Western Maine (Zone 5)
Covers Western Mid-Maine, including Greenville, Rangeley, Bethel
Peak Week: Second Week in October
- Tourism Driving Tour: Maples & Mountains
This tour begins in Naples, passes through Sebago Lake State Park, north to Grafton Notch State Park, down into the White Mountain National Forest, and through Lovell and Fryeburg.
- Tourism Driving Tour: Franklin Heritage Loop
This tour begins in Livermore Falls, heads north along the Carrabasset River all the way to Eustis, then curves west to Rangeley Lake State Park and south to Mount Blue State Park.
- Pequawket Trail (Route 113)
Along the journey the Saco River and the Mountain Division Rail meander parallel to the byway, which runs between Standish and Fryeburg, offering swimming, fishing and kayaking, or cross county skiing, snow shoeing, and snowmobiling.
- Grafton Notch (Route 26)
The Grafton Notch scenic byway begins in Newry, just north of the Sunday River Ski Area, and travels along Route 26 to Grafton Notch State Park and Lake Umbagog, which crosses the New Hampshire border.
- Moosehead Lake
Moosehead Lake Scenic Byway (formerly Seboomook) takes Route 15 from Greenville to Jackman
- Old Canada Road (US Route 201)
The Old Canada Road (U.S Route 201) leads travelers on a trip through time. In towns like Bingham, classic clapboard homes line the streets and harken back to the boom days of the 19th and early 20th centuries when lumber barons reigned over the surrounding forest.
- Rangeley Lakes
The route scales the Appalachian Mountain ridgeline before dropping to rolling valleys and hills. The Height of Land on Route 17 is the route’s showstopper, with stunning views of Mooselookmeguntic and Upper Richardson lakes.
- State Route 27
Begins in the picturesque town of Kingfield and winds along the swift-flowing Carrabassett River with views of Mount Abraham and the Bigelow Range.
- Grafton Notch State Park has roadside turnouts, picnic areas and trails offer excellent views of the Mahoosuc Mountains and the Presidential Range. Trails lead to popular lookouts, such as the Eyebrow and Table Rock, and trails and lookouts on the Bureau of Parks and Lands' Mahoosuc Management Unit.
- Views of the Richardson Public Reserved Land with the White Mountains are spectacular! Find these popular viewing lookouts along Route 17, including the "Height of Land" in Township D.
- The Bigelow Preserve can be viewed from several locations: Route 27/16 in Carrabassett Valley; Cathedral Pines Rest Area in Eustis; the lookout on Eustis Ridge; and from several Bigelow Preserve hiking trails.
- Mt. Blue State Park in Weld provides a panoramic view of Webb Lake and the surrounding mountains. The Center Hill picnic area and trails offer spectacular views of the Tumbledown Mountain Range. Follow signs to Center Hill from Route 156 in Weld Village.
Any serious leaf peeper will tell you Maine's fall foliage season is a sight to behold indeed. Some people come to Maine's Lakes & Mountains to visit our pristine lakes, while others prefer the scenic peacefulness of the covered bridges that dot the countryside.
Pair these extensive and beautiful natural gifts with our charming western Maine towns and villages and you’ve got a fall vacation in the making. Since the hard part might come in choosing how to spend your time when you arrive, we would like to offer you a few suggestions.
Explore and photograph Western Maine’s six wooden covered bridges. In the 19th century, covered bridges started popping up everywhere and at one point there were 120 covered bridges in Maine! Now, just nine covered bridges remain and six of them are in Maine’s Lakes and Mountains Region. From the most photographed and painted bridge, The Sunday River Bridge, also known as the “Artist’s Bridge,” to the shortest covered bridge in Maine, The Lovejoy Bridge in South Andover, we’ve got you “covered”.
A driving tour along one or more of our scenic byways is sure to fill your leaf peeping needs for outstanding views and beautifully diverse landscapes. Enjoy the nationally designated Rangeley Lakes National Scenic Byway and/or one or more of our three state byways - Grafton Notch Scenic Byway, Maine High Peaks Scenic Byway and the Pequawket Trail Scenic Byway.
If you’re in the mood for a different perspective, a ride on the Chondola up to Sunday River's North Peak is in order. Take in the views of the Sunday River Valley and Mahoosuc Mountain Range, explore the mountain on a network of hiking trails, or bring lunch for a mountain-top picnic. You can ride the lift back down or choose from a number of hiking trails to extend your adventure.