mid-coast maine 2

fish boat returns“Maine, along with Florida, is the most geographically isolated of the lower forty-eight, which may explain its agelessness. Although only the 11th largest, it feels massive by northeastern standards, and wild beyond this New Englander’s imagination, the wildness compounded by a sense of enormity – and isolation.” p.25, Borderlands USA

A family reunion led me back to the relatively busy mid-coast region of Sebasco, the water frigid, the weather wonderfully variable.  [please hover over images for captions]

“It would take most of a week and well over one thousand miles – the length of all Central America – to partially ring Maine, one of the profound surprises of my trip.” p.26

northern wilding

Mt. Owl summit, Baxter State Park, MECome explore the wilds of our northern border with Canada.

Long heralded as the longest peaceful (since 1813 or so) border in the world, it also boasts unimaginable wilderness and a handful of wild, out-of-the-way National Parks.  [please hover over images for captions]

Not long ago, dense forest was everywhere. As de Tocqueville wrote in his 1831 A Fortnight in the Wilderness:

If we had indeed only wanted to see forests, our hosts in Detroit would have been right in telling us that we need not go very far, for, a mile out of town, the road goes into the forest and never comes out of it.

coastal maine

Late afternoon returnCoastal Maine is like no other in the States.  Austere. Cold. Foggy. Mega-tidal.  The water in September is winteresque.  I spent a weekend in Sebasco, south of West Bath, east of Casco Bay, with family, and recalled that Maine in its entirety was one of the greatest discoveries of my trip around the borderlands.  It is the remotest and most different state of the East Coast – and feels very northern.  [please hover over images for captions]

neglected north

Motel vacancy, International Falls, MNSee the neglected northern border in its full glory.  Shots supplement those in the Borderlands USA color ebook.  [please hover over images for captions]