Saturday, August 13, 2011

Maine County High Points - Part 1

Al and I headed up to Maine to finish off the county high points and county prominence points list.  If all went well Al would finish both lists and I would be two peaks shy of completing Maine.

We headed off after work on Tuesday and drove 130 miles to Whitten Hill in Bowdoin Maine.  This was a five minute walk to bag the most prominent point in Sagadahoc County.  Next up was a 20 mile drive to Blinn Hill in Dresden Maine.  Another five minute walk had us at the most prominent point in Lincoln County.  We closed out the day with 150 mile drive to Pleasant Mountain in Devereaux Twp where we set up camp near the end of the logging road we'd be hiking on in the morning.

Day 1:
Drive = 300 miles
Hike = 10 minutes
Peaks = 2

It rained all night and we got out of the tent at 6am knowing it'd be a wet day.  Even if it didn't rain all day the woods would be wet and a lot of what we'd be doing involved bushwhacking (hiking off trail).  We started with a 1:04 bushwhack to the summit of Pleasant Mountain (1,374'), the highest point in Washington county.  Al was solid navigating us, dead on as always.

Next up was a 75 mile drive to a fire tower on Musquash Mountain in Topsfield ME.  We drove to the tower and then bushwhack (30 minutes round-trip) to get the highest point on the mountain.  Then we were off to Mars Hill (the town and the peak).  80 miles later we pulled into the ski area parking lot and prepared for a run across the ridge (to bag three peaks).  We started with a road run below the cloud deck then climbed an access road to the NW summit.  There were about 30 windmills on top of the mountain but we could barely see them due to the thick fog.  The final bump was the 1,208' summit which is the most prominent point in Aroostook county.  In all we ran for 1:27 all in fog/drizzle and then dropped down the ski slope to the car. 

Summit shelter on Mars hill
Next up was a 50 mile drive into the Great North Woods.  We really didn't get our money worth on this trip with us arriving at 3 PM at the base of Peaked Mountain and spending only a little over an hour on the mountain (with 27 minutes of running).  Peaked (2,220') is the highest point in the biggest county in Maine (Aroostook).  Our final peak of the day was reached after another 40 mile drive.  I was feeling a bit beat as we hit the trail at 6 pm (close to my normal bed time).  We ran for 47:42 of the 1:27 round trip to the most prominent peak in Penobscot county - Mt Chase = 1,700'.  We closed out the day with a "short" 50 mile drive to Millinocket, where we crashed for the night.

Beat at the end of a long day
Totals for the day:
Drive = 295 miles
Run = 2:43
Hike = 2:50
Peaks = 7

More to follow....

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