Recently I got a happy earful when I asked a few locals to suggest day trips that would be suitable for my grandchildren when they come for Camp Savta in August. The grandkids have plenty of favorite activities and sites that are “must do’s” when they visit but I would like to shake up their routine just a bit. So today I decided to check out one of my Maine friends’ suggestions: Frenchman’s Hole in Newry, Maine.
Located off a dirt road seemingly in the middle of nowhere (like every other rural Maine attraction worth seeing), Frenchman’s Hole is part of the Mahoosuc Land Trust and is near Sunday River, one of Maine’s famous ski resorts outside of Bethel, Maine. Deep inside the woods, past an old covered bridge and some logging bridges and roads, is a series of cascades, wading and swimming pools culminating in two cliffs overlooking a waterfall. It is from both of these cliffs, 20′ and 30′ respectively, that people jump into the cold waters below – – especially refreshing on a hot summer day. At the bottom of the cliff at water’s edge is a long rope which allows swimmers to climb from the water back to the top.
While I was there a summer camp was visiting the site, and the teens were having a blast. One especially daring fellow did a double flip dive off the taller of the two cliffs. My grandchildren are going to love this! (Their parents, not so much.)
Two miles downstream is swimming hole known as The S, a name given due to the bend in the road at that point. This large natural swimming pool is ideal for children of all ages. Our dog Truman found a doggie playmate there and they had a blast running in and out of the water.
Truthfully, you could live in the White Mountains your entire life and never see it all. But even repeat visits to old favorites bring something new; and each time I bring friends and family to these place I relive the joy of discovery time and time again.