Today we begin the Wilderness Canoe Expedition Semester, our 4-week canoe guide training course. It is our 58th long-term program, and our 24th year. Spring has been slow to arrive to Aroostook county, but the snow has retreated and we can finally drive into the field school (it is deep snow that stops us, not mud). The raven family that lives in the big white pine tree next to our headquarters is back, and the babies are making a lot of noise around the clock. The white-throated sparrows are filling the warming air with their calls, the ruffed grouse are drumming and the peepers are filling the evening with their calls.
As life returns to the land, it’s a glorious time to be outside.
May is an amazing month in northern Maine, as the spring high waters make all of the old canoe routes passable. This, combined with the fact that the bugs are still a few weeks from emerging, delicious spring greens are popping up everywhere and brook trout are all over the cold rivers, makes May one of the best months for living outside around here.
We’ll have to put up with some cold weather, cold water, possible spring snow, and muddy, washed out woods roads, but it is a small price to pay to experience May on the waters of northern Maine.