Piscataquis County High Point Trip Report

Katahdin (5,268 ft)

Date: July 9, 1951
Author: Fred Johnson

The day before we had driven from Marilyn's home in Augusta via Millinocket to overnight at the comfortable facilities at Kidney Pond Camp. After breakfast, the Camp's owners were kind enough to follow the three of us in their car to Roaring Brook, some 25 miles away, dropping us there, and then leaving our car at the foot of the Hunt Trail for use on our return.

We left on the Roaring Brook Trail at 10:05 AM, hiking the 3.3 miles to scenic Chimney Pond at the base of Katahdin, arriving there at 11:35 AM. A visit just to Chimney Pond is worthwhile in itself with the impressive view it offers of Katahdin rising abruptly from its steep glacial cirque. The sky was overcast with cirrus clouds and considerable haze. We had some misgivings about a possible storm brewing, but the weather held. We climbed up the Dudley Trail to Pamola Peak, where we stopped for lunch at 1:30 PM. We then continued carefully but steadily in a stiff breeze up the airy Knife Edge with its dramatic views of our alpine surroundings. We reached South Peak, which at first appeared to be the high point on the horseshoe ridge. Not so, of course, and at 3:30 PM we topped out at Baxter Peak, Katahdin's and Maine's high point. Despite the limited visibility we had fairly good views of surrounding landmarks like The Owl, Hamlin Peak, and Chimney Pond, as well as other peaks we didn't know by name.

Soon we were headed down the Hunt Trail, along the Tableland past Thoreau Springs to the Gateway. It was a long 5.2-mile return for us as the day's exertion caused us to slow down. We reached our car, left for us at the Hunt trailhead about 7:30 PM. We hurried back to Kidney Pond Camp for the well-earned hot shower, hearty dinner, and sound sleep.