The County 2017 | Aroostook County Tourism - Page 29

STATE PARKS & PUBLIC LANDS LANDS OPEN FOR PUBLIC USE HERE ARE VAST. From the extensive boundaries of the Allagash Wilderness Waterway to the varied parks and reserves, public lands in The County leave no recreational stone unturned. The silent and remote Debouille Public Reserve (as featured on the cover) comprises 22,000 acres of terrain ideal for all kinds of outdoor enjoyment, with access to 17 ponds for fishing (including the elusive Arctic char,) hiking trails leading to endless views from the fire tower 1,981 feet up, old-growth forests, tumbling waterfalls, and ice caves in spots that stay cold all year long. Look for campsites, more trails, and boat access in the southeast. Fish from the larger ponds and look for wildlife on shore from the water. When the snow flies, backcountry snowmobilers can pass through on the primary public access road, traveling between Eagle Lake and the Allagash. Many black bears, loons, moose, and birds of prey also call the area home; wetlands support rare northern bog lemmings; and upland forests offer shelter to Canada lynx. As one of the easiest to reach in the entire region and Maine’s First State Park, Aroostook State Park is an ideal starting point for discovering adventure in The County. The park’s accessible lakeside picnic area provides tables, charcoal grills, paddle boats, and a swimming area (no lifeguards). In the winter, the park offers excellent Nordic skiing, snowshoeing and, for hearty souls, winter camping. Best hikes include these trails: North-South Peak Ridge, North Peak, South-Peak, and Quoggy Joe Mountain trail. Eagle Lake Public Reserved Land is a 23,000-acre parcel that abuts Square Lake to the east with a thoroughfare connecting the two lakes. Trails for hiking, skiing, and motorized sport make this an attractive year-round destination for all. Round Pond Public Reserved Land takes its name from what is really just a widening of the Allagash River. Paddlers, hikers, and hunters alike come to enjoy the views from the observation tower on top of Round Pond Mountain. Located between Presque Isle and Ashland, Scopan Public Reserved Land is 17,000 acres of rugged terrain that includes the 1,400-foot-high Scopan Mountain and 9.5 miles of shoreline on Scopan Lake. Explore low hills, a pond, wetlands, and several brooks for fishing. In winter, the snowmobile trails through the woods are quite popular. For more information about parks and public lands in the region visit our website, call the Northern Public Lands Office at 207-435-7963, or call Judy at 888-216-2463. 27