Sporting Camps & Wilderness Lodges

In the 1890s, only 50 years after the County was founded, the Bangor and Aroostook Railroad began carrying Boston’s wealthy elite to the Maine woods, and the Aroostook sporting camp tradition was born. Sporting camps were, and still are, a haven for fishermen and hunters: a place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city, to make new friends and trade tall tales of sporting exploits, to eat like a king, and to rest weary bones in comfort in Maine’s most remote places. Nowadays, sporting camps also offer peace and adventure (depending on what you’re looking for) to hikers, nature enthusiasts, families, paddlers, artists, and others.

A “traditional” sporting camp is one that offers a full American plan, where guests come together in a main lodge to eat meals and socialize as a group. While the original “In the Maine Woods” guidebooks published by the railroad between 1900 and 1936 advertise well over 50 camps in Aroostook over the years, perhaps a dozen of these still operate in the County. At its core, a traditional sporting camp is a unique style of lodging; typically tucked into wonderfully-remote area, it is much more than a hotel, but also different from a B&B. Staff (often registered Maine guides) and guests typically interact more closely at a sporting camp than other styles of lodging, sharing secrets about this fishing hole or that, guiding guests on hikes and hunts, and chatting during meals and in the evenings. At a traditional sporting camp, the saying “when you’re here, you’re family,” often rings true.

Many more Aroostook sporting camps now follow the model of offering only self-catering (often called “housekeeping”) cabins, where guests are responsible for either cooking their own meals or traveling to restaurants, bypassing the social aspect that defined the tradition in its heyday. This style of sporting camp is perfect for those hunters, anglers, and adventure-seekers who want to be on their own schedule but still stay in some of the most beautiful places in the state.

Information about several Aroostook sporting camps (and more throughout Maine) can be found with the Maine Sporting Camp Association.


Related Stories
146
You Might Like
Loading...
Events
6/21/24 6/22/24

State Of Maine Soap Box Derby Race

State Of Maine Soap Box Derby Racing! The "Thrill Of The Hill" At Community Park, Houlton Maine. ...

6/21/24 6/23/24

Glad Midsommar Festival

Celebrate the Swedish Colony traditions in New Sweden, Maine!

6/22/24

Guided Tour of the Presque Isle Air Museum and former Presque Isle Army Air Base aboard Molly the Trolley

Take a tour of Presque Isle Air Museum and the former Presque Isle Air Base aboard Molly the Trolley

6/22/24

Presque Isle Farmers' Market

The Presque Isle Farmers Market at the Riverside Park in the beautiful Star City takes place rain or...

6/22/24

Houlton Community Market

The Houlton Community Market in Historic Market Square is a bustle of activity every Saturday...

View All >
Deals
6/5/24 8/1/24

Magic Cabin Rental 1/2 Mile from East Grand Lake

You and the whole family are invited to exscape and relax in Maine's Aroostook County. Weston, Maine is set in the middle of the East Grand Lake Region and water activities abound along with great hikes, fishing, hunting, and festivals - you'll only be...

6/5/24 8/1/24

Arnold Brook, Kayak Rental

At Perception Of Aroostook, we are passionate about outdoor life that is unique to Aroostook County. We want to offer a new perception on life and nature. We aim to provide the tools necessary to have a successful experience at any level of expertise. ...

View All >