March in Maine–not quite Winter, not quite Spring– leaves Mainers with a perfect overlap of outdoor activities to get involved in. There is of course still time for all of you adventure-seeking Mainers to spend time skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, and dog sledding, and all with plenty of daylight. Some of the things we at Activity Maine love about March are festivals, races, longer days, and off season prices.
Snowmobilers and nordic skiiers alike enjoy Maine’s many multi-use trails. Photo courtesy of Cathy Genthner
Here are some of our favorite places to go this time of year:
Titcomb Mountain in Farmington, known as the “friendliest mountain around”, offers 16 alpine trails, as well as beautiful nordic cross country trails, for all skill levels. You can expect a fun and an affordable trip to Titcomb Mountain whether you’re a beginner or expert on the slopes. Upcoming events: Saturday, March 9 – Downhill Dummy – feel free to make your dummy to enter in this fun competition; Sunday, March 10 – The Old Gheezer Cup – a fun race for anyone, young or old, take your turn in the famous Otterslide gates
Bethel Chamber is your source for a Maine vacation in the western mountains. You’ll find great deals on lodging, shopping, restaurants, skiing, and more. The Western Maine Fly Fishing Expo on Saturday, March 23 at the Bethel Inn Resort Conference Center exhibits guides, sporting camps, wildlife artists, gear manufacturers and retailers, learn-to seminars, door prizes, and an evening film festival.
Jackman Snowmobiling - The Jackman area offer some of the best snowmobiling opportunities in the Northeast. Known as the Switzerland of Maine, Jackman offers an extensive well groomed and maintained trail system that you can access from most lodging facilities in the area.
Mahoosuc Guide Service in Newry is a small family run business with over 20 years of experience, offering dogsledding, canoeing, and Northern Native culture trips. Their philosophy is to respect and accept the wilderness, not compete against it. With native guides and traditional equipment, Mahoosuc Guide Service offers a unique wilderness experience for all levels of experience.
A musher and dog moment
Quimby House Inn in Bar Harbor offers quaint rooms at affordable rates. A downeast getaway with a spa package and no crowds might be just what you need this month.
We hope that you embrace the endless opportunities Maine provides both in March and in months to follow. A big thank you goes out to all of our loyal readers and advertisers!
Maine pond hockey – a favorite Maine winter activity!
Well, our backyards may be void of snow, but the backyard skating is just PERFECT right now! Enjoy our photos of one the best Maine winter activities: Pond hockey.
Lacing 'em up
Skating takes lots of patience!
What a great day for some pond hockey!
Pond hockey ROCKS!
Our family loves pond hockey!
Time for a skate break
We took a page out of the Bruins' playbook!
Hockey dog wants to go get warm paws!
Dog Sledding in Maine
On Friday afternoon of last week, the 2nd, 3rd and 4th graders and staff of Whitefield Elementary were treated to an up close and personal sled dog demonstration.
Darlene Farr and Talis, a 3-year-old Alaskan sled dog
David Farr, and his wife Darlene, gave a two-hour presentation discussing the basics of dog mushing; including proper dog care and handling, an equipment overview, and mushing terms and commands. David was also able to name every one of their 18 sled dogs!
The kiddos get a chance to pat Shady, Dave and Darlenes' original sled dog.
After the kids’ had a quick lesson in the proper way to act around unfamiliar dogs, the two sled dogs-Talis and Shady-were introduced to the audience.
It was then time to take the show outside, where the kids were in for a surprise…the kids were actually going to play the part of the dog sled team, with their teachers doing the mushing! See the video links below to see how it went!
It was indeed a special treat for the kids and adults alike. A great big THANK YOU to Dave and Darlene for sharing their love of the sport of dog mushing with us!
If you’d like a chance experience dog sledding, you can find Dave and Darlene at the Windsor Fair Grounds, February 13th, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Annual Sleigh Rally (http://windsorhistorical.org/gpage13.html). They can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org with any inquiries.
Volunteering at Me. Handicapped Skiing
Maine Handicapped Shiing
I volunteer at Maine Handicapped Skiing in At Sunday River, and that is just an inspiration to work with their participants. Believe it or not I was up there on Monday on the coldest day in two years, I drove all the way up there and wasn’t even sure if it was cancelled or not and sure enough it was open! I ran into a guy in the locker room getting changed and the first thing he said to me was “Quite a heat wave out there isn’t it?” I laughed andIsaid “Yeah down right BALMY” and little did I know he was who I would work with that day, and he was gung ho to be out there and having fun. With the exception of the sub zero temps with a little breeze the conditions were phenomenal, nice snow and blue bird skies, we would take a few runs and take a break and do few runs and take a break all day. He taught me a lot actually. But volunteering there is special to me because I get to combine two loves of mine sports medicine and snowboarding to help other people. Volunteering or activities diverts your attention from the norm and unties you from work and forces you to focus on something else which is being people for others and that just feels good in so many ways!
Epic sledding party!
As most parents know, it can be challenging to plan a winter birthday party, let alone a super awesome one! We were fortunate enough to have outstanding snow conditions to pull off a fun-filled sledding party.
The crew heads up the hill for the first run.
The two golden rules of large groups of kids: have something fun to do outside, and have tons of food! In this case, I think the hot chocolate was the star of the show.
Milo and Steve shred it up!
The sledding hill is also an important component. We are lucky to have a great hill, that also happens to be on the local snowmobile route. That means “free trail grooming!” We had some epic wipeouts, with the only casualty being an orange sled (that reportedly had a crack in it to begin with..)
As a parent who has two kiddos with winter-time birthdays, the sledding party was a super fun option that left everyone happy, tired, and rosy-cheeked!