What do a quintessential Maine hike with near-peak-foliage views, a quiet yet bustling coastal town and an amazing wine-tasting experience all have in common? They are all a quick drive up Rt. 1 in Camden. This streets of this picturesque coastal town are simply a stone’s throw away from all that Maine has to offer, and today that’s an amazing hike. Today’s plan is a packed one. My advice: Get an early start on the day and try to hit everything.
Mount Megunticook is our first stop – a serene hike that rewards you with views of Camden Harbor, a set of sprawling islands and a 360-degree view of the fall canopy below. To get here, follow these simple directions. Cruise up the coast up to Camden Hills State Park ($3 entry fee). Choose the Megunticook Trail that stretches up one mile to the summit. The hike is beautiful, particularly this time of year and the incline is fairly gradual. Plan on an ascent time of about an hour for someone in fairly decent shape. Today’s views are hindered completely by a blanket of fog, but your view will be better.
Arriving back at the trail head, you’ll want to next drive up the park’s auto road to the scenic overlook on Mount Battie. Here you’ll find even more exquisite views that you’ll wish you’d brought a camera to capture. A stone tower marks the hillside. Step inside and climb the steps to rise even further above the treeline to take in one-of-a-kind views. The oranges and reds below are brilliant and the trees here are holding onto their leaves a bit longer.
With plenty of restaurants to choose from back in town, you’ll have no trouble finding a cold beverage and warm fare to regain the feeling in your calves from that descent down Megunticook. The eatery choice of the day is Cappy’s – home of what I call the best Reuben in Maine.
It’s wine time. You’re now headed to Maine’s own Cellardoor Winery. It’s 9 minutes down the road in Lincolnville and you’ll follow these directions. This was my first visit and I can say without a doubt – I’ll be back. This magnificent and renovated old farm was converted to a winery and has sprawling views that you’ll wish you could enjoy every evening. Head to the tasting room and try 4 samples for FREE or 8 samples for only $6. If you love white wine – try the Perfect Stranger. If you enjoy a lighter-bodied red wine – try the Red Said Ned.