Sledding, singing, skiing, and that is just this weekend !!!

Imagine coming from a small town in northern Maine and being the only Maine athlete representing the United  State of America in the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia…….well Russell Currier is doing just that.   Russell is a Caribou High School graduate from Stockholm, Maine  and trained at the Maine Winter Sports Center.   For those of us that remember Russell as a youngster, it has been an amazing transition culminating in being a participant in this year’s  Winter Olympics.   No one can comprehend the sacrifices that these athletes make to get to this point nor can we appreciate the highs and lows year after year with successes and not so great performances.   But beyond Russell it is about how small communities rally around their own and provide amazing support and encouragement.   Russell is in an extremely competitive and challenging event with the best competitors from all over the world…….so I wish Russell the best……and podium or not……commend him for his commitment and hard work.   I have worked with kids my whole life and one thing that I try to instill in them is that it doesn’t matter where you come from, it is what you have in your heart that counts……it is about believing in yourself……and about believing you can achieve goals if you believe you can……..I believe Russell is an excellent role model of all young people in The County…….and we wish him well.










But if you don’t get NBC Sports, which I don’t, and you are wondering what else to do this weekend……well  the Northern Star Competition is underway with three great venues this weekend with the  Northern Aroostook Competition, Friday, February 7th at 7:00 pm at the Fox Auditorium in Fort Kent, the Central Aroostook Competition Saturday, February 8th at 7:00 pm at the Presque Isle Middle School, and the Southern Aroostook Competition, Sunday, February 9th at 2:00 pm at the Houlton High School Auditorium.   You will get a break for a couple of weeks but then you will have to stop by The FINALE, Sunday, February 23rd at 2:00pm at the Caribou Performing Arts Center.

Ok music isn’t your thing the Andy Santerre Sno Run will be held this Saturday, February 8 with a 5K walk/run beginning at 9:30 a.m., a 30 mile vintage sled ride at 9:45 a.m. and of course the 100 mile ride getting underway at 10 a.m.  All registration and starts will occur at Griffeth Ford/Lincoln/ Mitsubishi off US Rt 1 or Rt 89 in Caribou.

If the wife and the kids don’t wish to snowmobile…..well there is the Downtown Caribou Ski Fest Saturday beginning at 10 a.m. with games and fun for kids of all ages and racing down Sweden St…….yup by 7 a.m. Saturday morning downtown Caribou will be transformed into a winter wonderland complete with a fun park for kids on skiis.

Oh and before I forget……the snowmobilers will have an awesome weekend because there is not a bad trail in the house………if you don’t snowmobile don’t bother reading anymore…..if you do…….hope you have a great weekend !

  • Look for a reroute on ITS 83 around Oakfield.
  • There are hundreds of deer everywhere…..please use caution
  • Keep in mind that there are some long distances between gas stations so look at the reroutes and plan accordingly
  • There is an active logging operation near  ITS 81 the border trail on the Limestone section  and on the Swedes’s Trail  on the ITS 83 end (east) so please proceed slowly and with caution

Trail Info

ITS 85     Everything is open on this one and groomed to perfection.    Great rides but again, lots of deer so use caution.  Also heading north St Francis has their 92A open to ITS 85.  Also 71A is open west of 85 between Ashland and Ox Bow.

 ITS  83    We still have a reroute in the Oakfield area.  Watch for Trail 64, Trail 61 and the Town Trail as that will be the new reroute for now.    Moving north keep in mind that the Andy Santerre 100 mile ride will be using portions of ITS 83 from New Sweden into Caribou in the early afternoon and the vintage stock will be using sections of 83 between Caribou and Washburn.  Lots of deer around 83 in Caribou and 83B so use caution.

ITS  81    The Andy Santerre Ride 100 mile will be using 81 north from Limestone to Van Buren in the morning beginning around 10 a.m. so keep that in mind when you set out.   Outside of that 81 is in good shape with everyone out grooming except the portion heading west of the ITS 105 intersection near Squa Pan is not open so plan ahead…ITS 105 and Rt 75 have been opened.

 ITS 92      Perfect conditions here with all projects reporting grooming including Rt 92 A that runs between 92 and 85 from Carter Brook towards St. John.    And yes the trail does connect to the Glazier Lake Loop……just a hiccup in the map.

 ITS  90   Snow is back in the eastern sections so fields are in good shape.  No reported problem areas and everyone has been out grooming this week.   Deer also reported in several areas on this trail so use caution.

 ITS 88    Groomed this week.  Light traffic.  Great ride with no problem areas reported.

ITS 86    Ox Bow and the Meduxneakeag folks have been out and the trail is in the best shape of the winter.  Again….lots of deer around so bring a camera and slow down.     71D is groomed into  Grand Seboeis Lake and the lake is marked.  

ITS 105   Is open to the 81 intersection but has limited grooming on the Squa Pan end until maybe next week but north….no problems

ITS 120   Beautiful ride……..kudos to the groomer ops they have done a great job.

Rt 100     Caswell will be grooming to the Rt 89 intersection.  

Rt 89  Now open between ITS 83/90 in Caribou north to the Rt 100 intersection only.   It is NOT open to the 94 intersection but may be next week.     Caution should be used on the river crossing.   89 heading east to Limestone  will be used as part of the Andy Santarre 100 mile ride in the morning.

Rt 94  NOW OPEN.   Van Buren was out and has this trail reopened.  Maybe a bit skimpy on the snow until we get a few flurries but open.

Rt 79 to Long Lake off ITS 105 has been groomed.  The lake is marked and there is plenty of ice but please when night riding pay attention and look for vehicles and ice shacks.   Grand Isle has groomed 98B toward the Country Club.

Daigle and Soldier Pond   everything groomed by the weekend including the Eagle Lake trail

On The Social Side

Meduxneakeag Ramblers Breakfast Saturdays 6-9 a.m. at the clubhouse

Washburn Trailrunners Breakfast /Lunch Saturdays 7 a.m.-3p.m.  Sunday 7 a.m.-noon at the clubhouse

Presque Isle Snowmobile Club Stew Nights   Fridays  5-7 p.m. at the clubhouse

St Francis Sno Angels Saturday Meals  …homecooked meals….stop by off ITS 92

February 8-9  Caribou Downtown Ski Festival

February 8      10th Annual Andy Santarre Sno-Run  call 207-498-6431 for more info

February 8      Fort Kent SnoRiders Steak/Chicken Supper   4-8 p.m. Lonesome Pine Ski Lodge off ITS 85   Steak $18/ Chicken $15/ Kids 10 and under $10

February 9      Fort Fairfield Club Breakfast  7-10 a.m. at the clubhouse off the Strickland Rd.

February 9      Grand Isle Club Breakfast at the Grand Isle Community Center 7-11 a.m.

February 14-16  Moosestompers Weekend in Houlton    with outdoor activities for the whole family.  There will be a bonfire on Friday night and a snowmobile parade in the park that same night and don’t forget the Moosestompers Ball Saturday. 

February 15    Caribou Snowmobile Club Hot Dog Roast   ITS 105 Stockholm  starting 10 a.m.

February 15  USCC Cross Country Racing Series   assessable off ITS 85 between Ft Kent & Frenchville  Racing starts at 9:30 a.m. and will run through late afternoon.

February 15    Portage Lakers Pie Auction   7 p.m. at Deans

February 28-March 7            Youth/Junior World Championship Biathalon Nordic Heritage Ctr., Presque Isle


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Kathy Mazzuchelli

About Kathy Mazzuchelli

Kathy Mazzuchelli is superintendant of the Caribou Parks and Recreation Department where she has worked for 38 years. An avid snowmobiler, Mazzuchelli’s first sled was a 1968 Polaris Mustang back in the days when groomed trails were done with snowmobiles, bedsprings and some pretty feisty folks.