The Bigelows

Stratton, Maine 04982

The Bigelows

The Bigelows Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"The Bigelows contain four peaks above 3,500 feet, two of them above 4,000 feet. This hike goes to 4,088-foot Avery Peak, but the hike can be modified to include all four summits, or you can add just West Peak, the highest in the range.

Each peak has a large, rocky area above treeline that offers fine views in every direction. The hike up the Fire Warden’s Trail is very steep, climbing more than 3,100 feet, but the views and the open summit are worth the effort."

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Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

AMC's Best Backpacking in New England (Appalachian Mountain Club Books)
Matt Heid
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"Bigelow Range creases the landscape of western Maine, a long, rocky ridge dotted with peaks and far-reaching views. At lower elevations, enriched soils create habitat for abundant sugar maples. In fall, they blaze in leaf-peeping glory. Come experience the full spectrum of 3,000 feet of elevation change, climbing from the mountain’s base to its dramatic highpoint atop 4,145-foot West Peak."
100 Classic Hikes in New England (The Mountaineers Books)
Jeffrey Romano
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"The centerpiece of a 36,000-acre preserve permanently protected by Maine voters in 1976, Bigelow Mountain’s scenic ridgeline is an assortment of breathtaking views, idyllic ponds, and abundant wildlife. Once proposed as another big ski area in northern New England, Bigelow Mountain is now a popular destination for hikers and backpackers. Managed by the state for multi-use, including timber management, the Bigelow Preserve offers a great variety of options. This full-day or two-day loop traverses the ridge’s most popular locations, but visits quieter locations as well."
Discover Maine (Appalachian Mountain Club Books)
Ty Wivell
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"A fantastic ridge hike along the Appalachian Trail within one of Maine’s most prominent and beautiful wilderness preserves. The circuit hike described here is rated “difficult” both for its overall length and steep climbing. For a less demanding outing, consider an out-and-back hike of the Horns Pond Trail, which has the easiest grade to the ridge and will reduce the overall trip length to 8.0 miles. Alternatively, you can extend the circuit hike into a two-day trip by camping at one of the tent sites or shelters along the route (see the AMC’s Maine Mountain Guide, 9th ed., for additional route and campsite information). A good portion of this hike is above treeline and subject to the full force of the elements. Be sure to plan accordingly and check the weather forecast before departing."
Best of the Appalachian Trail Overnight Hikes (Menasha Ridge Press)
Leonard M. Adkins & Victoria and Frank Logue
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"This short but challenging overnight hike traverses a section of the Bigelow Range and is one of the best wilderness hikes in a state that’s renowned for them. The A.T. ascends Bigelow Mountain to a wonderful mountain tarn—Horns Pond—at more than 3,000 feet in elevation. From Horns Pond, the A.T. ascends South Horn and the West Peak of Bigelow, where there is an awe-inspiring view of Flagstaff Lake and numerous surrounding mountains, including Sugarloaf and the Crocker Mountains to the southwest."

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Trail Information

Nearby City
Trail Type
Skill Level
6-8 hours
Bigelow Preserve
Local Contacts