Date of Hike: Monday, September 1, 2003 (Labor Day).

Route: Appalachian Trail - Whitehouse Landing (Old Mahar Tote Road) to JoMary Road.

Pictures: None at this time, since I was not on this section of the trip.

Total Distance: 10.6 miles (10.2 on AT)

Difficulty: Relatively level terrain with one 350 foot climb.

Conditions: excellent

Weather: Sunny, 70s.

Participants: Dean Gletsos, Alex Lantino, Chris Connolly, Stelios Sifniades & Maria Sifniades

Hike Statistics:
0.0 500 9:25 AM Pemadumcook Lake - start of hike
0.3 500 9:35 make left on AT from Mahar Tote Road
2.3 500 10:30-10:40 side trail to left (75 feet) for view from Pemadumcook Lake
2.9 700 11:00 Potaywadjo Spring Lean-to - on left
4.7 493 11:45-11:55 AM side trail to left leading 100 feet
for sand beach on Lower JoMary Lake
4.9 540 12:05 PM Junction Potaywadjo Ridge Trail on right 5.2 500 12:15-1:00 stop on Lower JoMary Lake for lunch & swim
6.4 500 1:45-1:55 side trail leads left 100 yards to Antlers
Campsite - prominent point on Lower JoMary Lake
7.7 500 2:20 cross Mud Pond Brook
8.0 540 2:40 cross gravel logging road next to ruined log
bridge over Cooper Brook
10.6 600 3:40 PM JoMary Road - end of hike

Trip Report:

This was the fourth day of a four-day backpack as our group completed the hike thru the northern lake section of the Hundred Mile Wilderness. I was not with the group. Notes were passed on by Dean & Chris which I used to compile this report. This day was another easy day with little elevation gain.

Before we got started, word was passed on to the group that I (Aaron) was going to be meeting them at 4 PM at JoMary Road where the AT crosses. Since further along on the trip there is alot of driving logistics and plans that were all in my head, the group was glad to hear that I was joining them. Starting out the hike, they had a pleasant surprise, they were let off from the boat ride only .3 mile from the AT at the landing where Mahar Road comes out at Pemadumcook Lake. This eliminated an unpleasant mile of hiking thru the mud near the shore and reduced the length of the hike. At 2.3 miles into the hike and the last viewpoint on Pemadumcook Lake they had a good view of Mt. Katahdin & The Knifes Edge. At 4.7 miles with the temperature rising, Chris took a quick dip at a sand beach on Lower JoMary Lake. At this time it was decided that they would skip the excursion hike planned by Aaron on the Potaywadjo Ridge Trail and instead make a leisurely stop for lunch and a swim along the south shore on Lower JoMary Lake. Everyone but Maria went for a swim. When they came out on JoMary Road, I was late arriving by ten minutes and the group waited patiently for 1/2 hour for my arrival.

The plans then had us set up at JoMary Lake Campground for the upcoming three night stay, which was seven miles down JoMary Road (gravel/dirt logging road). Here we reserved two trailers for our group of six. The campground has basic camping supplies, canoes and pedal boats for rent, bathrooms with flush toilets and coin hot showers, and laundry machines. The campsites with the trailers were right on Upper JoMary Lake with a beautiful view of Mt. Katahdin and the other Baxter peaks. The sounds of loons at such a picturesque setting were enjoyed by all. The trailer had all housekeeping facilities, hot water (in the sink), lights, refrigerator and toilet. You have to supply your sleeping bag and pillow. There was a canopy over the picnic table so you can eat out of the rain. The cost for a trailer and one car is $36 plus tax. $4 for each additional car. The car costs covered the gate fees for use of the lumber roads to get there. It also was supposed to be good for the Katahdin Ironworks gate as well. So when you figure the individual cost and the comfort factor (ie. decent bed & shower), this diversion from the trail becomes a luxury that should not be passed up and making the traverse of the Hundred Mile Wilderness for the day-hiker manageable. The view from the campsite was a super bonus. We made a 3 night-2 day stay at this campground and arranged car shuttles for the next two day hikes.The capability to day hike the next two days of the AT, makes this option seem definitely worth considering. By the way, if you want just a campsite it is $18 per night plus $4 each car.

Next, we went into Millinocket, retrieved the cars from Abol Bridge, filled up with gas, ate dinner out and bought provisions for the remainder of the trip. On our return from Millinocket, Chris was stopped on the outskirts going south on ME 11, for having only one headlight. He was just given a warning after the trip to get it fixed. Then further along, with Dean driving and in the lead he screeched to a halt as a moose and her calf slowly ambled off the road. That was close!!! One other item to concern yourself with is that you must get back to the JoMary lumber Road Gate before they close it at 9PM. We informed the gatekeeper that we most probably would not return before 9PM and they made arrangements with us so we were not charged the extra inconvenience late fee.

Drive statistics:
0 4:11-4:17 PM AT crossing of JoMary Road
6 4:30-5:31 JoMary Lake Campground (register & shower)
12 5:48 JoMary Road & ME 11
27-31 6:08-6:35 Millinocket (shopping)
49 7:00-7:03 Abol Bridge (retrieve Chris & Alex cars)
70 7:30-9:15 Millinocket (gas & dinner out)
87 9:36 JoMary Gate
92 9:48 PM JoMary Lake Campground