Orono is a town located along the scenic Stillwater and Penobscot Rivers, in Penobscot County. This town is known for its many natural areas and trails, and is home to the University of Maine, which has its own recreational trails that the public are free to enjoy. The many trails in town combined with the five veterinary clinics make Orono a fun and safe place to stay with your dog!
One of the main attractions in this town is the Orono Bog Boardwalk. This one-mile loop trail passes through four different types of peatland bog environment. Along this boardwalk is a massive variety of colorful flora and fauna that you can watch and photograph. There are benches along the way for some rest and relaxation in nature. Leashed dogs are welcome too, of course, as long as they get picked up after!
If you’re looking for a dog friendly place to crash after all your adventures, you don’t need to go far! Head over to the University Inn Academic Suites, in the north end of Orono. They welcome two dogs of any size for a extra small fee. Be sure to call ahead to make sure you get a pet friendly room!
With all of these dog friendly places in town, it’s clear Orono loves dogs, and dogs love Orono!
The bustling town center of Orono is home to some great urban parks to check out with your canine companion! Brownie’s Park is a riverside green area where you can find some solace from the city. The park itself is wooded and fairly undeveloped, but provides access to the woofderful Stillwater Trail. This dirt pathway is about 4 miles roundtrip, and popular among bikers, joggers and dog walkers. It follows the Stillwater River, so you can enjoy the sights and sounds of the water on your walk with Fido. Leashed dogs are welcome, just don’t forget the waste bags! When you’ve worked up an appetite, head over to The Family Dog. As the name implies, this restaurant has dog friendly tables on the deck, and serves up hot dogs, burgers and shakes.
In the University of Maine neighborhood, just a hop across the Stillwater River from downtown, you can find the Piney Knoll Conservation Area. This 57 acre parcel of lush wilderness is a great place to go when you and your pup are itching to get outside, but don’t want to go very far. The vast riverside woodland attracts outdoor enthusiasts for it’s hiking, cross-country skiing and bird-watching. You can access trails from Colburn Drive, Marsh Lane and Orchard Trails. Leashed dogs are welcome to explore with their humans, just don’t forget the waste bags and dog treats for your good boy or girl!
In the Forest Avenue neighborhood of Orono, you can find a piece of the great outdoors right nearby! The Jeremiah Colburn Natural Area and some of its trail are accessible from Forest Hills Terrace and Cota Trail. Along 1.8 miles of trails in this natural area, you’ll be able to enjoy the sights and sounds of streams, wildflowers and birds. Watch out for the “Big Old Tree”, an enormous white pine, and the “Pineapple Tree”, a pine tree and an apple tree growing intertwined together. Dogs are welcome to join in on the fun in this network of trails, as long as they stay under control and leave only paw prints!
Another puppy paradise place to check out in this town is Gould’s Landing. This scenic nature preserve is located in the Gould Landing neighborhood, along the lovely Pushaw Lake. In this park you can find a boat launch, beach area, and picnic areas to kick back at relax. This park is perfect for a gathering with family or friends, including the dog! From here that you can access some great walking trails that wind through broadleaf forests and along the shoreline. There are benches and lookout points along the trail for some peaceful meditation in nature. Fido is welcome in the park and along the trails, as long you follow Leave No Trace principles.
Just a short trot across the border south into Bangor brings you to a great place for some fresh air and exercise, the Bangor City Forest. This 680 acre forest can be accessed from Tripp Drive in the Stillwater Avenue neighborhood. Here you can find approximately 9 miles trails and boardwalks for running, hiking, biking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Dogs are welcome, but must stay leashed on Main Road, Shannon Road, Tripp Drive and East Trail, and otherwise under voice control at all times. Be sure to pick up after your pup! This forest is pretty popular for dog walkers, so get ready to make some furry friends.