Distance: 1.3 miles to Bald Mountain summit
Time: 1-1.5 hours (one way)
Elevation: 2,443 feet
Difficulty: Family Hike
Bald is beautiful. No, I’m not talking about my weathered dome. Bald Mountain in Oquossoc, Maine, with an assist from its observation tower, provides panoramic views of Rangeley Lake, Mooselookmeguntic Lake, Saddleback Mountain and many other peaks of the Longfellow Mountains. You don’t have to take my word for it—the trailhead sign promises, and the hike delivers.
The trailhead sign promises “beautiful” views. You won’t be disappointed.
The other important takeaway is the “slippery when wet” message. We’ve rated Bald Mountain as a “Family Hike,” and it’s a lot of fun with kids, just know that the upper section features numerous granite rock scrambles. The kids will love these; however, to avoid giving hiking a bad name, leave the sandals in the car and make sure everyone has appropriate footwear.
The Bald Mountain Trail is a classic case of trail bait and switch. The easy beginning can fool hikers into thinking this 1.3-mile ascent will be no sweat.
Blue Blazes mark the Bald Mountain Trail. A favorite hike amongst locals and recreational tourists in the Rangeley Lakes Region, the trail is well travelled and easy to follow.
A short distance into the hike, we took a break to admire these flowers. Can anyone tell me what they are?
The trail begins to change its tune with gnarly roots ready to snag the toes of sandal-footed tourists. Then come the rocks.
The rocks are small and hoppable at first before growing into full-on scrambles.
One after another. Note how smooth the rocks are from all the foot traffic—thus the slippery when wet warning.
The rock scrambles are also what makes this hike so much fun for kids (adult kids too)—lets them channel their inner spider man.
The trail levels out near the top with a series of boardwalks.
One last rock scramble is in store, and then you’ll be summit bound.
The summit has plenty of open space to drop packs, along with a couple of picnic tables. A few side herd paths lead to ledges with partial views, but the best vistas are obtained by climbing the Bald Mountain observation tower.
The view of Mooselookmeguntic Lake from the observation tower. On this day we were able to see
Mordor Mt. Washington in the distance.
The 360-degree views also include Rangeley Lake. The Saddleback Mountain Range is directly behind the lake.
More views of the Longfellow Mountains. The Appalachian Trail is somewhere in there.
Directions to Bald Mountain
There are two connecting trailheads for Bald Mountain off of Bald Mountain Road. The first is located at the public boat launch. The shorter and more popular hike, reviewed here, is a little further up the road.
To get to the trailheads, follow Maine Route 4 west through Oquossoc Village. Just before Route 4 ends at Haines Landing on Mooselookmeguntic Lake, turn left onto Bald Mountain Road. The main trailhead parking lot is 0.8 miles on the left. Parking is free, and there’s an outhouse available.
Atop Bald Mountain, we were treated to Sheep Laurel in bloom.
Mooselookmeguntic Lake filtered.
And in monochrome.