The Owl of Baxter State Park

Don't confuse this mountain with the bird! The Owl is actually a lonely peak just off of the Hunt Trail/Appalachian Trail. The mountain can be easily identified from Katahdin, as it displays a large cliff over Katahdin Stream. The mountain actually looks like a Great Horned Owl from Katahdin Stream Campground. Anyone can view the mountain, but it's a different story when you climb it and experience the view from it.

Me on the summit of The Owl.

To access the mountain, we had to follow the Hunt Trail to The Owl Trail. From here, the trail ascended gradually. It crossed a brook, and began to curve up the side of lower portion of the mountain. A small side trail leads to a restricted view.

The Hunt Trail from a lower ledge.

The trail is uneventful until it starts to go up. The trail ascends steeper, still viewless. The trail then emerged onto a rocky slope, with views looking across the cliff and over to the Hunt Trail, and the distant lakes.

The view from the slide.

The trail ascended the open slope, which included loose rocks and good views. The trail reentered the trees, and followed just above the cliffs, with only a few trees in between us and the cliff. The trail was steep, but it soon came to the west spur of The Owl, which offered very nice views over to the summit, and to Witherle Ravine.

Looking at Baxter Peak from the west spur.

The trail briefly entered the trees, then came out to the exposed summit. There was a very attractive view looking into Witherle Ravine from here. This ravine is where Katahdin Stream flows from, and it is also home to the tallest waterfall in New England, Katahdin Falls, which drops 800 feet.

The 280 foot drop of Katahdin Falls.

A grand view can be had from The Owl. Baxter Peak, Hamlin Peak, Barren Mountain, Mt.Coe, The Brothers, Sentinel Mountain, and the 100 Mile Wilderness can be seen. The Klondike and distant lakes could also be seen.

Barren Mountain, Doubletop Mountain, Mt.OJI, Mt.Coe, The Brothers, and Mt.Fort.

The ravine was so quiet that it sounded as though Katahdin Falls was right next to us. We could also clearly hear people on the Hunt Trail. We also had the small summit to ourselves. Luckily, we were the only people on the summit, because I would hate to be up on that small summit on a crowded day.

Looking at The Gateway and the Hunt Trail from the west spur.
The summit from the west spur.
The west spur from the summit.
The Northwest Plateau from The Owl.
Katahdin from The Owl.
Doubletop Mountain, and the distant hills and lakes of Maine.
The peaks of the 100 Mile Wilderness, and some of Pemadumcook Lake.

The Owl is worth the climb. If you don't feel like climbing all the way to Katahdin, or you want to do something different, The Owl is for you! This mountain is also on the 42 With A View list, which can be found on the top of my page. This mountain was definitely worth the effort, and it's worth your's too.


  1. Great description of the Owl, the views are amazing . Eddie and I climbed the Owl the day after we climbed Katahdin!

    1. As of now, it's my dad's favorite mountain, just because of the view!