In the shadows of Mt. Abraham ("Mt. Abram" to locals) and Sugarloaf Mountain, home to the eponymous ski resort, Kingfield is "real" New England, dotted with white clapboard churches. The pretty Carrabassett River slices the village and flows over a dam downtown, creating a great swimming spot below the Route 16 bridge. Small pullouts mark swimming holes along Route 27 as it flows north along the rock-strewn river through Carrabassett Valley (also the name of the neighboring town) to the resort. On the other side of the waterway, the 6.6.-mile Narrow Gauge Pathway rail-trail wends through the narrow, steep-walled valley. The path was first cleared in the late 1800s for a narrower-than-standard railway that transported timber and tourists. Today it's part of an extensive and growing mountain biking network and one of many activities along the 47-mile State Route 27 Maine Scenic Byway ( from Kingfield to the remote Canadian border crossing at Coburn Gorge. Fantastic backcountry recreation awaits in the northern half of the drive around Eustis and Stratton. Near these small recreation hubs, the state's 36,000-acre Bigelow Preserve ( takes in the entire Bigelow Range and borders 20,000-acre Flagstaff Lake.


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