Carrabassett Valley, near Carrabassett Valley
Map shows trails in Franklin County
- Redington Pond trail — A roughly four-mile loop, with a view over the pond. Part of the Outdoor Center’s trails. Dogs are allowed off-season, I think. I hope!
- Little Bigelow — A great day hike, roughly three miles to a ridge with lovely views. Park of the longer Bigelow Preserve trail, and the AT.
- Burnt Mountain — This is not a difficult hike for experienced hikers, about 5 miles round trip, to a rocky, open summit.
- Maine Huts and Trails — This is a glorious network of miles of groomed ski trails linking four overnight lodges. In addition, there are hiking and biking trails. The system is open year-round, although the huts aren’t always fully staffed.
- Narrow Gauge Pathway — A wonderful 5-mile stretch of easy, relatively flat walking along the Carrabassett River, which is always beautiful and different depending on the time of year and light.
- West Mountain Falls — A 0.4-mile trail along the South Branch of the Carrabassett River to the falls and largish pool. Rocky and rooty.
- Sugarloaf Outdoor Center — 54 miles of groomed nordic trails in the winter, mountain bike trails (and walking trails) in the summer.
- Mt. Abraham — A 4.5-mile hike to a dramatic, exposed summit with 360-degree views. You can continue on to Spaulding Mountain, Sugarloaf Mountain and the Crockers on the AT.
- Reed Falls — This is a delightful, easy, and short trail up a brook to a waterfall, rickety wooden bridges included.
- Avery Peak, West Peak, The Horns on Bigelow Range—A popular 12-mile loop. It’s quite tiring! But you summit four peaks in one day, and can swim in the lovely Horns Pond, nestled in a col.
- North and South Crocker Mountains — The Crockers form a kind of protective western boundary for Sugarloaf, and they loom large in any view from the mountaintop or its base. So it makes sense to want to hike them! Plus, they’re higher than 4,000 feet, which appeals to people wanting to hike every 4,000+-footer in the state and New Hampshire. They offer a nice hike, but not the spectacular views of other high mountains in Maine.
- Sugarloaf Mountain — Sugarloaf’s summit is extraordinary — “the number of peaks visible may be unequaled in the state,” says the AMC guide. It’s the second highest mountain in Maine after Katahdin. I recommend taking the 3.4-mile Appalachian Trail up and down rather than hiking up the ski slopes and tote roads.
- Mt. Redington — You can do a 10-mile loop to the top of this 4,000+-foot mountain, passing through flower-filled meadows and mossy forests. I can’t vouch for the views from the top, it was foggy when I hiked it, but I hear they’re decent, not great. I loved this hike, nonetheless.