Tumbledown Mountain is a lengendary mountain, for many reasons. It provides many different experiences, depending on your approach. Our friend Jon “Mountain Man” Moyer mentioned it would be a great one for my DD’s 35 for 35, so I immediately added it to my list.
Jess and I always have really good intentions, but it’s hard for me to get up in the am (I have a circadian rhythm sleep disorder – more on that later) so it’s kind of an act of nature to get me up and out of the house to hike a big mountain. Legit – someone has to sleep over and haul me into the car and then I sleep during the drive and then I always drive home. I am VERY thankful for my very kind + understanding friends who love me enough to drag me out of bed. For real. So thankful.
Tumbledown Mountain is located close to Blue Hill State Park, in Weld, Maine. It’s important the note that the street sign leading to the trailhead is crooked and it makes you think you’re going the wrong way, but you should go like you’re going into the park. There’s not much around, but the Schoolhouse Variety, pictured below is owned by some super nice people, and they have a bit of everything, so you should make this your last stop to fuel up!
We parked and did a 2 mile road walk to start at the Loop Trail.
We wanted to hit up the Fat Man’s Misery and add a few miles to our hike. We saw a few people heading back towards the parking lot, so it seems like we weren’t alone in our idea. Side note – this trail is definitely not recommended for dogs/kids, as there are some super difficult spots. But there are plenty of other trails you can take, like the popular Brook trail up to Tumbledown Pond.
It was quite a beautiful warm October day… thanks global warming. (take that as you wish.) We were way hotter than we expected, and the hike raised our body temps right off the bat. Tumbledown Mountain is named for it’s glacial erratics – see them below. Jess is there for scale. For more techinical information on Tumbledown Mountain – check out the State of Maine’s website.
We did see a lot of kids, and beginning hikers on the trail on this day. We are assuming they stopped on the granite ridge, before the ascent, because we definitely would NOT recommend ascent for those who don’t have experience, the trail is NOT well marked, and it especially challenging at parts. We also found some clothing – if you’re missing anything. We also found a random ladybug on the trail. Someone was thinking of us <3 .
The foliage was just perfect, late yellows and burnt siennas. Quite honestly it was too gorgeous to photograph We felt lucky to play in this wildness.
After making a lot of guesses on the poorly marked trail, we found our way to Fat Man’s Misery. And the legend held up – it was hilarious.
Once we got through the small opening, and we escaped the black fly that was chasing us around, it was pretty much smooth sailing. There are three peaks you can tackle – we went off to the left first, which was less populated to have lunch and enjoy our summit beer. Of Tumbledown’s three peaks, North Peak is the highest at 3,090 feet. East Peak and West Peak are only slightly lower.
Today’s summit beer was the recently canned Refueler, an American style wheat beer from Geaghan Bros. Brewing. Its light and refreshing and just so happens to be my favorite beer! If you’re in the Bangor/Brewer area, you should definitely check out the tasting room!
We hit up the second peak and continued along the ridge to check out more views before descending down to Tumbledown Pond.
Tumbledown Pond is situated at approximately 2,800 feet and is surrounded on three sides by higher elevations. It’s an alpine pond, and we encountered quite a few campers on this day – there was a meteor shower taking place that night, so it was a popular place.
It was a quick descent back down to the parking lot after the pond. We did see some inexperienced hikers up at the pond, so we’d say the trail up to the pond is moderate, and is a good picnic hike!
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