A woman from Pennsylvania and a man from Massachusetts were killed Friday in snowmobile crashes on trails in northern Maine.

A Massachusetts man died Friday  after crashing this sled on a trail south of Baxter State Park. Photo courtesy of Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

Their deaths bring the total of snowmobile fatalities this riding season to six, said Cpl. John MacDonald, spokesman for the Maine Warden Service.

A 41-year-old Pennsylvania woman was operating a 2014 Grand Touring Ski-Doo 900 on Bald Mountain Camps Trail near Rangeley around 11 a.m. Friday when the machine failed to negotiate a turn, MacDonald said.

The snowmobile rolled onto its side and struck trees along the trail. The operator died at the scene as a result of her injuries, MacDonald said.

The operator and a male passenger, also age 41 and from Pennsylvania, had been riding toward Rangeley, followed by three other snowmobiles in their party.

Wardens said speed didn’t appear to be a factor in the crash but operator inexperience may have been. The names of the operator and her passenger were being withheld until next of kin are notified. Rangeley Fire & Rescue assisted at the scene.


About an hour after the Rangeley crash, Alan Paquette, 55, of Ashburnham, Massachusetts, was killed when the snowmobile he was operating crashed in an area south of Baxter State Park, near Millinocket, MacDonald said.

Paquette was operating a 2019 Ski-Doo Renegade 850 on Trail 86 of the Interconnected Trail System, about 3.5 miles east of Abol Bridge. He was traveling last in a group of three snowmobiles when his machine missed a turn in the trail and crashed into several trees, MacDonald said.

Speed and unfamiliarity with the trail likely contributed to the crash, wardens said. Paquette’s body was taken to Lampson Funeral Home in Millinocket. Park rangers and local ambulance crew members assisted at the scene.

The warden service urges all snowmobilers to slow down and ride responsibly, allowing plenty of time to safely stop, negotiate changes in terrain and accommodate other riders. Wardens impose fines on riders found operating recklessly or endangering others.

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