Visiting Roque Bluffs State Park

Hello Everyone!

Welcome to Life in Washington County…Has anyone been to Roque Bluffs? Lots of things to do you can launch your boat,  fish off the dock, enjoy the views, visit the park, have a cookout, hang out on the beach and enjoy a sunny day. I went to MotherShuckers Clam Shack and picked up a big pot full of Lobsters. Thanks Nadine!! Then took a ride around our gorgeous county, nice sunny day, windows down, smelling the salt air!! It couldn’t get any better.

Now I have to admit I have always called it “Roques Bluff” but I was wrong!!

I took a wonderful ride down to the Roque Bluffs State Park I haven’t been here in many years and what a beautiful place it is.  There were a few families on the beach enjoying the day, I seen a couple kayakers out enjoying the calm day. I learned that the beach at Roque Bluffs is #29 on the Ice Age Trail   (to learn more, visit http://iceagetrail.umaine.edu/).

A little history from the parks page about this little crescent shaped beach : History: “The sand/pebble beach at Roque Bluffs State Park is an unusual geologic feature along the Downeast coast, much of which is marked by bold cliffs and cobble shores. It resulted from an accumulation of sediment that eroded from a prominent glacial moraine lying to the east. There is a bedrock outcrop at the eastern end of the beach where visitors can see glacial striations (deep groves in the bedrock left by the glacier’s movement toward the southeast). This unusual beach has long been popular with area residents and visitors. The Maine State Park Commission used proceeds from a public bond to acquire and protect the land in 1969. Offshore, visitors can see Libby Lighthouse (formerly known as Machias Lighthouse because it marks the entrance to Machias Bay). This historic structure, built in 1817, is still an active beacon.”

For hiking there are 5 trails, I admit I didn’t hike —-nope, not a one!!  I did enjoy the beach, the peaceful quiet, and a little walk while I sipped my coffee.  But for those of you who want to come visit the park and explore the hiking trails :

The trailhead parking lot is a quarter-mile east of the beach parking lots (up the hill toward Roque Bluffs village). Five hiking trails (with the longest loop approximately 4 miles) allow visitors to meander through fields and woodlands bordering Pond Cove and Great Cove.

Visit the Roque Bluffs State Park trail map at Maine Trail Finder.

Pond Cove Trail (2 miles, approximately 1 hour) leads through meadows and woods (over largely flat terrain) and offers scenic vistas over Pond Cove.

Houghton’s Hill Trail (1.5 mile, approximately 45 minutes) provides a woods walk back to the trailhead from the western end of the Pond Cove Trail, passing over Houghton’s Hill (with moderate terrain suitable for fit walkers). A picnic table located halfway along the trail offers a place to rest or snack.

Blueberry Camp Trail (1 mile, approximately 30 minutes) cuts back from the coast to join Houghton’s Hill Trail, ascending that hill on the way back to the trailhead.

Mihill Trail (2 miles, approximately 1 hour) is the longest loop back from the end of the Pond Cove Trail, passing along the shore of Great Cove before turning inland. At the fork (Larry’s Loop), take the left trail for the most direct route back to the trailhead.

After I left Roque Bluffs, I took ride to Machiasport, a little off the beaten path. But after seeing the sandy beach at Roque Bluffs I wanted to see Jasper Beach and the complete opposite, a beach full of black rocks.

Dont forget to stop at the Bucks Harbor Shopping Mall and get a few snacks to enjoy at the beach!

Jasper Beach is amazing the first time you see it… you have to wonder if you are still in Maine. I love the sounds of the rocks as the waves crash into shore, even on a calm day the sound is soothing.  There are many different colors and shapes of rocks on this beach but unfortunately it appears other people have discovered this little slice of heaven with its incredibly smooth rocks, I am seeing a lot of pockets and holes. Jasper Beach is a gravel beach forming a crescent almost half a mile around Howard’s Cove. The slope of this beach down to the ocean is an experience like no other in the area. The beach is a also a habitat for seabirds and other wildlife.

On your way out of Jasper Beach be sure and stop at Fort O’Brien – The fort was built in 1775 and destroyed by the British in the same year. It was held by the British in 1814. When re-built in 1863, it was named Fort O’Brien. This state historic site is one of few Maine forts active during three wars – the American Revolution, War of 1812 and Civil War. Purchased by the State of Maine in 1923, the Fort overlooks the site of the Battle of the Margaretta and is open to the public as a state park during the summer months.