Maine: An Encyclopedia
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T2 R10 WELS

Mount Katahdin from the Golden Road East of Millinocket Lake

Mount Katahdin and Golden Road East of Millinocket Lake

Abol Bridge on the Golden Road

Abol Bridge, Golden Road

West Branch of the Penobscot River at Horserace Brook Campground on the Golden Road

W. Branch at Horserace Brook

Trail to the Rainbow Ledges

Trail to the Rainbow Ledges

Three Routes

This township, officially known as T2 R10 WELS, is the crossroad of two major “highways” in Maine: The Golden Road and the Appalachian Trail. Both travel the Abol Bridge over the West Branch of the Penobscot River.

The Golden Road

From east of Millinocket, the road crosses the Abol Bridge and follows the West Branch of the Penobscot west.

West Branch and Mount Katahdin

West Branch and Mount Katahdin

Horserace Brook Campground and boat launch is at the far west of the township, providing access to the river and views of the mountains.

Horserace Brook Campground

Sign to Horserace Brook on the Golden Road

Horserace Brook Campground Entrance on the Golden Road

Horserace Brook Campground Entrance

Appalachian Trail

ABOL BRIDGE TO RAINBOW LEDGES

Caution Sign on Entering the 100 Mile Wilderness

Caution Sign on Entering the 100 Mile Wilderness

This township features seven ponds and the Abol Falls on the West Branch of the Penobscot River just below the Abol Bridge.

The Rainbow Ledges lie 5.8 miles southeast of Abol Bridge over the West Branch of the Penobscot River on the Golden Road. This section is part of the “100 mile wilderness” portion of the trail that has its eastern terminus in Monson. That full hike requires careful preparation and experience, as the sign at right warns.

However, the easy day hike from the Bridge to the Ledges offers scenic views, moderate elevation changes, and a great picnic site before returning.

Blueberries at the Rainbow Ledges

Blueberries at the Rainbow Ledges

A hiker rests at the Rainbow Ledges

A hiker rests at the Rainbow Ledges

Blueberries abound and a hiker rests on the Rainbow Ledges. The views below of Mount Katahdin and other mountains to the west are a reward to savor along with the berries.

Mount Katahdin from the Rainbow Ledges

Mount Katahdin from the Rainbow Ledges

Western Mountains from the Rainbow Ledges

Western Mountains from the Rainbow Ledges

Mount Katahdin from the Rainbow Ledges on the Appalachian Trail Western mountain range from the Rainbow Ledges.

Hurd Brook links Little Hurd Pond to the north and the much larger Hurd Pond to the south, both off the Appalachian Trail. The Hurd Brook Lean-to lies on the stream between the ponds.

The West Branch

The West Branch of the Penobscot River runs west to east across the northern portion of the township for about six miles.  Below Nesowadnehunk Falls and above Abol Falls the river offers a fine opportunity for a leisurely float on raft or canoe.

At Abol Falls:

AT Lean-to at Hurd Brook

AT Lean-to at Hurd Brook

Signs on AT Lean-to at Hurd Brook

Signs on AT Lean-to at Hurd Brook

AT Outhouse at Hurd Brook

AT Outhouse at Hurd Brook

AT South Boot Icon<= South      Appalachian Trail – click a boot      North => AT North Boot Icon


Appalachian Trail photos, August 6, 2005; Golden Road photos, May 28, 2012.

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This entry was last modified: May 11, 2017 01:16 AM

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