Hal and Deb Blood started Cedar Ridge Outfitters from the ground up, literally. It was a dream for them since the beginnings of their marriage in 1978. After 4 years in the Marine Corps, Hal bought a boat and went Lobstering for 10 years. Then they decided to make their dream a reality & move to the mountains.
In 1989 they bought 25 acres of wilderness, just outside the center of the town of Jackman. Hal & Deb along with their 8 year old son Gary, cleared the land and built the first duplex cabin that year ( with help from friends). They moved up from the coast of Maine in 1991 built 2 more cabins and opened for business. In 1992/93 they built their 3500 square foot custom log home completely from scratch. See photos on this page.
In 1995 they built a large 2 cabin complex, to give them the 6 cabins they had intended on their list of goals. Over the years there was a big response for a "honeymoon" cabin. People wanted a "cabin" like our home. So, in 2008, Hal and Deb built a "luxury custom made log cabin" for our guests. It's a lot smaller than our 3,500 sq ft home, but it's gorgeous. Click here for photos of the cabins.
When they bought the land they had always had it in their minds to make Cedar Ridge a year round hunting, fishing, recreational & vacation sporting resort. In the many years since they began this adventure, Cedar Ridge and Hal and Deb have well exceeded their original expectations for the business. Voted in 2006 by Forbes magazine as one of the top 10 outfitters in the United States. With a tremendous amount of hard work, persistence and tenacity they have made Cedar Ridge into the thriving four season business that it is today.
On top of their achievements for Cedar Ridge, Hal is an admired and highly recognized Registered Maine Master guide, and an accomplished Author that has become a well known figure in the world of hunting, particularly whitetail deer. See more about Hal at www.bigwoodsbucks.com.
Deb, Hals wife of 32 years, who is a registered Maine hunting guide herself and has taken a few whitetail bucks herself. An accomplished self taught Chef, Deb's cooking skills rival that of the famous sporting camps of yesteryears. Click here to read about Deb, her cookbook and menu.
Their Son Gary is Married to his high school sweetheart Jessica. Gary is a Staff Sargent in the US Army. They have a 4 yr old daughter Kylie and a new son Rylan, born in September.
Winter Snowmobile season
Good snow Often starts the first of December and goes right through into April. Some years the season is shorter due to snow falls. But is still one of the areas busiest seasons. And Jackman is well known for one of the best snowmobiling in the state. Cedar Ridge offers lodging this time of year. For more information on snowmobiling click here.
Hunting opportunities for snowshoe hare are also available during the winter. The winter weather in the northern mountains of Maine can be down right brutal to reasonably mild. In December & January, we have seen a brutal 45 below zero (that’s NOT wind-chill folks!) to a quite hot 70 degrees in March. In December 2007 alone, Jackman got 60 inches of snow. In April 2007 Jackman got over 5 feet of snow in a 2 week period. These are the extremes, so for the average winter weather it is somewhere in between.
Spring "Mud Season"
This season starts when the snow starts melting usually between first of April and mid April. The snow is generally gone by the first of May. Our "Ice Out" is typically around May 6th. I have seen Ice out as early as April 20th and as late as May 15th. So there is not much to do here in this season. Hal does teach a 4 day guide school end of April and two, 3 day weekend Deer clinics first of May during this "mud season".
A lot of people ask about “Bug Season”. Unless you are going to a Caribbean Island you’re going to run into irritating bugs. The Maine Black fly only hatches in the spring and only lasts for about 3 or 4 weeks. They hatch in "running" water (brooks & streams) and are at their worst near running water. So for people fishing they can be a nuisance, but only during the hatch which starts around the 3rd week in May. July is the worst month for Mosquitoes, but only for those that are near "still or stagnant" water. Our lodge is not on any body of water running or still and that is a plus for those of us that hate the pesky little buggers.
Summer Vacationing, Fishing, ATVing etc.
Fishing in Maine opens April 1st. ATV trails open around the 15th of May, all depends on how fast the snow melts. You can't Ice fish then and we have ice on the ponds and lakes much later in this area then in southern Maine. Memorial weekend is generally the kick off for the areas fishing season, which ends September 30th. Whitewater rafting is popular here in this area due to 2 big rivers that are controlled with Dams. Rafting opens May 1st for the bravest of the bravest, and ends first weekend in October.
ATVing is big here in Northern Maine. Jackman has hundreds of miles of trails all linking up with other ATV trails in the state. Trails generally open May 15th and close late into the fall. Weather during this season is very nice. Since we are at 1400 feet above sea level, our weather can range anywhere from cold (50) to quite hot (90) during the summer. The average highs are 75, average lows are 60. Even though we do have rainy days, this area is known for nice days with a few puffy clouds.See our weather now at www.wunderground.com
For more information on summer vacations and activities click here.
Fall Foliage Season
If you have never seen Maine in full foliage color change then you haven't seen the most beautiful thing that nature can dish out. Maine’s foliage season is at different times all over the state, but for this area our best color falls between September 18th and October 8th. The weather at this time is generally very nice. Often cloudy, sometimes rainy (foliage is best in low light & cloudy days, color will be more pronounced). Temps range from 50 to 60 during the day, on average.
Fall Hunting Season
We offer big and small game hunting here at Cedar ridge. Fall is when most of the hunts are available. For hunting information please go to the home page and to the link about the hunt you are particularly interested in.
The weather here in fall ranges tremendously from nice summer weather in September, with average day time temps from 65 to 70, to October where it can be a wide mix of weather. I've seen it snow 2 feet of snow first week of October (that snow will melt) but I have also seen it 75 degrees in October. October weather is usually a mish mash. November is almost always cloudy, rainy, and snowy with temps that average between 20 and 30.
For more information for the area go to www.jackmanmaine.org