Monday, April 29, 2013

Pleasant Mountain Lives Up To Its Name

Try this moderate mountain hike only one hour north of Portland, Maine.

Jenny enjoys the summit views at Pleasant Mountain
On a late April weekend, I wanted to get a little exercise and enjoy the sunshine.  Usually, the only option for a moderately challenging hike is to drive two hours north to the White Mountains, but on this weekend, Jenny suggested we try Pleasant Mountain - the tallest mountain in Southern Maine at 2,006 feet.  Friends- Jenny and Holly - joined me for this sunny adventure to a new peak.

Although the trees were not yet green, it was still a beautiful day with gorgeous weather and views of the lake region below.  This is an ideal hike for someone looking for a half day away from the city or a family looking for a moderate trek up the mountain.

Trail Head sign at the Ledges Trail

Here is how to recreate our adventure....

Adventure:  Pleasant Mountain/Shawnee Peak hike in Bridgton, ME.

Getting there: Take Route 302 west out of Portland.  Follow it about 6 miles out of Bridgton and turn left on Mountain Road.  Pass the Shawnee Peak Ski Area.  The Ledges Trail is on the right (parking on left) about 2 miles past the ski area.  There is no fee to park there.

Trail:  We hiked the "Ledges Trail" up and back.  But there are multiple ascents.  Ledges provide a few good views on the way up.
Trail head map of Pleasant Mountain

Difficulty:  Moderately Difficult Trail.  This should be fine for anyone in moderate shape.  If you struggle with join pain, use treking poles as it does have a rocky incline/descent.  This should be a good family hike for grade-school age children and up as long as you take your time.  

Distance:  1.8 miles one way on the Ledges Trail.  3.6 round trip.

Recommendations:   Wear appropriate footwear (sturdy sneakers or hiking boots), carry a daypack with at least 1 L of water, a snack, and rain gear.  The summit is exposed and can be windy.
There are no bathrooms at the trail head or summit. 

It was nice to get out of the city for a little adventure and hike.  Pleasant Mountain provided a moderate hike with great views only one hour from Portland, Maine.  I can't wait to go again!

Impressive fire tower at summit of Pleasant Mountain

Please contact me or leave a comment if you have questions, comments, or concerns.