Knife Edge, Helon Taylor

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 45.90440°N / 68.9228°W
Additional Information Route Type: Hiking
Additional Information Time Required: Half a day
Additional Information Difficulty: class 3 hike
Sign the Climber's Log


Thruway I 95 north from Bangor to Medway 60 miles. West from Medway to Millinocket on ME 11 about 12 miles. Northwest on Millinocket Road from Millinocket. Togue Pond about 20 miles later. Park Entrance-get in line by dawn. Take right hand gravel fork to Roaring Brook. Park there about 8 miles north of Togue Pond.

Flanders on the Notch

Route Description

Leave early from Roaring Brook Ranger Station (1480 ft)after signing in as a courtesy those who might have to assist you. Signage is good. Walk about 3.2 miles to the top of Pamola on the Helon Taylor trail-class 1 some II. Top of Pamola 4920 feet. Vertical gain 3600 feet. Get view of Chimney Peak and Knife Edge. Walk off (descend)the south side of Pamola-goes to class 3 at the Pamola- Chimney Peak notch-about 100 feet deep. Stay left and make sure nobody drops a rock on you. Face inward so you can place your feet. Enjoy the top of the notch and avoid rare plants. Wait till no one is above you. Ascend Chimney peak on it's left side(south with the big lakes) away from Basin-class III. Get to the top and move to basin side with exposure. Walk along with large lakes on the left and basin on the right. Ascend to South Peak about a 400 vertical gain. Has a rock shelter on top. Walk to Baxter Peak being careful of the smaller rocks-ankle twisters. Knife edge from Pamola to Baxter is 1.1 miles. Exposure similar to Narrows of Longs Peak Keyhole at some points. Chimney Notch is trickier than the preceding. Wind has blown folks down the walls before. Ice and mist make it serious. 

Time of Knife Edge-

an hour- more if somebody gets stuck in front of you.

Essential Gear

Good shoes- sticky approach or boots that are not too clumsy. Pile and shell if there is wind,glove/hat for cold. Water treatment pumps. Good tasting water along Roaring Brook and at Chimney pond. No water on Knife edge. Snow possible in any month. Storms less routine than out west. Frontal storms and local storms are just as nasty and have heavy winds. I did once see a 3 day gale come unannounced out of clear sky.

Miscellaneous Info

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