Hey it’s DD! Today, I’ve decided to share with you a pretty awesome hike that can be done by just about anyone that can put one foot in front of the other. This peak rewards conquerors with some pretty epic views and it can be done in a relatively short period of time. My friend and fellow adventurer Jess, joined me on this perfect March day. We had just done a 4,000 footer the weekend before and we were looking for more of a chill hike where we could just have good times and great views – so we headed over to Bald Mountain in Rangeley!
Bald Mountain is about two to three hours from Bangor. We didn’t feel like getting up super early to hit the trail, so we left Bangor a bit before 8 a.m. and we hit the trailhead around 10:45a.m. Since there was a lot of snow on the ground and the parking area was not marked, we parked on the side of the road by the entry sign and just crossed our fingers that our car would be there when we got back. To reach the primary trailhead, follow ME-Route 4 to Bald Mountain Road until you reach the park sign for Bald Mountain. We did this hike in snowshoes, perfect for beginner winter hikers. If you’re a beginning hiker, this is a nice hike for you , but we’d recommend waiting until the summer or at least until the snow melts to see this summit’s amazing views. We needed our snowshoes the entire time for this hike. We hit the trail and it was magical right out of the gate. Fresh snow made it a challenge, but one we were definitely up for!
Winter hiking takes more out of you than summer hiking, and two and a half miles uphill in the snow feels more like five miles in the summer. We were some of the only people on the trail that day, so the snow provided us a good challenge because the trail was only moderately broken in, but it had snowed a few days prior. Imagine lifting your feet up with bricks glued to the bottom (alright, maybe that is a bit dramatic) but that’s what it feels like after a bit. Dressing for winter/spring hiking can be a challenge – you always think you need more than you do – and if you’re like me you over pack and weigh yourself down. I have learned the hard way what to bring and what not to bring – you can read more about that here!
The Bald Mountain Trail is located between Rangeley and Mooselookmeguntic Lakes. When you reach the summit, you’ll experience panoramic views including Saddleback Mountain, Elephant Mountain, the Height of Land, and New Hampshire’s Mount Washington in the White Mountains. On this day, fellow adventurer Willow, was actually hiking with another group in the White Mountains – she summited Mount Washington in the winter, which is a pretty amazing accomplishment, and we waved to her from the top.
We were blissful once we started to hit treeline and could see a sneak peak of the views to come!
The summit of Bald Mountain has a fire tower up top that you must climb up to check out the views! It’s amazing and is a nice place for a break on before you head back down.
We met some snowmobilers on the summit and we all enjoyed the sunshine and the blue skies at the top. That’s one of the things I love most about hiking + adventuring – the mentality. Everyone is so kind and helpful and eager to share information. There’s something magical about being in the mountains on a bright sunny day during the winter. It’s pretty close to paradise in my opinion. We celebrated our accomplishment with a beer at the top… and maybe some Fireball, too.
Jess and I enjoyed a break on the picnic tables, talking with some snowmobilers who had just arrived, and shooting some Fireball before beginning our descent.
Getting down the mountain is always way easier and takes less time, especially if a lot of it is done sliding down on your butt. Plus, the fireball made it a bit more fun + we were a bit fearless and giggly.
I realized the importance of having the wide snowflake attachments on your poles so that you don’t totally sink in – but I had to keep a watch because I kept losing one. This is why I have bright blue ones 🙂
The total hike was just about 2.3 miles and is perfect for a day hike from any of the surrounding areas. It was a nice challenge, with fantastic views, and doesn’t take all day long.
Have you done this hike? Tag us! #lovemaineadventures
cheers – dd