Published August 15th, 2011
Located a short drive from French’s Point along scenic Route 1, Camden Hills State Park is where coastal boutique shopping meets top-notch outdoor recreation.
The park lies just a few minutes north of Camden’s charming downtown, overlooking Penobscot Bay. Its crown jewel is the panoramic view from atop Mt. Battie, a vista that includes the bay and its islands, as well as the peak of Acadia National Park’s Cadillac Mountain on a clear day. The sights from the summit are said to have inspired Edna St. Vincent Millay, a famous native poet, to pen “Renascence,” a poem that opens, “All I could see from where I stood was three long mountains and a wood. I turned and looked another way and saw three islands in a bay.”
For a leisurely trip, take the auto road and drive to the summit. For a more heart-pumping ascent, hit the half-mile trail for a hike over granite rocks and through wild blueberry bushes. Keep an eye out for foxes, deer and songbirds. If you’re visiting in the fall, take in the added treat of watching the leaves shift from green to vibrant reds, oranges and yellows.
Camden Hills State Park boasts 30 miles of hiking trails in all, including treks to its highest peak, Megunticook Mountain, which rises 1,380 feet. Stay overnight at the campground for a summer night under the stars.