Nordic Heritage Center Ski Trails

Trailhead

From Presque Isle, follow ME Routes 163/165 (Fort Fairfield Road) north and east out of town. Continue on ME Route 167 north for about 1.5 miles past its split from ME Route 163. The entrance to the Nordic Heritage will be on the lefthand side of the road. There are two trailheads. The main trailhead is up the driveway at the Welcome Center next to the main parking lot. The other is at the beginning of the driveway. There is a kiosk and additional parking here. This is also the Pet Loop trailhead.

Alternatively, coming from Fort Fairfield, at the intersection of US Route 1A and ME Route 167, follow ME Route 167 south and west 3.3 miles to the Nordic Heritage Center entrance on the righthand side of the road.

Description

The Nordic Heritage Center has an extensive ski trail network with eight primary trails and/or loops, several of which have multiple cutoffs which allow for varied distance and difficulty. These trails range from beginner to advanced and flow through a maturing hardwood forest where wildlife sightings are frequent. While these trails may have been built to test the world's top Biathletes, there are many easier trail options for beginners and intermediates. The venue also has over two miles of lighted terrain for night skiing. There is also a Pet Loop and the lodge is open to the public until 10pm. Rental skis and snowshoes are available in the Welcome Center. This facility is free and open to the public. Please consider making a donation to help cover operating costs or becoming a member of the Nordic Heritage Sport Club.

Field Loop (0.2 miles, easy):

Ski through the rolling fields of the Gallagher Farm. The length and location of this trail may vary in the fields. The trail is also pet friendly, but please use a leash and pick-up-your-poop. Please obey posted signs. The trail can be accessed from the Fort Fairfield Loop or the Roadside Trailhead via the Gallagher Access trail. Proceed to the right to immediately access the trail. Caution: expect two-way traffic on this route. A large kiosk by the end of the driveway denotes the trailhead. Pets are permitted at this entrance.

Fort Fairfield Loop (3.1 miles moderate to advanced):

This trail is well known for its steep climbs and descents, however the Coach's Cutoffs can be used to avoid the most challenging downhills, creating a nice intermediate loop. The trail has many cutoffs that are used for the Biathlon World Cup. The trail can be accessed directly from the Welcome Center. This trail is lighted to the top of the first large climb and back, totaling 0.6 miles.

Gallagher Loop (1.6 miles, moderate):

This undulating trail winds between rock outcrops offering beautiful views of the mixed forest and farm fields to the East. The trail is also pet friendly, but please use a leash and pick-up-your-poop. Please obey posted signs. The trail can be accessed from the Fort Fairfield Loop or the Roadside Trailhead via the Gallagher Access trail. A large kiosk by the end of the driveway denotes the trailhead.  Pets are permitted at this entrance.

Outer Rotary Loop (1.3 miles, easy to moderate):

This trail branches off of the Rotary Loop, rolling and twisting around the top of the hill to south of the lodge. The first half is lighted in winter. There is also a beginner cutoff for very inexperienced skiers. The trail can be accessed directly from the Welcome Center.

Over the Mountain Trail (1.0 mile one-way, moderate to advanced):

Climb steeply from the Presque Isle Loop with a gradual descent to the Fort Fairfield Loop or climb gradually and descend steeply in the reverse direction. This trail links the two warming huts and offers nices views of the Aroostook Valley. The trail can be accessed from the Presque Isle Loop shortly after the warming hut or the Fort Fairfield Loop next to the other warming hut.

Presque Isle Loop (3.1 miles, moderate to advanced):

Branching off the Rotary Loop, this short trail winds through a hardwood forest of predominantly beech trees. The trail also passes the Presque Isle Warming Hut. The trail ends at the Biathlon Range next to the Lodge. The trail can be accessed from the Welcome Center or the Lodge via the Rotary Loop.

Rotary Loop (0.6 miles, easy):

The Rotary Loop is the beginner trail that circles the lodge, stadium, and shooting range areas. It is also lighted in the winter for evening skiing. In summer months there is pavement to provide rollerskiing opportunities.The trail can be accessed directly from the Lodge or the Welcome Center via the end of the Fort Fairfield Loop.

Terrain Park Loop (0.6 miles, easy):

This trail utilizes the open space next to the Terrain Park to provide additional beginner terrain and night skiing. Disabled skiers can also use it to access the stadium and lodge. The jumps in the terrain park can accessed from this trail. The trail can be accessed directly from the Welcome Center, take an immediate left off the Fort Fairfield Loop after crossing under the pedestrian bridge. The trail can also be accessed form the bottom of the Rotary Loop and the top of the Outer Rotary Loop.

More Information

Walking and hiking are permitted during the summer months.  Only skiing is permitted on groomed trails in winter.  Pets are allowed on the Pet Loop only.  Snowshoers please use the singletrack trails for snowshoeing.  Winter lighted trails are lit from 4pm to 9pm.  Thank you!

Nordic Heritage Sports Club
Nate Berry
PO Box 4015
Presque Isle
Maine
04769

Photos

Photo credit: Maine Winter Sports Center
Nordic Heritage Center Women's Ski Day
Photo credit: Maine Winter Sports Center
Photo credit: Becky Shay
Nordic Heritage Center Road Entrance Sign
Photo credit: Becky Shay
Photo credit: Peter Freeman
Nordic Heritage Center Lodge Ready for 2011 Fat Tire Festival
Photo credit: Peter Freeman
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors
Roadside Trailhead
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors
Welcome Center
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors
Grand Stands
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors
Fort Fairfield Warming Hut
Photo credit: Aroostook Outdoors