Baxter State Park - CLOSURES
(4/15/2020) In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Park is following recommendations from the US CDC, Maine CDC, the Piscataquis County Emergency Management Agency, and the Park Medical Director, as well as complying with emergency medical protocols issued by the Maine Department of Public Safety.
Based on these recommendations and in the interest of staff and public safety, pursuant to BSP Rule 6.3, Baxter State Park will be closed to camping, vehicular access, and travel above treeline until further notice. All Katahdin trailheads are closed at trailheads. The Park's target opening date is July 1. Click here for more information.
Kennebec River Ferry Service
The Kennebec River is the most formidable unbridged crossing along the entire A.T. Do not attempt to ford the river. Please use the ferry service.
Schedule for 2020
The Kennebec Ferry will operate May 22-October 12 in 2020.
The hours of operation are as follows:
May 22-June 30 from 9am-11am
July 1- September 30 from 9am-2pm
October 1- October 12 from 9am-11am
The Kennebec River is the most formidable, crossing on the A.T.:
• The Kennebec is approximately 400 feet wide with a swift, powerful current.
• As a result of water releases from multiple hydro facilities on the river, the depth and current of the river surge quickly and unpredictably. You cannot cross faster than the water level rises!
• Even at the lowest water levels, slippery rocks and strong currents make fording dangerous.
• Arrive early in the time period to ensure a safe and enjoyable crossing.
• If, in the judgment of the ferry operator, river or weather conditions make the crossing dangerous, the
service will be discontinued until conditions improve.
• Hikers are required to complete and sign a release form, wear a life jacket, and follow instructions.
• Groups of 6 or more – call or email the Ferry Operator to schedule a crossing. Arrive early!
• Pending availability, service outside of the regular season (see above dates) may be arranged for a $50 fee per crossing (1 or 2 hikers). Please call or e-mail in advance to make arrangements.
• No service will be available between November 1st and April 30th.
For more information and a schedule, view the Maine Appalachian Trail Club's
Kennebec River Ferry page
or download a flyer here
Appalachian Trail Visitor Center in Monson, ME
(Updated 8/26/19) Everyone is welcome. Long-distance hikers are able to obtain information about the 2019 Baxter State Park hiker permit. Staff are available to help plan logistics for the 100 Mile Wilderness and Katahdin. Trail conditions posted daily. Community and day hike information also available.
|Hours: 8am - 11am and 1pm - 5pm, every day (June 5 to October 14)
Address: 6 Tenney Hill, Monson, ME 04464
Phone: (207) 573-0163 (active as of June 5)
If visiting in person, note that the visitor center
is located in the Monson Historical Society
building on the town’s main street
Baxter State Park
(Updated 8/26/19) 2019 Appalachian Trail Long Distance Hiker Permit: A free A.T. long distance hiker permit is required of all long distance A.T. hikers: Northbound Thru-Hikers (Nobos), Southbound Thru-Hikers (Sobos), Flip-Flop Thru-Hikers and Section-hikers.
Long distance A.T. hikers must obtain a permit card in person at Katahdin Stream Campground when the A.T. (Hunt Trail) opens for hiking. Once hikers obtain a permit card they will need to have it stamped at the Katahdin Stream Ranger Station.
The number of AT-Hiker Permit Cards for 2019 are limited by a Baxter State Park quota: 3150 A.T. hikers. If all available permit cards have been issued for 2019, "The Birches" long distance hiker campsite will close for the year. Hikers may complete their hike by obtaining a Day Use Parking Reservation (DUPR) or campground reservation (cannot be processed via smartphone) and enter the Park through the Togue Pond Gate.
For more information, please visit the Baxter State Park webpage or refer to FAQs below.
Hikers staying overnight within the park boundary must camp at designated sites; reservations are necessary for overnight sites for all hikers except those who have arrived on foot walking more than 100 miles. (Southbound thru-hikers should plan on making reservations for at least the night following their climb of Katahdin, and possibly the night before). All overnight hikers must pay a camping fee whether a reservation is obtained in advance or not. For more information about camping in the park and climbing Katahdin, visit www.baxterstatepark.org and the Baxter State Park Facebook page.
Access to Mt. Abraham - The Rapid Stream road damaged
It is being repaired only to the last house which is 3 miles short of the trailhead.