Chip’s 150th Allagash Trip


Chip cooking and baking over open fire

This summer I surpassed my 150th trip down the Allagash river.  I have been keeping track of my trips on a beaver chewed walking stick since 1971 when I was an apprentice guide with my father and grandfather.  That stick has many holes drilled into it, in an orderly manner, but I must say it now resembles a dead tree that a Downy Woodpecker chased after a Spruce Beatle!  The trip started out like any other canoe trip down the Allagash Wilderness Waterway.  Rain on the drive in, giving way to a stiff headwind coming down the lake from the direction of our campsite.  The following morning was much better with the lake like glass as we paddled on toward Churchill Dam.  Here we were to portage our canoes to the down river side of the dam and load our gear into the ranger's truck to get shuttled around Chase Rapids.  While portaging my 20ft Old Town Guide wood canvas canoe, one of the trippers I was guiding drew my attention to the bulletin board where the waterway Rangers posted information such as weather reports, fire danger, water flow, etc.  There, tacked up like a "Wanted" poster in the old west was a picture of me, tumping a wannigan across some past portage, with a notice saying "If you see this guy...congratulate him on his 150th Allagash trip!"  Great guys, those rangers...