Virgil Parris Forest, Buckfield, Maine - by Beth
Columbia Parris, right, and her sister, Abigail Prentiss, when both ladies were at an advanced age. Columbia was past 100 years old when she passed away.It is a loop, with a very short additional trail, called the Cascade Trail, coming off at one end. We did not do the Cascade Trail as we were running short on time, but will in the future. The Cascade Trail has a falls on it, and there are other water falls on the trail as well. On this particular day, the streams were on the dry side and the falls we saw were just a trickle, but it is not at all hard to imagine how they would be rushing in the spring and I look forward to going back and seeing them then. A few things struck us about the trail. The forest growth is generally very, very young. Again, it would be interesting to know more about the history of this land that would explain why so much of the growth is so young. As a result, the trail feels relatively open and sunny. The foot path itself is nicely maintained, although there are many very small stumps sticking up from it which present a bit of a trip hazard in the fall when they are obscured beneath a little blanket of leaves. I don't know that I would recommend trail running this at this time of year for just that reason. We opted to walk. Really, it was such a gorgeous day, and the trail is so pleasant, that walking gave us more time to soak up the beauty of it all. I could not help but think that this trail would be fantastic for snow shoeing in the winter, and it is meant to be used that way. It is also open for cross country skiing. I would not recommend the trail to inexperienced cross country skiers because there are areas where it would be pretty easy to slide down some steep side slopes toward South Pond if you were not in complete control of your skis and trajectory. I do plan to visit again over the winter. What follows are some photographs I took along the trail. The trail runs right along the shore of South Pond, and as you will see, the pond was absolutely breathtaking on this day, the water reflecting the foliage like a mirror. Needless to say, it was just one more day in the paradise that is the great state of Maine. From my husband, Bill, and me to you...happy hiking (and happy hooking!).
- Parris House Wool Works