Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness

Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness is an 11,233-acre property located within White Mountain National Forest in western Maine. The property is centered around Speckled Mountain and Caribou Mountain, separated from each other by about four miles of rugged and heavily-forested countryside. The terrain is criss-crossed with deep notches and open ledges. In the lower elevations is where you'll find lots of white pine. Up the hill from that is where the spruces and firs dominate. Mixed in with the evergreens are lots of hardwoods, the kind of trees that make for great colors in the fall season: that's how Speckled Mountain got the name...

In the early years of the 20th century, most of the forest in this part of America was logged. Caribou lived in the area up until the time of the great logging crews. The forest has regrown nicely since those days but the moose have displaced the caribou... moose, black bear, deer, fox, gray wolf and coyote.

The understory of the forest tends to be very thick so travel in the wilderness is easier if you stick to the trails and the ridgetops. Staying higher up will also help to avoid the raging streams swollen with spring and summer snowmelt. There are a lot of trails in the wilderness, most of them following streams, ledges and ridges. Winter access to the property is limited because of the winter closure of State Route 113. The road is generally unplowed from mid-November to mid-May and that road offers the best access to the western trail heads.

Granite outcrops, spruce forest and rolling hills in Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness
A view in Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness
Glacier-sculpted granite outcrops and spruce forest in Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness
Another ridgetop view in Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness
Map of the Caribou-Speckled Mountain Wilderness area

Map courtesy of National Geographic Topo!