Posted on March 16, 2017 and last updated on August 06, 2017

Northern Timber Cruisers X-C Ski Trails, Millinocket


  • Preserve Size: Not sure
  • Trail Mileage: ~ 9 miles in network
  • Pets: yes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Sights: ski hut, woods, wetland

I had a fantastic ski on this nine-mile or so trail system, which takes you through forests and a massive bog, and includes a sweet warming hut with a stove — kindling, matches and wood provided. Don Nodine, who is “one of the trail systems’ originators, architects, groomers and a die-hard X-C skier,” jumped into action when we pulled up at the trailhead recently. He got on his snowmobile and began grooming the trails, which were nicely powdered with a fresh foot of snow from a storm the night before. He also gave us detailed information about the trail network, which he knows very well, having cared for it for many years.

You can do short or long loops here. It’s possible to do a three-mile ski if you head out on A-West Trail to Smith Brook Pond (also called Smith Brook Pond trail, I think), and do the little loop at the end and ski back to the clubhouse. A 5.5-mile loop can be made by skiing the A-East trail, (aka as Highland Trail), to Middle Trail and back A-West Trail. Finally, and I really recommend this if you have the time, you can take either trail to the bog, ski across this interesting landscape, and have lunch at the warming hut. The trail across the bog is well marked with bright orange flags. Then you can go home along the northern K Trail. Don hadn’t yet groomed this trail when I visited, but it was mostly easy to follow, since it’s an obvious narrow trail through the woods. It does cross some logging paths, but if you continue straight, you’ll remain on the right path. At the small bridge, cross the stream and tack right (if you’re coming from the warming hut), making a sharp bend. You’ll soon see more orange flags showing you the way ahead, where the path once again veers south.

Volunteers from the Northern Timber Cruisers Snowmobile and X-C Ski Club maintain this trail system, which, along with other groomed trails in Millinocket and East Millinocket — Bait Hole, the Sno Rovers trails in East Millinocket, and the New England Outdoor Center system — make this area a fantastic place for x-c skiers!

The map I include below is a little outdated because the two short trail legs around Little Smith Pond have been discontinued.

Directions: This system starts at the Northern Timber Cruisers Clubhouse, 1.6 miles northwest of Penobscot Avenue in Millinocket on the Baxter State Park Road. These trails are separate from the snowmobile trails and are also groomed for classic x-c skiing.


Let me know if you have any trail updates or corrections!