In the middle of the Maine woods, what really matters most in life becomes pretty obvious.
The simple cabin that is your home away from home for the get away experience is solid. Small, with a sleeping loft, bunks and usually only one, possible two rooms total. Nothing palatial, pedantic, gaudy. Made of log. Sometimes t-111 panels, vinyl siding or board and batten design. Cedar shingles or even tar paper. Maybe asphalt shingles for exterior walls because all they had. What occured at the Maine woods camps, cabins built years ago by sportsmen who long ago woke up dead. Are gone.
Not a lot of windows. Always a central wood stove. Maybe an extra antique cook stove or end heater to supply the only heat. To have a fresh pot of coffee always hot and ready. Food at camp is served in warm, heaping large portions. Under gas lights. And always old favorite recipes used to create what’s on the camp menu. Year after year. Roasts, baked beans, chili, home made bread and biscuits. Pies, squares, cookies. Along with game shot fresh from the woods. Or fish angled, hooked, caught in nearby streams, lakes, ponds.
Recreation besides the trails around the Maine camp includes outdoor horseshoe competitions.
Inside card playing from poker to cribbage and everything in between. Rainy days are special and around the wood stove. Music in the background. Sunshine causes the camp to be be vacant. As the reason to be at camp, the outdoor fresh air is tapped into, enjoyed completely. Year after year with practiced rituals. Making never fade memories. New generations introduced to the woods camp in Maine experience.
Not just fall hunting trips wearing camo green, brown or simple blaze orange.
Not just during summer blue skies and warm temperatures. But year round. Winter Maine snow sled trips where the sound of the wind in the pines and the crackling fire, the glow of the dancing flames help you drift off to sleep. And causes you to wake energized and relaxed at the same time. But laying in bed thinking, pondering, caught up in the special space in the Maine woods. Because no mowing lawns, no changing the car oil, no clean up puttering around the primary residence. Dipping into the job jar “honey do list” not on the agenda this weekend. Or seven day span centered around just total outdoor recreation, seasonal sporting passions.
A substantial door to discourage crime but the structure is located in an area of near nil for misdeeds.
Not the target of theft, a break in. Because of the not so easy access. Not much of value in the sparse, high mileage furnishings of casts offs from home. And respect by others in the woods for the base camp much like their own. Kept pretty much like you left it after the last outing. In an area not zero for crime incidents, hanky panky. But awfully close to it.
The family tradition members or bunch of sporting buddies that frequent the Maine woods camp have photos to share. Stories to tell. About game that got away. Snow sleds that broke down on the way to town to visit the nearest refreshment center. Jeeps that needed winching, wagon jacks to lift and wedge log ends or rocks under the muddy wheels to get to or from camp. Depending on the weather and the amount of natural rain water to deal with in twitch trails and skidder rutted roadways.
Trails long abandoned, growing up to brush.
But once a buzz of activity a few years back. Used by wood cutters to crawl in, knock down and drag out sawed, fallen trees of mixed soft and hardwoods. To yards cleared for wood processing. To create the opening, clearing site for the simple Maine woods camp. Plus the little shed, shack out back with the moon slit carved in the door. Visited by all. Stocked, supplied with a couple old Uncle Henry’s Sell, Trade And Swap Guide copies. Or some old Field & Stream, maybe something a little racier for reading material. Maine, the living, lifestyle is simple, the people are not.