December 21, 2012

Resupply Options in Maine's 100 Mile Wilderness

The 100 Mile Wilderness is an area in Maine near the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail. The section is renowned for its lack of town access (just unfrequented back-roads), meaning that many people enter carrying all of the food they'll need... and the general recommendation is to plan on taking 8-10 days. Even dehydrated food gets awfully heavy when you pack in more than a few days--and even more so when you account for the boost in caloric needs of a hiker. To a northbound thru-hiker with 2000 miles worth of leg muscles built up before reaching the 100 Mile Wilderness, the section probably wouldn't seem very intimidating. But for most everyone else (including southbounders like we were), it's an intimidating prospect. When I was doing my initial research, searching for a way to not start our hike carrying 20lbs of food or to, you know, starve, I found that there is there are some wonderful people near the trail who will (for a fee) bring half of your food to the mid-way point of the Wilderness.

There may well be more options, but here are the ones I considered (info is from Spring 2012):

The AT Lodge

-Resupply drop-off--56 mi @ Jo-Mary Rd (crosses AT)
-Will pack out your trash
-Call Paul (Ole Man) for rates

100 Mile Wilderness Adventures & Outfitters

-Resupply drop-off--56 mi @ Jo-Mary Rd (crosses AT)
-Will pack out your trash
-Mid-Wilderness Resupply @ $25 (guests) $35 (non-guests)

**The main difference between the two above is their location--which matters if you need to stay somewhere before starting/after ending your hike. We picked the AT Lodge because they're in Millinocket, the closest town to the northern end of the AT, and they could shuttle us into Baxter State Park to start our hike. I was just looking at the 100 MW A&O site, and they've recently moved to Monson, the town at the southern end of the 100 MW (I think they used to be closer to Bangor...). If you're unsure of which to pick, I'd suggest calling/emailing each and seeing who you get along with better. Seriously--hostel owners are pretty involved with the hikers who pass through. Better to start (or end) well!

White House Landing

-Hostel & Store--45.7 mi: 0.9 mi E Mahar Tote Rd
-Use air horn to be picked up by boat (before dark)
-Bunkhouse: $39 per person - includes Breakfast, Shower, Towel and Pillowcase
-Semi-Private Room: $49 per person - includes Breakfast, Shower, Towel and Pillowcase
-Private Cabin (by reservation - 2 days/2 person minimum): $45 per person - includes Shower, Towel & Linens (Meals Extra)
-Accept cash, Visa and Mastercard
**White House Landing SHOULD NOT be counted on as a true resupply as much as an emergency resupply. Unless, of course, you're ok with spending $5 on a pop-tart (I'm exaggerating... sort of).**

To read a professional point of view of how best to approach the 100 Mile Wilderness click here, or for our on-the-trail accounts click herehere, and here.


  1. So how do you manage those mid-wilderness resupplies? Do you have to say I will be at Jo-Mary Road at such and such a time on such and such a day? I'm worried about setting any sort of deadline, missing it, and not getting my food.

  2. That's a great question--I was worried about the same thing at first. Here's how the drop works: When we arrived at the AT Lodge, the Ole Man gave us a large bucket with a lid that we filled with our resupply. He labeled the lid with our names and described where he would be hiding our bucket--he's done this a lot, so he was able to give us a pretty detailed description. A day or two after dropping us off at Baxter, he drove the bucket out to Jo-Mary road and hid it. I was a little worried about this, but he said he's never had a problem with bears or people taking the food (ours was fine). So as a long way to answer your question, you don't need a time estimate aside from your food planning (we brought 2 extra days' worth and ended up needing it). Hope that helps!