Foliage Faves: Blair Hill Inn

Vermont gets all the press—but it also gets gazillions of leaf peepers. Here’s a place where you can enjoy the colors without the crowds. (The first in my leaf-peeper foliage faves postings)

Native Mainah

No it’s not easy to get to, but that’s what makes it so worth the effort. Greenville edges Moosehead Lake, that giant blue Rorschach blot in the wilds of northern Maine. It’s the frontier town before tar gives way to dirt, civilization to wilderness. Shops sell all manor of moosey merchandise, fishing and hunting are big biz. Set high on a hillside, just outside of town is a genteel country inn, the splurge-worthy Blair Hill Inn, an oasis of comfort, with excellent service and fabulous breakfasts.

And the views? Stupendous, especially during peak foliage, when the color-dappled mountains surrounding the 40-mile-long lake are reflected in its waters. This is God’s Country, and if you don’t believe me, mosey up to Kokadjo (population, not many) where a giant sign proclaims just that.

The region is laced with hiking trails and with opportunities for boating and paddling and moose spotting. Treat yourself to a cruise on the Katahdin, a retrofitted, early 20th-century boat that was previously used in in the lumbering industry. Or take a foliage flight with Currier’s Flying Service, a great way to view the cliffs of Kineo. Or book a moose safari or other adventure with Northwoods Outfitters.

Maynard's in Maine lodge

Now, if the Blair Hill Inn is out of range budget wise, not to worry, Greenville has plenty of wallet-friendly spots, too. Chalet Moosehead is a motel that’s right on the lakefront; the Pleasant Street Inn is a B&B that’s walkable to everything intown, including the lake; in nearby Rockwood is Maynard’s in Maine, an old-time classic—very rustic (in the Maine sense of the word, not the New York sense) lodge and cabins, with a restaurant (see photo) It’s not for everybody, but I love this place, and it’s pet friendly.

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