Branch Lake– a series of trails just outside of Ellsworth
Distance: 3 miles from parking lot to lake and around shore trail. Other trails available to extend hike.
Location: Ellsworth, Maine. Just off route 1a (Bangor Rd).
Parking: Parking area big enough for may 4 or 5 cars but plenty of space along the dirt road for more
Use: Hiking, snow shoeing, running, x-country skiing.
Wildlife: Good chance for deer sightings and rabbits
Wilderness Experience: It’s not far from Ellsworth and busy route 1a, but it’s far enough from them both that you really feel like you’re much further away. The initial walk in is on old open roads but there are several trails that are more remote leading off to the sides. `Once you reach the lake you have a good chance of seeing boaters unless you go in winter like I did. I wouldn’t say it’s a busy trail system, but don’t be surprised to see someone else there too.
Trail: Hard packed road surface at times, but also dirt and forest trail with some roots but not any elevation gain or rocky sections.
Summit: There are no mountains here and no climbing. What you will enjoy are wide views of Branch Lake. This is the real payoff and it is worth it