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Trailhead

From North or South: Turn off US Route 1 approximately 3 miles south of Presque Isle, Aroostook State Park signs marked turn off US Route 1 in both directions. Turn on to the Spragueville Road. Drive 1.5 miles and take a left turn on to State Park Road. Drive 1 mile to park main entrance. The 2 trail heads are 300 yards past the small fee collection building on the right just past the office lodge area. The main trail head is in the South end of the parking lot, the other is at the end of the campground road. Maps are available at the trail head and "you are here" sign maps are posted at all trail intersections.

Description

Aroostook State Park's snowshoe trails are well marked by green markers and signed. All trail intersections have "You are here" maps which show your location to the trail system. The trails are described below (a handout map is available at the park indicating the separate trails).  

South Peak Trail (0.75 mile, Strenuous):

Users should only go up the South Peak never go down it. This is the most technical trail climb in the system. Only seasoned snowshoers should attempt this climb to the top of South Peak. Vertical ledge faces and constant steep sections keep user working hard to get to the summit. Twenty-five yards before the summit, the trail continues across to the Notch and North Peak Trails. The communications tower will indicate that you have reached the top. Make sure to walk due west from the tower, down a short trail to the tent platform, where spectacular views to the west and north can be seen along the Quaggy Jo Mountain ridge line.

Notch Trail (0.2 mile, Advanced):

This trail is the most unique of the trails in the system. It offers the easiest approach and return to the summits of South or North Peaks. The trail splits distinctive ledges giving users a sense of walking through wild remote mountainous territory. One should know that if you go to South Peak that you should return to the Notch Trail and not attempt to go down the South Peak Trail. It is also suggested that users descending North Peak use the Notch Trail rather than the North Peak Trail. 

North Peak Trail (1-1.25 miles, Advanced): 

This climb to the summit of North Peak is a constant uphill steep climb. Though very demanding, it is a lot safer than the climb up the South Peak Trail. Views from the summit will not disappoint. The only view that can not be seen is southerly. It is recommended that snowshoer's return to the parking lot by shoeing across the ridge line (approximately 0.7 miles) to the Notch Trail, or use the North Peak Trail. Never come down the South Peak Trail.

Ridge Basin Trail (0.5 mile, Advanced):

The trail brings you three-fourths of the way up the mountain and traverses the 850' contour line. While trekking across the ridge, keep looking up at the base of the ledges which are beautiful in the early morning light. Users snowshoeing in the shadows of the ridge line during the afternoon will notice opposite the sunbathed shoreline of Echo Lake. 

Shoestring Trail (0.7 mile, Moderate):

This twisting, moderately flat trail (compared to the rest of the trails) brings users through mixed forest lands that once saw pasture lands and ski slopes running through it. This is a great trail for a moderate workout and searching for the new animal tracks showing us just how many different animals make the park home.

North Peak/QuaQuaJo Nature Trail Loop (0.5 mile, Easy-Moderate):

This is one of the easiest trails and allows an opportunity to be a part of nature and to enjoy the winter environment. Due to the steep portion of the Qua Qua Jo Nature Trail, snowshoers may want to trek this trail in a counter clockwise direction. The trail follows a short portion of the North Peak Trail and comes out near the playground on the campground road. Return to parking lot by staying left of the green markers, paralleling the cross country ski trail.

Campground Road (0.5 mile Easy):

This is an easy snowshoe up to the campground paralleling the cross-country ski trail. From the parking lot, follow the green markers on the right towards the North Peak Trail intersection and the warming hut/kitchen shelter just beyond. Please remember that continuing past the shower house in the campground will brings snowshoers into more strenuous and advance trail areas. Novice snowshoers should return to parking lot by using the same trail.

Novice Snowshoe Trail (0.75 mile Easy):

This is the easiest trail we offer. It winds through a cedar swamp. Dense forest gives protection from the wind and offers a great chance to see wildlife. Take the additional .75 mile Shelter Trail to the warming hut to enjoy a warm inviting view of the mountain by the fire.

Other Information

Maine’s first and northern most State Park offers visitors a unique opportunity to enjoy winter in the outdoors.

Other wintertime activities offered by the park include cross-country skiing, a sliding hill, ice skating (condition permitting on the lake), and winter camping. A warming hut, (kitchen shelter in the campground), allows users a chance to rest and meet new friends next to the fire. The downstairs of the lodge can be rented for organized group activities. For updated trail condition reports or more information, please call the park at 207-768-8341.

Please remember, dogs, walkers, and snowshoes are not allowed on the ski trails at any time during the grooming skiing season. Please cross the ski trails and stay on marked snowshoe trails. Dogs are welcomed but have to be on a leash at all times. Thank you for your consideration and cooperation.

Winter Day Use Fees are $1.50 per person 12-64, all others are free. Season passes can be purchased at the park.

Trail Manager

Visit Aroostook State Park online for more information or contact:

Park Manager

Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands, Aroostook State Park
Park Manager
87 State Park Road
Presque Isle, ME 04769
Phone: (207) 768-8341
scott.p.thompson@maine.gov

Comments

mainetrailfinder January 05, 2017, 4:32 pm EST

Update from the park on 1/5/17: Ski and snowshoe trail report for January 5th. No better time to be here enjoying Maine's First State Park. Ski trails are groomed with set track, conditions are excellent. They should be in great shape for the weekend. Snowshoe trails are packed with plenty of fresh snow to enjoy trekking and looking at animal tracks. Conditions are excellent. Please beware that No Snowshoes, Walkers or Dogs are allowed at any time, on any portion of groomed ski trails. The sliding hill is not packed due to slush on the lake. This year's Winter Family Fun Day will be held on Saturday Feb 25th, from 10am - 3pm.

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