FranklinSites.com Hiking Guide
Home

States
 Colorado
 Connecticut
 Maine
 Massachusetts
 New Hampshire
 New York
 Rhode Island
 Utah
 Vermont

 View All

Lists
 NE 4,000 Footers
 NE 100 Highest
 NH 4,000 Footers
 NH 100 Highest
 NH 52 With A View
 NH Belknap Range
 NH Ossipee 10

Links
Search

Trail Conditions

Trip Log
 Sunrises
 Sunsets


About


Sugarloaf Mountain, Spaulding Mountain, Mt. Abraham
Carrabassett Valley, ME, Mt. Abraham, ME

Trailheads, measurements, times, distances, and maps are all approximate and relative to the hike(s) as shown below.
Looking down the Appalchian Trail (the Crockers in the distance) on the way to Sugarloaf Mountain
Looking down the Appalchian Trail (the Crockers in the distance) on the way to Sugarloaf Mountain

Route: Caribou Valley Road, Appalachian Trail, Sugarloaf Side Trail, (Sugarloaf Mountain), Sugarloaf Side Trail, Appalachian Trail, Spaulding Mountain Side Trail, (Spaulding Mountain), Spaulding Mountain Side Trail, Appalachian Trail, Mt. Abraham Side Trail, (Mt. Abraham), Mt. Abraham Side Trail, Appalachian Trail, bushwhack, various logging roads, Caribou Valley Road

With a nice day forecasted, the long drive to the Carrabassett Valley area seemed worth it.

Heading up the aging Caribou Valley Road, we opted to park between the steel grate and subsequent eroded wooden bridge, perhaps half a mile before the Appalachian Trail crossing.

The crossing was marked with a simple cairn. The trail dropped down to the water crossing (rock hoppable in conjunction with a board), then gradually worked its way uphill for a bit. Shortly thereafter, the trail steepened up and climbed up the side of Sugarloaf, ascending some slight scrambles along the way.

Reaching the top of the steeps, the trail turned into a nice ridge walk with excellent views for awhile, eventually ducking back into the woods and gradually working its way to the Sugarloaf Side Trail junction.

After heading up the steady Sugarloaf Side Trail, we arrived at the open, but cluttered Sugarloaf summit. With clear skies overhead, we were able to see the Presidentials to the southwest and, just barely, Mt. Katahdin to the northeast (as well as other larger peaks to the southwest of it).

After a snack break, we turned around and headed back down the side trail to the Appalachian Trail, then continued over the ups and downs and finally the steep climb up to Spaulding Mountain. Taking a left onto the side trail, we reached the summit, where we had limited directional views.

After another snack break, we headed back to the Appalachian Trail and down to the Spaulding Campsite. A bit beyond there, we hit a split in the trail where white blazes went in two directions. Perhaps part of an upcoming reroute, the two branches rejoined after about one hundred yards.

Awhile later, we reached the Mt. Abraham Side Trail junction. Interestingly enough, it was actually a four way junction - the Appalachian Trail heading straight, the Abraham Side Trail to the left, and an unmarked trail heading to the right (perhaps to the logging roads to the south or west).

After a break, we headed up the Mt. Abraham Side Trail. Starting off as a gentle walk through open woods, the trail eventually reached a series of subpeaks and scree fields. Finally reaching the summit, we had superb views in all directions (though not as far reaching as earlier in the day).

After another snack break, we headed back to the Appalachian Trail, then past the campsite. A few minutes past it, we followed a prominent herdpath west a minute or two, until it dead-ended in thick spruce. Our original plan had been to go direct from the campsite (prior to seeing the herd Path) - though it was tempting to go back and look for better woods there, we pushed west through a variety of stands of spruce - some thick, others not. After about twenty to thirty minutes, we reached our target, an old logging landing. From there, we followed increasingly used logging roads, eventually reaching Caribou Valley Road after about 20 minutes. From there, it was about forty minutes to get back to the Appalachian Trail crossing, then just over five minutes back to where we parked.


Hike Ratings
Getting To Trailhead: Difficult
Destination: Sugarloaf Mountain
Length: Moderate
Steepness: Difficult
Navigation: Easy
Views: Excellent
Crowds: Moderate
Destination: Spaulding Mountain
Length: Moderate
Steepness: Difficult
Navigation: Easy
Views: Excellent
Crowds: Minimal
Destination: Mt. Abraham
Length: Difficult
Steepness: Moderate
Navigation: Moderate
Views: Excellent
Crowds: Minimal


Hike Stats
Date Hiked: Thursday, August 19, 2010
Hike Commenced: 9:35 AM
Parking Elevation: 2,220'
Destination: Sugarloaf Mountain
Ascent Commenced: 9:41 AM
Summit Reached: 11:43 AM
Time Elapsed: 02:02
Trailhead Elevation: 2,220'
Summit Elevation: 4,250'
Distance: 2.9 miles
Vertical Gain: 2,130'
Destination: Spaulding Mountain
Ascent Commenced: 12:06 PM
Summit Reached: 1:40 PM
Time Elapsed: 01:34
Trailhead Elevation: 4,250'
Summit Elevation: 4,010'
Distance: 2.8 miles
Vertical Gain: 825'
Destination: Mt. Abraham
Ascent Commenced: 1:56 PM
Summit Reached: 4:08 PM
Time Elapsed: 02:12
Trailhead Elevation: 4,010'
Summit Elevation: 4,050'
Distance: 3.7 miles
Vertical Gain: 1,100'
Hike Ended: 7:58 PM
Hike Time Elapsed: 10:23
Hike Vertical Gain: 4,285'


The Appalachian Trail crossing on Caribou Valley Road
The Appalachian Trail crossing on Caribou Valley Road

The Bigelows as seen from Sugarloaf Mountain - Click to enlarge
The Bigelows as seen from Sugarloaf Mountain

The Sugarloaf Side Trail on the way to Spaulding Mountain
The Sugarloaf Side Trail on the way to Spaulding Mountain

The Saddlebacks as seen from Spaulding Mountain - Click to enlarge
The Saddlebacks as seen from Spaulding Mountain

The Mt. Abraham Side Trail on the way to Mt. Abraham
The Mt. Abraham Side Trail on the way to Mt. Abraham

Spaulding and Sugarloaf as seen from Abraham - Click to enlarge
Spaulding and Sugarloaf as seen from Abraham

Topographic map of Sugarloaf Mountain, Spaulding Mountain, Mt. Abraham - Click to enlarge


Directions to trailhead: Take Route 27 northwest from the entrance to Sugarloaf USA ski area. Just after passing a transfer station on the right (on an uphill), Caribou Valley Road (makeshift Caribou Pond Road sign, summer 2010) will be on the left. As of summer 2010, vehicles with low clearance will not want to attempt this road. Non off-road-capable vehicles will want to park just before the metal grate bridge. The Appalachian Trail crossing is awhile beyond this bridge and a very dicey wood bridge (there is also parking on the left just before the dicey wood bridge). A small parking area will be on the right, just before the unsigned trail crossing.

Back to Sugarloaf Mountain Profile
Back to Spaulding Mountain Profile
Back to Mt. Abraham Profile




Copyright 2002-2018, All Rights Reserved.
www.FranklinSites.com