A rainbow covers a daytime moon as it arcs into a forested mountain ridge after a storm.
Boundary Mountain Preserve A rainbow arches over Caribou Mountain in the 9,608-acre newly-conserved forest. © Mark Berry/TNC

Places We Protect

Boundary Mountains Preserve

Maine

A remote mountain forest provides important habitat for wildlife.

Boundary Mountains Preserve is an important link in a large swath of contiguous forest located adjacent to over 22,000 acres of public lands in Quebec. The preserve extends a corridor of permanently conserved lands northward to a total of over 260,000 acres, representing a key link in a major pathway of ecological connection from the White Mountains in New Hampshire through the western Maine Mountains and Quebec borderlands and beyond.

The preserve includes a healthy, mature mountain forest, featuring 3,648-foot Caribou Mountain, 3,333-foot Merrill Mountain, and a dozen other peaks over 2,700 feet in elevation. It is important headwater habitat for the Kennebec River as well as headwater streams that feed into the nearby Moose River, providing great habitat for wild brook trout.

The preserve is managed as an ecological reserve, where the forest is shaped by natural processes such as wind, ice, and other weather events. Beyond providing valuable wildlife habitat, ecological reserves are important to scientists studying the growth of forests and how they respond, in the absence of timber harvesting, to challenges such as climate change, forest pests, diseases, and airborne pollution. Maintaining the carbon stored in this mature forest and providing opportunity for trees to continue pulling carbon from the atmosphere also benefits the climate.

This preserve is very remote and difficult to reach. Safe travel to and within the preserve requires high vehicle clearance, good tires, including spares, and the ability to repair your vehicle without help. There is no cell phone coverage and no facilities.