Paddle Maine’s Allagash River this September
Mention the Allagash River to a canoeist and his eyes suddenly become moist and dreamy as he inevitably responds, “Yeah, I’d like to go there someday.” The river has somehow attained legendary stature. Perhaps it’s the way the blue streak of water slips off the map of America’s northern fringes, remote and isolated, hundreds of miles from the nearest metropolis. Or maybe it’s the legacy of writer, philosopher, and inveterate traveler Henry David Thoreau, who ventured down the waterway a mere 155 years ago, waxing lyrically about the last great frontier in the East in his book, The Maine Woods. Whatever the reason, the 92-mile Allagash Wilderness Waterway continues to lure 10,000-plus paddlers to its shores every summer, turning farfetched dreams into reality. Paddle the Allagash in September like I did and you’ll be treated to moose in heat, fall foliage colors, and no bugs. Go with a trusted guide like Mahoosuc Guide Service, who led me down the West Branch of the Penobscot River for this Sierra Magazine story. They still have openings on their September 24-29 trip, $1250 per person all-inclusive.