Places to go to and people to see. Selecting

Black Mountain Of Maine Ski Center  in Rumford  is home to the Chisholm Ski club which has sponsored many a National Ski race and nurtured the development of Olympic stature cross country ski competitors.  The Club has hosted the National Cross Country Ski Race s and the racers shown on the right below are the members of "TEAM DEFIE"  from Quebec who competed at the junior regional races in 2006. The races occur at the Broomhall Stadium, named in honor of "Chummy" Broomhall, Rumford native son, Olympian cross country skier and patron of the sport. If you cross country ski at the level of an Olympic athlete, then you already know of Black Mountain of Maine.  If however, you are like the rest of us and want to try this sport in a serene and supportive environment, then Black Mountain is right for you too. There are many trails and there is one right for you. The mountain also offers snow tubing and day/night time alpine skiing for the whole family.  Check the Chisholm Ski Club's web  site for updates on ski conditions.  This is truly a family center which means, easy to use, family-friendly pricing and friendly, helpful volunteers to help you get started.  The night tubing and skiing are a real asset to those who want evening entertainment for the younger (and younger at heart) set.

Sunday River Ski Resort  offers the very best in alpine skiing and other winter sports. It is approximately 12 miles away off of Route 2. There are a number of restaurants on the way to the resort and there are wonderful restaurants inside the various lodges.  Some exceptional Bethel places for visitors to "take out"  are the newly opened "Gourmet in a Pinch" on Rt 2, Cafe deCocoa on Main Street and an all time favorite, Good Foods on Rt 2.

Hiking:  We are directly across the street from access to the hiking trails to White Cap Mountain. The Mahoosuc Land Trust spear-headed a campaign to keep the top of the mountain free of development.  Along with their efforts, landowners who cherish the views from the top of the mountain have maintained a "no development"  approach.  The first weeks of August  traditionally find the mountain's rocky ledge surface covered with blueberries...the source of our delicious blueberries served for breakfast. The mountain is a local treasure.

Snowshoeing:   We have direct snow mobile trail access for a wonderful groomed trail up and over the mountain.  There are too numerous trails in our area to describe all but Grafton Notch State Park is often a goal for snowshoers. 

Snow mobiling.  The area abounds in snow mobile clubs who help maintain wonderful systems of trails.  These groomed trails pass through the most isolated forest areas and give the riders spectacular views and an opportunity to really appreciate the serenity of the woods.  The Maine Snowmobile Association (www.mesnow.com) offers up to date information on snow conditions, trail maps and area information.    We connect to ITS 82 (Interstate Trail System) through a side trail as it passes through our yard and connects to Rumford and Andover.   Check with us for trail conditions and availability of this route.  We have already had guests who have traveled to Rangeley from the B&B...their report...."spectacular views and great ride".  Snow mobile rentals are available through  Sun Valley Sports.  We only recommend these folks for rentals of snow machines and proper clothing (gloves, helmets, snow suits, boots all designed for the cold).  These folks are very smart and do not allow anyone to go out without a Maine Guide to take them on the trails. This is absolutely essential.  The Maine woods in the winter are breathtaking but can be dangerous for the unfamiliar and/or inexperienced snowmobiler...and experienced snowmobilier as well  (ask us for stories!)   

Appalachian Trail  is nearby and offers a "day" trail that can easily be done by experienced hikers and is attainable by virtue of enthusiasm for the less experienced.  The trail is maintained by the local Appalachian Club members and passes under the arboreal forest mantle on its way to Mount Katahdin.  The Maine stretch of this nationally known trail is considered to be a difficult part of the Georgia to Mount Katahdin trek, however, the "day" trail is lovely and may take part of or a whole day to cover.  The reward at the end of the decent into the forest is a beautiful waterfall and pool.  The water is cold but inviting.   Great lunches can be packed by the local Andover General store to take on you trek.  In order to properly prepare, you might consider reading "A Walk in the Woods" by Bill Bryson. It is hilarious! It will keep you from stuffing your hiking jacket pockets with candy bars instead of a map and compass!

 

A Wrinkle in Thyme  is a wonderful farm and shop for lovers of fiber art and wools. If you are coming up to us or on your way home and use Rt 26, the farm is a worthy side-destination.  If you want to purchase, look at or just touch the most fabulous woolen yarns and then pat the sheep that produced them, you need to visit this fiber co-operative.  Everything  you need for needle-felting, knitting, and spinning can be found here.  The farm is a member of the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Program and offers shares for interested parties.

The Lovejoy Bridge is a wooden covered bridge  built in 1876 is still used daily. There is a quiet area by the pooled water which is available for a quiet picnic or  reading. The bridge is located on a country road very close to the farm and would be easily accessible for the average cyclist.  Walkers would have to be ready for an approximately 8 mile round trip.

Grafton Notch State Park  is a wonderful regional resource for hiking, swimming and for family picnics. During the winter, it is an excellent place for snowshoeing. There are many trails available year round.  The ride through the park in the fall season, offers some of the most spectacular views and picture taking opportunities. 

 

Coos Canyon,  located on Route 17 , is a spectacular naturally carved rock formation which has the Swift River flowing through it.     In the Spring and after rainfall, the rushing waters flow through the canyon and give the photographer an opportunity to capture a "great shot".   There is the Coos Canyon Rock and Gift Store (tel/no. 394-4900 ) at the park which is opened seasonally and which is home to a guide who can take you panning for gold in the river as generations have done before you. There are picnic tables and cool trees to sit under.

Rangeley Maine is a small town on the Rangeley Lakes and has much history of an earlier turn of the century time when trains took tourists from Portland, Boston and other faraway places to vacation there.  Quaint shops and restaurants  make this a popular goal for many in all seasons.  There is an outstanding nature shop called ECOPELAGICON. Located on Pond Street, the shop has a wide collection of guide books, bird and wildlife books, maps and literature and music CDs. This store is not to be missed.  Another store is called "Books, Lines and Thinkers". Proprietor Wes Connally is a wonderful book lover's resource.  Knowledgeable regarding most of the books he sells, he can give you great recommendations.  We never go to Rangelely without stopping in.  A great antique place is Dallas Hill Antiques  located on, of course, on Dallas Hill which is the road to Saddleback ski area.

    The availability of well groomed snow mobile trails from our area (in fact on our property and going across the street from our front door) makes Rangeley a particularly attractive goal during the winter months. The area to the right is a view of one of the Rangeley Lakes,  Mooselookmeguntic Lake, and is seen from the  Heights of the Land on  Route 17.  The view in all seasons is breathtaking. Rangeley is approximately 40 miles north of Rumford on  Route 17.  This route has been named a State of Maine Scenic Highway and there is always a strong possibility of seeing wildlife including moose and deer.   In  fact, drive slowly as moose are quite unpredictable. Driving the Route 17 in winter can be absolutely hair-raising! Whatever the season, the views are spectacular.  

 

The 13 Mile Wood  and the Androscoggin River in Errol, New Hampshire are popular visiting sites for those interested in kayaking or canoeing.  The bridge in Errol is a well known nationally, starting point for many interesting in making their way down the waterway.   Anyone interesting in seeing a large collection of preserved (i.e. "stuffed" ) animals of the northeast woods, including a blond moose (very, very rare) can stop at L.L. Cote , a sports person's dream of a store. Going south, rest areas along the Thirteen Mile Wood section of the trip from Errol to Berlin,  allow travelers out for an afternoon drive to sit and watch the Androscoggin River as it flows southerly to Gorham N.H.  The Fall foliage is particularly impressive along this stretch as the red, orange and golden leaves frame the flowing river.

Mineral shops.  There are many mineral/gem shops in Maine, as the state has many gem stone mining sites which are open to the public.  The River Valley Mineral Museum on RT 2 near us,   Mount Mica Rarities in Bethel offer wonderful collections of locally obtained tourmaline and other gems.  Visiting these shops gives the gem stone admirer a good education as well as beautiful gem stones to look at in their raw forms as well as in jewelry settings.  These stores can give good directions to local mines which are open to the public for "amateur" miners!