last year and it was great. I'm sure there are other options, but I would say you ahve to spend a few days at the coast, even if it is further to drive. I liked the area near Machias. We had the best fry I've had (other than one I did myself) at the Riverside Takeout (not River's Edge, which is nearby). This area is up near the border, near where Jeff was suggesting.
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
 Artsy area, norway, sweden. Poland springs headquarters. Rented a cabin in Norway on a lake. Lots to do, text CC.
LL Bean is a day trip. Kittery Trading post, like LL B, lots of guns, good food...
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
Jeff, hit most of the highlights.

In the Paris area there are areas to hike and hunt gem stones.

One other great area is the area north west of Millinocket. There you will find Baxter State Park, and the New National Monument. This area also offers the opportunity to fish for land locked salmon and whitewater rafting on the West Branch of the Penobscot.

Jeff and Tod, shared my second favorite State Park to camp at, but one you could get to with your camper.

If you find yourself here from 8-1 to 8-5 the Lobsterfest in Rockland attacks a lot of folks.

Maine offer plenty of opportunities to enjoy nature and enough scenery that those of us who live here can get immune to it.
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
We’ve had great camping trips along the Maine coast. Three campgrounds I like are Winslow Park and Campground, near Freeport (right on Casio Bay). Bass Harbor Campground near Acadia National Park (and Maine Maritime Museum). Gray’s Homestead Ocean Campground near Boothbay Harbor. Lots of things to do at or near each of them.


Great South Bay
West Sayville, N Y
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
My wife's family has a farm in Norway. Neat area, lots of old mines to hike up and explore. Garnets and tourmaline are common finds. North pond has awesome bass fishing ( no one really cares about them in Maine). White mountains aren't to far and a very worthwhile day trip

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I never know which is worse: the sorrow when you hit the bird, or the shame when you miss.
http://www.hillmandecoys.com
Mullica Hill NJ

Last edited by:

jode hillman: Mar 8, 2018, 7:20 PM
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
Jeff gave a pretty good rundown. I would have to give both Cupsuptic and Cobscook both thumbs up. Opposite sides of the state though and Maine does not have very straight east to west routes.

http://www.maine.gov/...etails.pl?park_id=15
http://www.cupsupticcampground.com/

Helen's is a definite if you are in the Machias area.
"Pass the Tradition Along"
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
A big thank you for the information. Just what I was looking for. Now I've got some home work to do and get planning.

I'm forever grateful to my dad Wis Boz for finding and introducing me to this site. It's given both he and I lots of friends and information.

I'll keep watching for any more "can't miss" spots out east. Thanks again.
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
 Some nice decoy museums on the way
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
Jode, Maine keeps getting invaded by people from away, so more and more people like bass.

Many good waters have been ruined by 5 gallon fisheries biologists. North Pond is now polluted with Pike, Good to feed he eagles nothing more.
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
David, yup!!!! There's a 42" northern that sits off my cousins dock at thier cabin on the pond. Shreds everything the kids throw at it. I pray an eagle kills it!!!!!

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I never know which is worse: the sorrow when you hit the bird, or the shame when you miss.
http://www.hillmandecoys.com
Mullica Hill NJ
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
If I catch any of those junk fish (Small Mouth, Large Mouth, or Pike) that do not belong in that body of water then I bank them or Ice them. My son went to a conservation camp in Virginia and they teased him when he told them about throwing smallies onto the bank.

Back on topic. Grafton Notch State Park is less than an hour from Paris and offers hikes ranging from leisurely to some of the toughest on the Appalachian Trail. There are also multiple scenic waterfalls and a swimming areas.

While I have no interest or experience there is also the Oxford Casino close by.
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
I'm trying to picture David at Oxford Casino. LOL. Like him, I've never been. Have enough ways to waste my money.

Grafton Notch is a great spot. In the same area is Evans Notch, mostly in NH, which also has great scenery and hiking. Not far away across the border are Pinkham Notch and Crawford Notch in NH on either side of Mt. Washington. You can drive to the top of Mt. Washington, or take the Cog Railway, or take a van tour if you don't want to beat up your own vehicle's brakes.

"At first blush I am tempted to conclude that a satisfactory hobby must be in large degree useless, inefficient, laborious, or irrelevant."
— Aldo Leopold
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
David Allen wrote:
If I catch any of those junk fish (Small Mouth, Large Mouth, or Pike) that do not belong in that body of water then I bank them or Ice them. My son went to a conservation camp in Virginia and they teased him when he told them about throwing smallies onto the bank.

Back on topic. Grafton Notch State Park is less than an hour from Paris and offers hikes ranging from leisurely to some of the toughest on the Appalachian Trail. There are also multiple scenic waterfalls and a swimming areas.

While I have no interest or experience there is also the Oxford Casino close by.


Ugh, my wife's family was not fond of the casino. But Grafton is awesome, one of my favorite spota

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I never know which is worse: the sorrow when you hit the bird, or the shame when you miss.
http://www.hillmandecoys.com
Mullica Hill NJ
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
My in-laws have a house in Bar Harbor and we go every summer to visit. Bar Harbor itself is very touristy, however Acadia National Park is right there and a MUST see! I make it a point to visit the national park every time even though I’ve seen it so many times. Along with a drive to the top of Cadillac Mountain for a view of the ocean. Beautiful pink granite mountains. You look down at your feet and realize that you’re standing on something that could be a countertop in someone’s kitchen.

Lots of camp grounds around the area too and people bringing campers is very common there.
Southern New Jersey
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
Thanks Dan. It's a location I have on my radar with some good looking camp grounds in the vicinity. Appreciate the information.
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
If you head east of Paris to check some of the other spots that have been mentioned it would be worth including Liberty Tool in Liberty, ME on the route. It has been 10 years since I was there last but I see from a quick internet search that there are still in business and now selling on eBay. It is a multi story building full of antique tools for sale, when I was there last it was not at antique store prices but more like a bargain store. Even if you don't buy a thing it is a great place spend a couple hours taking in the history of tools.
Take it easy,

Fred
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Re: Maine Vacation NDR In reply to
Liberty Tool is a must if you are in that area. There is also the Lie Nielsen Tool Works down in Warren if you want new and have a big budget. You could hit both in a day. https://www.lie-nielsen.com/

Bar Harbor/Mount Desert Island/Acadia National Park is lovely. I don't go there in summer. Of course, that's what my Montana friend say about Yellowstone, and I still love it when I visit, crowds and all.

If you want fewer people, the Schoodic Peninsula, just on the Northeast side of Acadia, is gorgeous and a whole lot more quiet. Acadia just acquired some additional land over there, and reopened a really nice campground at Schoodic Woods. They have RV hook up sites. Reservations recommended. https://www.nps.gov/...ourvisit/camping.htm

You do not have the mountains out on Schoodic, but you do have great views across the water at them.

"At first blush I am tempted to conclude that a satisfactory hobby must be in large degree useless, inefficient, laborious, or irrelevant."
— Aldo Leopold