Sunday, December 17, 2017
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2017 is CVOA 's 17th Anniversary!
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About CVOA

The Carrabassett Valley Outdoor Association (CVOA) is a vibrant and growing club with diverse interests springing from a single core: our love of the outdoor For the past 15 years, our mission has been simple and straight-forward: To preserve and protect our natural resources and promote the recreational opportunities in our area. Our members … now more than 800 strong … are out there skiing, snowshoeing, hiking, biking, canoeing, camping, fishing and hunting in every corner of Maine. We’ve been branded the “active outdoor club” and we prove it every year.

Our annual “Adventure Calendar” is jam-packed every year, featuring dozens of outings. This year’s highlights included a ski trip to Big Sky, Montana; a bike trip in Quebec City, Canada; and a weekend hiking in the 100-Mile Wilderness. There were waterfall tours, fishing trips, socials, dances, pot luck dinners, canoe trips, full moon kayak and snowshoe treks. We wear ourselves out. Next year promises to be equally exciting.

We already have plans in the works for a ski trip to Whistler, a biking trip in Montreal, a kayaking/hiking trip with Maine Huts & Trails, a full moon ski on the golf course, a bowling and pizza night and a cross country ski trek in the 100-Mile Wilderness.

Our commitment to the unspoiled beauty of our own neighborhood is unflagging. CVOA assists in road and trail cleanups; trail building and maintenance; and community projects that need some helping hands. This year, we rebuilt or repaired the original picnic tables we sited along the popular Narrow Gauge Pathway a decade ago, and we hauled a brand new table up to the scenic Crommett Overlook.

We built and maintain a top-notch shooting range in a first-rate setting. We conduct an annual Hunter Safety Course and trap shooting lessons. This year we added a brand new storage building with a flush toilet at our range.

We stock a trout pond for catch and release fishing and provide fly-casting lessons. Our members learn to explore safely with our courses on using GPS and a compass. We sponsor a local Boy Scout troop. We’ve published a cookbook and a local hiking guide that has sold over 700 copies.

When we can, we donate money to local groups that need our help. This year, for example, we donated money to the Stratton Summer Recreation Program so local kids could attend summer camp, and we donated money to the NEMBA biking group to build trails.

What does all that fun cost? Not much!

Because we operate without paid staff, CVOA has managed to keep our annual dues at $10 for individuals and $15 for families. Membership to the range is just an additional $20 per range member.

So, what are you waiting for? JOIN THE ADDVENTURE.

Join online or Download an application here:

Join us /Renew

Our Past (We've been around for 15 years now.)

Our Past (We've been around for 15 years now.)

We’re the little outdoor club that grew and grew from a dozen outdoor enthusiasts 12 years ago to more than 700 members today. We started out as a litter patrol. This small group got together to discuss their concerns about numerous postings of private lands in Carrabassett Valley (including the Penobscot Indian Nation, with 20,000 acres, one-third of all the land in the valley).

Irresponsible sportsmen including bikers, hunters, hikers, ATV riders and snowmobilers were littering the trails and mistreating these lands. This group of respected outdoor enthusiasts created a plan. They started cleaning up the popular trails in Carrabassett Valley that snake through these private lands. They called themselves the Carrabassett Valley Outdoor Association. That first year, this small group hauled truckloads of trash off the trails including the Narrow Gauge Pathway, The Carriage Road and others. They also worked with a group of town volunteers, led by Randy Clukey, to pick up trash along every stretch of Route 27 that runs through Carrabassett Valley. Their efforts paid off, the postings came down.

Each year the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife honors landowners across the state for their generosity and their contributions in providing public access for outdoor recreation. Last year CVOA nominated the Penobscot Indian Nation for the landowner award given annually by State Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife. The Penobscot Indian Nation was recognized and won the Public Land Owner of the Year Award for 2012. “These landowners are a vital part of our outdoor community, providing outdoor recreational opportunities for a variety of people”. Representatives of the Penobscot Indian Nation and CVOA members celebrated with dinner together at the award ceremony.

Community and Environmental Involvement

Community and Environmental Involvement

CVOA still conducts annual clean-up patrols of virtually all heavily used trails on private property in our area. As a group, we take part in annual cleanups along the public roads and trails in the region. We constantly pick up litter on the trails we hike and bike.

CVOA provides major manpower for spring trail clearing and brush cutting on the Appalachian Trail section. CVOA “adopted” and several members maintain the Sugarloaf section, Crocker trail, the Rangeley Lake section and the campground at the Crocker Cirque. We correct or report instances of damage to the area’s recreational infrastructure. CVOA’s trail maintainers spend countless hours on the A.T. and in the Bigelow Preserve. 
 We have created a partnership with the Town of Carrabassett Valley on the Narrow Gauge Pathway. This is an important biking, hiking and skiing trail along the 5.3-mile historic railroad bed that borders the step falls along the beautiful Carrabassett River. CVOA assists in the maintenance of this trail and has cut brush, built and installed picnic tables alongside swimming holes and other picturesque locations. We’ve also cut a new half-mile trail along the river at the start of the pathway. We helped build a canoe trail and repair storm damage to our waterways. We helped buy a stove for a community center where we hold our socials.

Creating and enhancing recreational activities is a major role of our organization. For instance, several of our members have been working with the Stratton/Eustis Chamber of Commerce, U.S. Park Service and Northern Forest Canoe Trail (NFCT) organization to develop the Flagstaff Section of a 500-mile canoe trail. Today CVOA is more than just a handful of locals picking up litter.

We are more than an environmental club; we love to have fun.

We are more than an environmental club; we love to have fun.

We take outdoor trips locally and all over the country. So many friendships are formed with a full event calendar. Our annual list of activities features over 30 major events, including an annual weekend outing to our state treasures: Baxter State Park and Acadia National Park. We’ve hiked, skied, fished camped and biked in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, Quebec, Isle au Haut, Monhegan Island, Gulf Hagas and the Maine coast. This year, we’ll add trips to the Stonington, Camden, with winter trips to Quebec City and Baxter State Park. Join online or Download an application here:

Join us /Renew

We do so much!

We do so much!

CVOA Winter Social

Full moon ski & stew
Ski/snowshoe Lac Megantic Provincial Park
Local waterfall tours
4-day trek; NH Presidential Range
Peaks Island biking trek and BBQ
Weekend getaway to Lubec
Baxter camping trip
Mid coast paddle on Biscayne Pond & cookout
Hike up Little Bigelow
Getaway to Nahamakanta
Bike ride from Solon to Bingham
Annual fall getaway to Bar Harbor

Ski with CVOA Sundays
Saddleback ski trips
Discounted Sugarloaf ski tickets X-mas week
Winter snowshoe/ski trek into Baxter State Park
Quebec City Trip, skiing Mount Saint Anne
Biking tour of the coastal lighthouses
Day hike to Tumbledown
Coastal get-away to Stonington
Dead River kayak/canoe trip
Scarborough Marsh full moon kayak trip
Shakedown Cruise on the Victory Chimes
100-Mile Wilderness
Lubec, Campobello, East Port & Deer Isle

We’ve canoed and kayaked the Kennebec and the Allagash rivers. This year, we’ll tackle the Saco River and others. Every year we take a fishing trip in Quebec. We have had ski trips to Jackson Hole, Aspen. Sun Valley, Whistler, Fernie, Le Massif, Big Sky and Tuckermans. This year, we’re heading to Vail.

Our Membership

Our Membership

Our membership has grown from a handful of locals to 700 members scattered across New England and Canada. We have a number of retirees many of whom have made their retirement homes in Carrabassett Valley. Many seasonal residents of the area participate; many are wintertime skiers and those who look forward to summertime hiking and other outdoor activities. 
Every year, we do more with young and old who remain dedicated to stewarding the land and enjoying the great Maine outdoors.

We built and maintain a top-notch shooting range in a first-rate setting. The 30-plus acre range sits off Rte. 27, just 1.7 miles north of the Sugarloaf Access Road. Its backdrop is the majestic Bigelow Mountain Range. This year our weekly trap-shooting program had a record numbers of shooters. The range’s programs and activities were far and away the most successful of any year in its 15 years of operations. In a ceremony at the Sugarloaf Outdoor Center last summer, Scouts Matthew Beauregard and Ian Wilson received their Eagle Badges. Both young men had conducted extensive projects required for the Eagle Badge at the CVOA range.

Our range was built on the backs of volunteers. It was developed for safe and organized recreational shooting – something that has not previously existed in our region. The CVOA Range includes an archery, rifle and pistol range. Its newest addition is a state- of-the-art trap-shooting machine we use each week to shoot clays and we offer trap- shooting lessons. We conduct an annual Hunter Safety Course for young and old alike and sponsor a local Boy Scout troop. Junior programs highlight many activities featuring safety and hands-on shooting. Kids learn to use Cricket .22 rifles. CVOA has had authentic black powder muzzle-loading demonstrations and trick clay-shooting events on many occasions. Many times the Maine Inland Fisheries & Game assists CVOA with volunteers to help out at that range. Range Officers volunteer to assist range participants and train on range safety.

We are so much more than a gun club.

We are so much more than a gun club.

Every day, a member sets out on a hike, a bike or a pair of skis. We have a number of experienced sectional A.T. hikers, many who have completed the trail in Maine and some who are piecing out the entire trail over time. These hikers have and published a CVOA Hiking Guide with two dozen of some of the more popular climbs in the area. The 1st edition of the CVOA Hiking Guide was a sellout. A new hiking guide is currently in the works and expanded to include other recreational opportunities in our area.

We have published a cookbook of 400 recipes. These are favorites from the talented chefs who turn even a wilderness outing into a gourmet feast. We’ve published an annual calendar with photos of CVOA outings. We’ve offered lessons in fly-casting and courses on GPS, map and compass readings. We’re looking to expand into photography classes and some canoeing and wilderness survival courses. We sponsor socials, dances and potluck dinners. We participate at Sugarloaf’s Homecoming with a booth and our Barbecue at the shooting range. We’re always looking for new ideas, new places to visit, and new things to do.

How do we do it? Volunteers!

How do we do it? Volunteers!

From our four club officers, to our board members, web managers, activity coordinators, trip leaders, writers, photographers and our crack shooting range crew, all our work is done by volunteers. So how about getting involved yourself? Join us for the CVOA adventure! Join us! Download an application here:

Join us /Renew

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