You should get a Passport to Maine Outdoors and hit the road to visit all the great places included in the passport.
Perhaps you got a passport last year and know this is a project sponsored by the Land For Maine’s Future and the Maine Land Trust Network. They started the project last year to celebrate LMF’s 30th anniversary.
The passport was so popular, they decided to do it again this year. And this year LL Bean is partnering with them, something that is sure to attract even more participants.
While there is still an emphasis on places conserved with LMF funds, the new “Passport to Maine’s Outdoors” also includes land trust preserves, state and national parks, and other public outdoor recreation areas. Like last year, participants simply check off the destinations they visit (no stamps at locations like other similar programs).
Of course, I’m not all that happy this the passport features a few of my favorite places. Last summer Linda and I discovered Maine Coast Heritage Trust’s Bog Brook Trail in Cutler. It’s a beautiful ocean-side hike, and for the entire hike, we saw only one other couple. We did have a nice visit with them.
Also on this year’s passport is the Kennebec Highlands, just 10 minutes from our house. I keep a canoe on one remote pond there, and in the last five years, have rarely seen anyone fishing there. So if you do come to enjoy the Highlands, don’t bring your fishing gear!
Actually, we enjoy quite a few of this year’s choices, from Laudholm Farm in Wells to Baxter Park (it’s in our camp’s backyard) to AMC’s wonderful lands east of Greenville (their new sporting camp at Medawisla is amazing) to Mount Pisgah in Winthrop.
Kennebec Land Trust – the group that we recently donated our Mount Vernon woodlot to – worked for years to secure and protect Mount Pisgah. Growing up in Winthrop, I sometimes hiked through the woods all the way to Mount Pisgah, and then climbed the mountain.
There is also a section of the passport where one can add non-featured destinations. People are invited to visit mainepassport.org to find more information about the 36 highlighted destinations, to learn about other conserved areas in Maine available to the public, and to enter a drawing for awesome prizes donated by L.L. Bean.
Passports will also be available at L.L. Bean’s Freeport store and by request on the mainepassport.org website. Organizations can also receive a supply to give away at public events and programs. Contact Donna for more information about that (firstname.lastname@example.org).