A small island in the Kennebec River is a camping destination with abundant wildlife and a historic past. Swan Island is home to the Steve Powell Wildlife Management Area operated by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
The four-mile long island is accessed by ferry from downtown Richmond and includes six buildings dating to the 1700s from the abandoned settlement of Perkins Township. Bald eagles, white-tailed deer, wild turkeys and many songbirds inhabit the island.
Island activities include walking on nature trails, biking on gravel roads, nature photography, kayaking, fishing for bass and stripers in the Kennebec and simply relaxing. Canoeists and kayakers can access the island at two landings. Each year the island holds special events like guided bird walks, and a Kennebec frontier encampment re-creating life in the mid 1700s.
There is a fee for all visitors, and those arriving by ferry must have advance reservations as only 60 visitors are allowed each day. The island has 10 campsites each with and Adirondack shelter, a picnic table and fireplace. Campsites must be reserved in advance and stays are limited to two nights. For more information, fees and reservations, call (207) 547-5322.