A group of friends and I paddled the first two sections of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail (NFCT) a few years back, and I’ve been itching to go back to complete the rest. I’ve also paddled section 12, the famous Allagash River, in Maine. The beauty of the NFCT is that I can keep picking these trips off section by section, or choose to paddle all thirteen sections at once to cover the entire 740 mile route like an AT thru-hiker. The trail starts in Old Forge, New York, and finishes in Fort Kent, Maine. The NFCT covers 23 rivers and streams, 59 lakes and ponds, and 65 portages (a little more than 70 miles) and is the longest inland water trail in the United States. This is as classic as canoe country paddling gets, with the trail following traditional Native American travel routes.