Sunday, January 13, 2013

Maine Mountain Guide

Maine Mountain Guide - Guide To All of Maine's Trails 

Much like AMC’s guide for New Hampshire’s White Mountains, the Maine Mountain Guide is an extensive and exhaustive review of hiking trails open to the public throughout the entire State of Maine. 

I’ll admit it, after two years of being here in Massachusetts, I do long to go back and live in Maine. Not only did you have coast with places like Acadia, but then there were the rivers and finally the great north woods with it’s various mountain ranges. From the Rangeley area in the west to mountains surrounding Moosehead Lake and finally to the majesty of Katahdin – Maine offers an awful lot of varied hiking opportunities. 

The Maine Mountain Guide covers all of these areas, from the coast to the mountains. Areas covered include: 

Katahdin Area 
Piscataquis Mountains 
East of the Penobscot 
Camden Hills 
Southwestern Maine 
Oxford Hills 
Grafton Notch and Mahoosuc Range Areas 
Weld Region 
Rangeley and Stratton Area 
Kennebec Valley 
Mount Desert Island and Acadia National Park

The book also includes a key to the included maps, an introduction to hiking in Maine, along with a glossary, a sample accident report should you need it, an extensive index and finally information on the Appalachian Mountain Club, who publish the book. 

Each area is first introduced in the chapter, then each trail description goes into almost minute detail about the hike you will have on that trail. Major features along the trail are described; as are steep pitches, trail junctions, side trails and more. It is as if the descriptions were written as someone was walking the trails, they are that accurate and detailed. The descriptions also contain information on the vertical elevation you will be gaining and losing on the hike, the mileage for each trail and an estimated trip time for that trail. 

Seven maps are included with the book and they cover all of the regions that are discovered and show all the trails described in the text. The maps are of a small scale, clear and easy to read and use. They also fold up small enough to fit in your pocket. 

The book is fairly small and can easily be packed in your backpack or kept in a glove compartment in a car should the urge to go hiking grab you. 

As with other AMC titles, the Maine Mountain Guide has one of the best indexes I’ve ever seen. This index is indispensable for finding various trails and mountains. Have a mountain name but no trail name, no problem, have part of a trail name, no problem. The index literally references everything in this book. 

Who Needs This Book 

Anyone hiking further than the parking lot around the car would be well off to get himself or herself a copy of this book. Just about every trail in Maine is described, as are all the important hiking areas. The book is both an excellent introduction to hiking in Maine and a trustworthy reference for experienced hikers. 

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