LINCONVILLE — Climb 1,100-foot Bald Rock Mountain in Camden Hills State Park to enjoy outstanding views across Penobscot Bay.
From the Routes 1-173 intersection in Lincolnville Beach, turn west on Route 173 and drive 2.25 miles to the Youngtown Road intersection. Bear left onto this road and then turn left immediately into a gravel parking lot marked by Camden Hills State Park signage.
Hike along the tote road (known as the Ski Lodge Road) past the Frohock Mountain Trail intersection to where the road crests about 1¼miles from the parking lot. The Cameron Mountain Trail bears right; marked by blue blazes, the 0.5-mile Bald Rock Mountain Trail bears left past a stone foundation. A sign identifies the Bald Rock Mountain turnoff.
Winding through a mixed forest and offering glimpses of Mount Megunticook, the Bald Rock Mountain Trail steepens near the summit before emerging onto the granite ledges that give Bald Rock Mountain its name.
The views reward hikers. While relaxing on the ledges one fine summer morning, I heard folks approaching; at least two women, I figured, and I understood her thrill when one woman exclaimed, “Oh, my goodness!” as she transitioned onto the ledges from the woods.
Bald Rock Mountain views extend 180 degrees, north through east to south, and encompass all Penobscot Bay and the distant Hancock and Waldo County peaks. The slightest sunlit haze obscured distant Monhegan Island this morning, but Isle au Haut and Mount Desert Island loomed above the eastern horizon. I pointed out Searsport, Islesboro, Castine, North Haven, Vinalhaven (the three wind towers identify this island), Rockport Harbor, Rockland and its breakwater lighthouse, and Owls Head to a hiking companion.
He, too, had never ascended Bald Rock Mountain, and he certainly appreciated the views.
From the summit, hikers can descend the Bald Rock Mountain Trail or take a longer trail that crosses Derry Mountain and Frohock Mountain. Both trails reach the tote road and the parking lot.
Via the Bald Rock Mountain Trail, the roundtrip is 3.5 miles.