This Hike In A New England State Leads To A Secret Emerald-Colored Water Swimming Hole

There are plenty of wonderful hikes out there. You can do a casual little one in a city like Griffith Park in Los Angeles or tackle the multiple-day Cascade Saddle hike in New Zealand, which has been fatal for some people. There are a million places to visit to experience the great outdoors, but the best ones have a secret destination many folks don't know about. What if we told you there's a lovely short hike in New England that takes you to a secret waterfall and swimming hole with clear, emerald water? This pretty place is on Blueberry Mountain in Evans Notch near Stow, Maine.

When we say that this is a "secret" swimming hole, it's for a few reasons. People know about it, but there are some directions you have to follow, and the hike sits on private land. The owners have generously opened the trail and swimming hole to the public, which will hopefully continue if hikers continue to be respectful of the property. Let's take a look at the Blueberry Mountain hike to Rattlesnake Flume and Rattlesnake Pool and what you need to know before you go. 

How to get to Rattlesnake Pool on Blueberry Mountain

To get to this delightful hike through the woods of Maine, you take Route 113 near the town of Gilead in the direction of Stone House Road. Make a left onto that road. Continue for several miles until it changes into Shell Pond Road. A few more miles and you'll see a gated area where you can park your car. Hike for half a mile until you see a grassy area, and through there, you'll find the trailhead. 

Keep going past the trailhead sign for about half a mile, then turn left at Stone House Trail. Again, half a mile in, you'll see a footbridge. If you like, you can go over the bridge to check out the gorge, which is worth a look. When you return to the bridge (or if you don't cross in the first place), keep going straight up a bit of a hill. You'll come to a sign with an arrow to the trail to the Rattlesnake Pool in another half mile. (The whole roundtrip is 2.5 miles.) Follow that arrow and you'll see Rattlesnake Flume which falls into Rattlesnake Pool. If you don't follow the arrow, you can continue on the path to the steep hike up to summit Blueberry Mountain at 1,750 feet for some incredible views (4.5 miles roundtrip). 

What to know about Rattlesnake Pool

This is Maine we're talking about, and it can get cold in the winter. If you're looking to lounge by the swimming hole a bit, the summer is a better option. Plus, if you go in August, it's the perfect time to pick the blueberries that give the mountain its name. The pool itself is going to be cold if you decide to go for a dip, and that's true year-round. Another thing to keep in mind is that there are usually bugs in the summer, so bug spray is a good idea. You can even try this DIY version if you aren't comfortable with the more chemical-based bug sprays.

You are permitted to bring your dog with you on a leash, but it's important to be aware that there are black bears in the area. Explore has you covered with tips on how to survive a bear attack, though this is a popular hiking area. It's unlikely, but it's good information to have if you love hiking.