Maine’s Baxter State Park recently got a new neighbor on its border: the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. But while the new monument hopes to attract visitors, Baxter tries to limit public access, and Baxter officials worry those differing goals could cause problems in the future.
According to the Bangor Daily News, the director of Baxter State Park hasn’t waited for a series of public meetings due to start Thursday to publicly voice his concerns about the new monument property and the two parks’ differing management philosophies.
In order to preserve its wilderness as much as possible, Baxter strives to limit access to about 75,000 visitors annually. The National Park Service’s goals, however, include “continuing expanded use,” says Baxter Park’s Jensen Bissell.
Bissell recently released a three-page open letter outlining his apprehension that Katahdin Woods visitors will cross the shared boundary with the park and imperil areas left largely untouched since Theodore Roosevelt visited them in 1879.