Sledding The County: From Away

Published: Jan. 22, 2022 at 8:25 AM EST
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Snowmobiling brings people from all over to the County to enjoy the trails.  Last week WAGM brought you a segment of Sledding the County focusing on how small businesses contribute to the experience that keeps people coming back year after year. In this weeks Sledding the County, Brian Bouchard speaks with some snowmobilers that have come from far and wide to experience the trails of Northern Maine.

“You always hear about The County. Whenever you go on social media its always “Well if you haven’t ridden The County then you haven’t ridden Maine.”

This is Bill Dahl of Manchester, Connecticut’s first trip to Aroostook County. He calls himself a destination rider, and has written articles for Snow Goer magazine on some of his adventures. After years of hearing about Aroostook county, Dahl and a few friends decided to make the trip to Caribou.

“People have been fantastic, everyone that we’ve run into. They’re not afraid to tell you where to ride, what to ride, what’s good to ride, and that’s a big help. It might be a 7-8 hour drive, which it was for us, but well worth it.”

Over in Presque Isle, Keith Behr, who lives in Maryland is here for his 4th year of snowmobiling in Northern Maine. He arrived a few days before some friends from Florida, and he says there is nothing on earth like the trails of Aroostook County. He shared how he first heard about Snowmobiling in Northern Maine.

“I retired, I was looking for some fun stuff to do. I got online, started Googling and the first thing I came up with was The Sled Shop, so I called and Kevin Freeman answered the phone and he said “Yeah we’ve got sled’s to rent, and I’ll tell you what don’t even waste your money renting a car, just fly right into Presque Isle””

Since that first trip to the county, Behr has introduced many of his friends to the sport, and now they are also making the trek. Keith says that during their week long stay, they plan on exploring the Ghost Trains of Eagle lake and the site of a B-52 that crashed in 1963.

“The trails are unbelievable, the clubs up here do a phenomenal job, not just the groomers, but all the prep work that goes into the trails off season. I mean it is amazing, I’ve never seen trails like up here.”

Earlier in the week, Michael Smith, along with his wife and friends from North Grosvenor Dale, Connecticut, arrived at Russel’s Motel in Caribou just itching to hit the trails.

“My wife got me into the sport about 3 years ago, and I absolutely fell in love with it. She’s been coming up here since she was a kid with her family, and we came up for the first time a few weeks ago to St. Agatha and as soon as I got up here it was just “The Mecca of Snowmobiling” compared to where we’ve been before”

Smith says the amount of snow the County has received so far is perfect for riding, and had this advice for anyone on the fence about making the trip up.

“Your guys’ version of not a lot of snow is everybody else’s version of “we got a lot of snow”, you know so, we fell in love with it and will be continuing to come back. If you’re hesitant on taking the drive, just get in the car and do it, book your stay and just make it happen, don’t hesitate. If you got the itch, get up here and scratch it.”

Brian Bouchard, NewsSource8

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