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View Full Version : BSP - Marston Trail parking lot on a Saturday



marty
06-16-2006, 05:10 AM
Hi all - We are heading up to Baxter State Park on a Friday night in mid July, arriving in Millinocket around midnight. We are thinking of doing the Marston Trail the next day.

Does anyone know what time the Slide Dam parking lot for the Marston Trail fills up on a Saturday in mid July?

Many thanks,
Marty

Tom Rankin
06-16-2006, 06:20 AM
Hi all - We are heading up to Baxter State Park on a Friday night in mid July, arriving in Millinocket around midnight. We are thinking of doing the Marston Trail the next day.

Does anyone know what time the Slide Dam parking lot for the Marston Trail fills up on a Saturday in mid July?
Don't drive that far only to be turned away! Get to the gate by 5:00 AM, and take a nap.

MichaelJ
06-16-2006, 06:52 AM
My recollection of 4th of July weekend last year was that at 6:30am when we got there, we were the only car. Or maybe there was 1 other. BobandGeri?

sli74
06-16-2006, 06:57 AM
I have never seen that parking lot at capacity, though 2 of the 4 times I have been to that side of the park has been in winter ;)

I would say, you could maybe push your luck with that particular parking lot, BUT like Tom says, better safe than sorry, you can always nap in the car at the trailhead. I say if you get there at 6 am, you can drive straight through and do the nap thing at the trailhead.

sli74

bobandgeri
06-16-2006, 07:07 AM
My recollection of 4th of July weekend last year was that at 6:30am when we got there, we were the only car. Or maybe there was 1 other. BobandGeri?

Michael is correct - even when we returned in the afternoon there was only 3 or 4 cars there. Whatever you do, keepin mind that the drive from the gate to the parking lot will take longer than you think - it's a windy dirt road - with lots of great views and most likely moose to look at on the way in - plan for plenty of time.

Nate
06-16-2006, 07:32 AM
In my experience, by far the most popular mountain at Baxter is Katahdin (and rightfully so). On a summer weekend the Roaring Brook parking lot will fill up early, and the parking lots at Abol and Katahdin Stream have a strong chance of filling up too. However, beyond those three, I have never encountered a full parking lot anywhere else in the park, even on summer weekends.

Plus, it should be noted that with the higher gas prices, that might affect the number of people going up to the park. For July Fourth Weekend last year, it seems like overall the park was less crowded because of this. If the weather isn't the best, that will decrease the number of people visiting as well.

Tom Rankin
06-16-2006, 08:08 AM
All of these are good points, and I remember that side of the park being lightly used. But I also remember getting there early and being able to see 2 moose grazing in a pond. The later it gets, and the more cars go by, the more likely they will be to disappear for the day.

marty
06-16-2006, 10:28 AM
Thanks all for the excellent advice! This will help my friends and I sort through the many complicated logistics that accompany doing a trip to Baxter.

Regards,
Marty

Kevin Rooney
06-16-2006, 10:39 AM
Will echo the others - have never seen the Marston parking lot full.

Nate
07-05-2006, 06:24 PM
Subsequent to my previous post on this thread I visited Baxter, where I found that the incoming traffic didn't seem to be the least affected by the high gas prices. I arrived at the south gate at five in the morning on a Saturday, and I was the eighteenth car in line. Most of the people entering the park at that hour were bound for Roaring Brook.

Considering how many people were probably turned away once that parking was full, I guess I should feel a little bad that the first thing I did when I parked there was take a nap. Then again, after driving all night, I figure I earned it. After all, I didn't want to be too knackered before my big hike up South Turner later that morning. :D

kamoore63
07-06-2006, 03:29 PM
I was at the Slide Dam trailhead this past Sat. and there was only one other car there - and this on a day when the Roaring Brook parking lot was full early.