|The Bigelows loom over the lake like natural skyscrapers|
Here's a general map of the area for paddling purposes. Please check with the Bigelow Public Reserve Land before selecting a campsite-
View Kayaking and Paddling Flagstaff Lake, Maine in a larger map
As you can see, the area is extensive and accommodations range from tiny, primitive campsites to the more posh (by Maine standards) Maine Huts and Trails location and the motels/hotels in Stratton and Eustis. Whatever your pleasure is for staying overnight, it is there on Flagstaff. Personally, I go for the free back country sites, however the Maine Huts and Trails is something everyone should do at some point.
I put in there at the boat launch in Stratton, just north of the town center. Its a perfect site for big and small boat launches and serves as a great start. The Bigelow Horns rise just off to the east and the imposing profile of East Kennebago Mountain dominates the view west. Sugarloaf and the Crocker Range rise to the South. You paddle beneath the giants.
|From Left to Right, East Nubble, the Horns and Cranberry Peak|
|East Kennebago rises off in the distance|
As I came out of the southwest arm of the lake, the Bigelow Range's profile came into perfect view. There were many small islands without any camps nor development which allowed for nice landings and breaks. A few of them have primitive campsites, or at least room enough for a small tent. I would have liked to have camped a night or two out here under the stars and the shadow of the Bigelows.
|A thunderstorm rolled in quickly!|
Despite the rain, I did still manage to get many pictures and enjoy a relatively easy paddle across the lake. Wind was calm and there were no discernible currents. I've been paddling so much in the ocean lately that I've forgotten how nice it is to not worry about tides, winds and currents! I was able to glide across the lake at a very rapid pace without expending too much energy. It was a perfect day paddle. Although I would have liked to spend more time up here, I had more mountains to climb so I pulled back in to Stratton, had dinner at the Stratton Plaza and camped out overnight.
Read. Plan. Get Out There!