Conservation Photo Project: Protecting Maine’s Northern Forest. I’ve been fortunate to have had the opportunity to work on several projects over the last 15 years in Maine’s vast Northern Forest area. Millions of acres of this region remain undeveloped and privately owned, primarily by timber management companies. Conservation organizations have done a ton of work over the last two decades to successfully conserve big chunks of land in the Maine woods, but there are still plenty of opportunities to protect more.
Back in July, I spent three days for the Trust for Public Land documenting a new project they are working on with Trout Unlimited, which hopefully will result in the purchase of 8000+ acres in the Cold Stream watershed west of Moosehead Lake. Cold Stream is one of the most important wild and native brook trout fisheries in the Kennebec River watershed, as a large percentage of Kennebec River brook trout start their lives in Cold Stream. The headwaters of the stream hosts several remote, undeveloped ponds that are well-known by the locals as prime fishing habitat.
The property also contains prime white-tail deer wintering habitat, as well as Canada Lynx habitat. Cold Stream also flows through a mile-plus long gorge that feels as wild as it gets and contains a beautiful, but little visited waterfall, appropriately named Cold Stream Falls.
Though the project is in its nascent stages, the property (owned by Plum Creek Timber) is open to the public for fishing and camping. You’ll need a Delorme Maine Atlas (and maybe some local knowledge) to find your way around, but it is a beautiful place to hang out for a few days (on the map, you’ll see the property just east of US 201, between The Forks and Jackman.)
I want to thank Jeff Reardon of Trout Unlimited and Joe Dembeck for taking the time to show me the all the good spots in the watershed. I also want to thank Joe Kruse of Parlin Lake Lodge for volunteering to fly me over the property for a few aerial photos, and Wolfe Tone of the Trust for Public Land for joining Jeff and I (and bringing the Maine microbrews!)
Here are a few more photos from the shoot: