Lands for Maine's Future Goes Digital

By Lura Jackson

The beauty and ruggedness of Maine – sculpted by the retreating Laurentide Ice Sheet just over 10,000 years ago – is a singular benefit granted to all who reside and live in the state. To conserve its natural condition and preserve it for future generations, Lands for Maine’s Future [LMF] was voted into place by wide support in 1987. Today, 32 years later, LMF has developed hundreds of projects around the state, including many in Washington County – and it has created its first digital database of those projects through which the public may browse.

The online database for LMF was launched at the end of January by the Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry, and it provides an easy way to search for recreational activities. The map can be located at www.maine.gov/dacf/lmf/projects.shtml.

The initial map provides a statewide view of the current projects that LMF has uploaded – though it hasn’t finished uploading its more than 300 projects yet. Users of the interactive map can type in a town name or their zip code to zoom to their location and then browse the nearby sites.

Searching for Calais, one of the nearest projects to appear is Pocomoonshine Lake. The listing for the lake reads: “Pocomoonshine Lake is considered one of Maine’s finest fisheries for both smallmouth and large bass, as well as white perch.” It details the activities available on the lake – “Canoeing, Fishing, Kayaking, Swimming, Trailer boat access” – and provides the location for public landings.

In nearby Cooper and Dennysville, the Dennys River is highlighted. “The Dennys is a river rich in superlatives. Among all the Downeast salmon rivers that are rated as “outstanding” for their water quality and wildlife values, the Dennys has the richest wildlife, the most diverse riverine and riparian plant communities, and the longest stretch of river without road crossings or camps,” the listing reads.

 

While the LMF interactive map is far from complete – Calais residents may note that Devil’s Head isn’t represented yet, for instance – it is the beginning of an excellent resource for residents and visitors alike. At the bottom of the page are links to four comprehensive separate lists of LMF’s projects, giving an idea of the detailed outdoor recreational activity digital map that’s on the horizon.