Member Trip report

Trip to the Allagash Mountain fire tower

11/10/2020

Trip Report/Photos from BillyB1976

Featured Photo

Back in Aug. the state of Maine installed a new cab on the Allagash Mtn fire tower.  I haven't been to the mountain in a few years, and with the unusually warm Nov. day, I decided to go check it out.

Driving to the trailhead is an adventure.  Allagash Mountain is in a very remote area, miles from any town or paved roads.  My route involved driving 90 miles on woods roads to get there.  The nearest Maine town is Millinocket, 75 miles south.  The nearest town in Quebec is 45 miles to the west.

On my drive to Allagash Mountain I stopped at Chamberlain Bridge on the Allagash Waterway.  The ranger working there saw me and came out on the steps of the ranger station to talk to me.  I've met this ranger several times during my adventures, with the last time being my trip to Round Pond Mtn back in Aug. By now I remember his name, Trevor O'Leary.

There was active logging at the trailhead.  I didn't know if I should park beyond the gate, so I found a spot before the gate to park.

The first part of the hike is easy, about 1.1 miles from my parking spot to the ranger station on Allagash Lake.  My hike started walking on the road for a ways and then onto an old road that is the trail to the ranger station.

Allagash Mtn may be a small mountain, about 1,770 ft, but the hike up it will give you a workout.  The sign on the ranger station says 1 mile to the tower, while the Maine Trail Finder site says the trail is 1.4 miles.  The elevation gain from the lake is only 732 feet, but you gain a lot of that in the last 1/4-mile or so.

The views from the top are excellent.

I hung around the summit for an hour before making the decent.

The thermometer on the shed at the ranger station showed 60 degrees, but it seemed warmer than that.  Most parts of northern Maine got to the low 70's to mid 70's, breaking records for the highest temperature in November. 

My hike took 3 hours.  I did not meet anybody hiking the trail.

After the hike I stopped at the Loon Lodge on Round Pond.  I asked the lady in the kitchen if I could look around, and she said I could, and that there was one cabin that didn't have any guests in it that I could look at. 

Near the end of my pictures are pictures of a bridge.  This is Johns Bridge on the Allagash Waterway, and it is the site of a tragic accident.  On Sept. 12, 2002 a van carrying 15 migrant workers went off Johns Bridge. Only one survived!  This is one of the deadliest accidents in Maine history.  Can't help of think of that accident when I cross over the bridge.

This was a long day, almost 14 hours.  Drove 253 miles, with 184 miles of that on woods roads.

BillyB1976 Posted Nov 13, 2020 at 7:49 AM

Thanks for the comment Jim. It is a remote area indeed. Was a perfect day for an adventure.

phoenix Posted Nov 11, 2020 at 9:02 PM

Hey Billy - Enjoyed your report and pics. Nice reminder of the beauty of the remote areas of Maine!

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