Am planning on a 3 day trip on Aziscohos Lake in October. Any info, advice, etc. would be appreciated.
…a little doc…
Here was a little info linked via an AlpineZone hiking thread...fwiw.
I had actually just posted this topic but quickly deleted it once I started reading about Flagstaff Lake. But now I’m confused, thinking of the lake you are posting about, Umbagog, or Flagstaff.
Not too steal your post, but I’d be intersting in hearing how this lake compares to Umbagog and Flagstaff, from wildlife abundance to campsite quality.
lots of sandy beaches
and not a lot of power boats. some campsite on first island for a fee.After that all the way at the northern end is a very nice sporting camp.I can’t remember the name. Maybe Bigspence knows. Anyway azircohos is of the beaten path of most who come to maine so you’ll have a great time there.
October sounds nice
October's the bug-free month and temps are usually fantastic, but bring something for warmth at night...it can often be the month where day/night temperatures change the most.
Umbagog vs Aziscohos
We did a 4 day trip on Umbagog last year in October. Had fantastic temps, lotsa wind. Seems to turn on around mid morning and turn off around 5-6 PM, so paddling early morning to get to next campsite a must. Wildlife? Saw lots of loons, but didn’t see a moose until I was driving home. Here’s a link to an article about Aziscoho http://www.nhamcpaddlers.org/mem_trips/Umbagog_Aziscohos2.htm.
Thanks for the link - it’ll go in my trip file. We will probably do some hiking in the area as well as paddling.
Yes we’ll certainly enjoy the bug free aspect of the trip. We’ve already got our fire permits so should be able to stay warm at night. Last year on Umbagog we were blessed with 70 degree temps during the day and it never got uncomfortably cold at night. Hoping for the same on Aziscohos.
Early October maybe…
The leaves can be whipped off the trees by mid October.
Night temps can dip pretty low.
The end of September will see peak color at that elevation. By the end of October it can be kind of brown or barren.
Just tossing another penny in.
Thanks - we’ll going Columbus Day weekend and hoping for at least a little color.
We did flagstaff lake a few weeks ago and had a great time. A couple of thoughts: The lake is very large and waves can whip up quite quickly. There are very few campsites, so be prepared to paddle an additional 3 or 4 miles if your destination is occupied. Also, the campsites have only a stone fire ring, no table, no privy. Fire permits are given only for specific campsites (which are in different townships) and since the sites are first come, first served, you may find yourself having to make a decision about spending a dark and chilly night or breaking the rules. (kind of silly, if you ask me) The lake level can vary, and the sandy beaches that we expected were 2 feet below the surface. on a related note, Flagstaff lake village was flooded when the dam was built, and there is a nice song and video by Slaid Cleaves which describes the history a bit.
Its starting now though
here is a color guide
Aziscohos, like Umbagog and Flagstaff, is prone to high winds and waves---I have heard stories of 8-foot waves and have seen conditions that turned back large pontoon boats. The north end of the lake is much more protected and also more interesting to paddle. There are quite a few islands to explore up there, as well as the Magalloway and Little Megalloway Rivers. To avoid the wind plan to paddle early in the morning and late in the day.
I was there last October and saw 4 moose, loons, and lots of other waterfowl.
Access to the north end is via Parmachenee Road, which leaves route 16 on the west side of the lake. This is a logging road in good condition. It's easy to get lost on the roads on the east side of the lake, so I would stick to Parmachenee Road.
CAMPING: At the south end there is Black Cove Campground. The sites close to the lodge aren't that nice. The sites up the lake are about 400 feet from the water---a long trek. The access road to that area is very poor---don't take a compact car in there.
At the north end there is a quaint, rustic campground called Aziscohos Wilderness Campground. I'm not sure the owner wants his name published here, so I won't mention it. You can enquire about it by calling Bose Buck Mountain Camps, which is at the northwest end of the lake. To get to the sites you paddle about 1/4 mile from the parking lot---they are paddle-in sites only. Some of the sites require a trek up a rather steep bank. A couple of sites are easier to get to. There was no one else there when I was there last October.
My understanding is that it is not legal to camp on the islands. I don't know whether that's enforced or not. The island beaches are wider at the end of October after the fall drawdown starts. I would avoid the islands if you have a large party or intend to make a fire.
WEATHER: Be prepared for nighttime temperatures in the 20s, daytime high 50s to 60s on a sunny day. Be prepared for cold-weather camping and kayaking, and short days. The sun will be setting around 6:00 p.m. as I recall. A fire won't keep you warm all night---I recommend approx. 15-degree sleeping bag.
Except for one or two camps at the north end, this is a remote and beautiful area. Highly recommended.