OK, let’s be real. Maine’s a pretty big state. And the part that we’re in? Well, that’s the part that they have to chop off and put on the side just so it can all fit on the Road Atlas page.
The map calls it “Northern Maine”, but around here, they just call it “up-state”.
Since Saturday was a perfect day for a drive, we set out to check out the Potato Blossom Festival and take a drive up Rte 1. All the way up Rte 1 – to the very northeastern most town in the USA –
Madawaska, ME. You knew that, right? (me neither!). But a little farther up the road was Fort Kent – home to “America’s First Mile” – the start of Route 1.
While we can’t say we’ve driven the whole length of Route 1, we now can say we’ve been to both ends –
That does count for something, right?
At any rate, it was a beautiful day for a drive, and we were not disappointed. I’ve already mentioned the potato fields, but the wildflowers along the edges of the fields were stunning!
I’m pretty sure this was a Catholic Church in Fort Kent –
Have you ever seen a steeple like that?
I believe it’s wrought iron –
and quite beautiful, I think!
We checked out the blockhouse in Fort Kent (home to the bloodless Aroostook War in 1839)
and walked along the Fish River that flows into the St. John River (the border between New Brunswick, CA and Maine).
There were beautiful canola fields –
a relatively new crop in Maine. I’m not very agriculturally savvy, so I don’t know all of the benefits of growing canola as an alternative to potatoes, but I do know those fields make for bursts of beautiful color in the landscape!
Bottom line – it was a great drive! This part of Maine is quite surprising to me. While I knew it would be different than the coast, I did not realize it was such a farming area. On our drive home (down Rte 11, if you want to check on the map at the top of the post) we traveled through heavily forested areas, much more what I was expecting.
Yep, I’m pretty happy we decided to come to Up-State Maine!
Hereare some more pictures of our drive and our quick visit to the Potato Blossom Festival if you have another minute or two!