Attendees of the 29th Annual Meeting

On May 19-21, a group of Maine IAT members, friends, and board members gathered at Mt. Chase Lodge for the 29th Annual Meeting. After getting checked in and settled, we were treated to a delicious dinner and a screening of Defending the Dark, presented by Nancy Hathaway from Dark Sky Maine. The film is available on Maine Public now, and you can watch it yourself by visiting this link. We intended to follow the film screening with stargazing, but an overcast sky put the kibosh on that plan.

Upon awakening and having breakfast we jumped right into the meeting. Don Hudson presented the IAT Year in Review, which was followed by updates from Mark Wimmer and Christopher ‘Dewey’ Loft of Kathahdin Woods and Waters. A Maine Conservation Corps crew will be working on the IAT all summer long, and their work will include re-decking the bridge over Little Spring Brook, re-building and re-benching the treadway where necessary, and installing signs and new trail ‘tags’ where necessary. The Deasey Fire Cab will be assessed this summer for future restoration. Refurbished outhouses and lean-to work are scheduled for 2024. We will post a list of trail work opportunities for IAT volunteers soon.


After a short break, Sam Deeran provided an update on the work of Friends of Kathahdin Woods and Waters. We were also joined by Natural Resource Director Nava Tabak of Baxter State Park who talked about the full range of inventory and monitoring projects in Baxter State Park. There are a handful of opportunities for citizen scientists to contribute to this work in Baxter. Don Hudson wrapped up the morning with a presentation on the Alpine Plants of Kt’aadn and Beyond, which you can see up on the IAT YouTube channel.

Afternoon activities included a hike of Mt. Chase, a wildflower walk in KW&W, or visit the Fiddlers and Fiddleheads Festival at the Patten Lumbermen’s Museum. The wildflower walk was led by Eric and Elaine Hendrickson, and it was a beautiful day for it. We saw lots of trillium (painted and red), yellow and purple violets, jack-in-the-pulpit, Carolina spring beauties, and many other wildflowers. It was a bit buggy but we made it out alive!

It was also a beautiful day to climb Mt. Chase, and from the summit one can see the full expanse of the national monument and Baxter State Park. A nice breeze at the top helped keep the black flies at bay. Neotropical migratory songbirds are returning, and we heard Yellow-rumped Warblers, Black & White Warblers, Yellow Warblers, a Swainson’s Thrush, and a Blackburnian Warbler––that perched neatly at the end of a leafless branch for everyone to view.

Will Richard

After dinner, Will Richard gave a presentation called The Maritime Far Northeast – Maine to Greenland -A Story of People and Place, which included dozens of pictures over his many years in Greenland and the Maritime Far Northeast. A lot of International Appalachian Trail history was scattered throughout the presentation. It can be viewed here.


The Annual Meeting weekend is always a good opportunity for old friends and new to get together, learn about the history of the trail, and discuss what might come next. Now the planning starts for our 30th. We hope you’ll join us next year!

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