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Get Your Kicks on Route 26

Heading North on Route 26 from Portland and Gray takes you to the heart of Maine’s Winter playground. When planning your trip, leave some extra time to visit these great destinations along the way.

Carter’s XC Ski in Oxford has purposely built fat bike trails & fat bike rentals provided on site by the Green Machine Bike Shop. Other noteworthy places to ride are, Shepard’s Farm Preserve in Norway & Range Pond State Park in Poland. Snowmobile trails are also a great option, just be sure to ask permission from your local snowmobile club, as not all snowmobile trails are fat bike friendly.

Winter biking in Maine

Photo courtesy of Green Machine Bike Shop

The Green Machine Bike Shop opened its doors on Main Street in Norway, the Spring of 2012, with the focus on bicycle & ski repair. They have recently moved  just down the road to 419 Main St. and have expanded their retail offerings to include bicycles & accessories from Felt, Scott, KHS, Raleigh, Santa Cruz & Fizik. Their ski lines include Volkl, Black Diamond & Scott Skis, Scarpa Telemark boots, Dalbello Alpine boots, Rottefella, NTN, 22 designs, Black Diamond & Marker bindings. They have group rides for experienced road and mountain bikers, and a group that builds trails. Call 207-739-2324 for the most up to date information on group rides and trail building.

For more than 50 years, Mt. Abram has been one of Maine’s premiere learn-to-ski areas. The ski area is comprised of 1,150 vertical feet, 5 lifts, 51 trails and 2 base lodges. There is terrain for all ability levels. Families love the Westside, with a separate base lodge and an expanded heated pavilion, chairlift, magic carpet and lessons available. The Main Lodge is home to the best après parties in New England! Cruise into Loose Boots Lounge for live music, wine tasting, great drinks and tasty food. Mt. Abram is constantly working to improve snow-making capacity, while expanding the existing trail network to improve the quality of the slopes.

Dogsledding at Five Fields Farm

Photo courtesy of Five Fields Farm

Interested in mushing? Founded in 1977 by mushers Grey and Kathy Pickett, Nooksack Racing Supply is a provider of top quality equipment for novice and experienced mushers and dog powered sports. Friendly, courteous and knowledgeable staff to help you & your four legged friends. Proudly made in Maine, USA.

Mt. Abram has several signature events including a full moon hike, the Mt. Dew Vertical Challenge, Wild West Fest, White Grass Festival and New England Tele Fest and more. Follow Mt. Abram Ski Area on Facebook & In Carters Cross Country Ski Center is a family owned and operated business, and has been for over 30 years. They have 2 locations with full-service ski shops and unique trails. Their ski shops can equip you with quality touring packages, as well as Back Country and top of the line racing equipment for your enire family. Carter’s has many trails designated for Back Country skiers and snowshoers. They rent Back Country equipment and snowshoes at both locations so you can try before you buy.

Winter hiking in Maine

Photo: Jessie Hobgood

Smedbergs’ Crystal Spring Farm’s roadside stand in Oxford was originally built in 1967 and is owned and operated by Roger and Gayle Smedberg and Roger Smedberg, Jr. From Made-in-Maine products like maple syrup, honey, fruit salsa, pottery, soaps and ornaments, to their own One Cow Homemade Ice Cream that’s “udderly delicious,” Smedbergs’ Crystal Spring Farm is an experience unlike any other. Stop by and check out their homemade baked goods including pies, breads and Gayle’s delicious homemade baked beans and chicken pies. Smedberg’s all-natural, home-grown beef, pork and lamb are raised on the farm and fed from the field, with no added hormones. Also available: bison, chicken, seafood and live lobster. You won’t want to miss a stop at Smedbergs’ Crystal Spring Farm.

After all that trail time you will have worked up an appetite! Located right on Route 26 in South Paris, stop for a meal at Maurice Restaurant. Since 1976, Maurice’s has been a pleasant surprise for world sojourners and people new to the beautiful Oxford Hills area of western Maine. The 200-year old clapboard house turned restaurant continues to delight, serving French-Continental cuisine in an elegant country atmosphere at affordable prices.

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