Mount Katahdin

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Mt Katahdin is the highest mountain in Maine. Named Katahdin by the Penobscot Indians, the term means "The Greatest Mountain". Katahdin is the centerpiece of Baxter State Park: a steep, tall mountain formed from underground magma. The flora and fauna on the mountain are typical of those found in eastern Canada. Katahdin was known to the Native Americans in the region, and was known to Europeans at least since 1689. It has inspired hikes, climbs, paintings, and a piano sonata. The area around the peak was protected by Governor Percival Baxter starting in the 1930s. Katahdin is the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail. Katahdin is located in Baxter State Park, which is in east central Piscataquis County, about 25 miles (40 km) northwest of Millinocket. It divides the east and west branches of the Penobscot River and is the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail.

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The second highest point in Maine, Sugarloaf Mountain at 1,295 m (4,250 ft) is over one hundred miles to the southwest. There is low lake country to the south and west of Katahdin, and lowlands extending east to the Atlantic and north to the Saint Lawrence Seaway in Canada.

At the summer solstice and vernal and autumnal equinoxes, Katahdin is the first place in the United States mainland to receive sunlight in the morning.

Katahdin is part of a laccolith (an intrusion of magma underground) that formed in the Acadian orogeny, when an island arc collided with eastern North America approximately 400 million years ago. On the sides of Katahdin are four glacial cirques carved into the granite by alpine glaciers and in these cirques behind moraines and eskers are several picturesque ponds.

In Baxter State Park many outcrops of sedimentary rocks have striations, whereas Katahdin granite and Traveler rhyolite lava have weathered surfaces on which striations are commonly not preserved. Bedrock surfaces of igneous rocks which have been buried by glacial sediments and only recently exposed have well preserved striations, as in the vicinity of Ripogenus Dam. Several outcrops of sedimentary rocks along the Patten Road show striations, especially on the north side of the road at Hurricane Deck. A few outcrops near the Pattern Road just north of Horse Mountain are striated as are several outcrops of sedimentary rocks along the road from Trout Brook Farm northward to Second Lake Matagamon.

Fauna include black bear, deer and moose as well as swarms of bloodthirsty black flies (a sort of midge) and mosquitos in the spring. Among the birds are Bicknell's Thrush and various songbirds and raptors. The mountain has its own indigenous butterfly related to an Arctic type. The flora include pine, spruce, fir, hemlock, beech, maple, birch, aspen, and diapensia.

As the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail and southern terminus of the International Appalachian Trail, Katahdin is a popular hiking and backpacking destination and the centerpiece of Baxter State Park. Baxter State Park is open year round, though strictly regulated in winter. The overnight camping season is from May 15th to October 15th each year. Capacity limits have been placed on day use parking at the trailheads to minimize the overuse of trails.

Knife Edge

The most famous hike to the summit goes along Knife Edge, commonly misnamed "Knife's Edge", which traverses the ridge between Pamola Peak and Baxter Peak. The mountain has claimed over 20 lives in the past 40 years, mostly from exposure in bad weather and falls from the Knife Edge. The Knife Edge is closed during periods of high wind.[gallery columns="4" orderby="post_name"]   _________________________________________101 Links For More info got to: http://www.KatahdinCam.com/ http://www.peakware.com/peaks.html?pk=281 http://www.baxterstateparkauthority.com/ http://www.katahdinmaine.com/ http://www.naturalbornhikers.com/Katahdin/MountKatahdin.htm http://peakbagger.com/peak.aspx?pid=6820