Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Favorite Swimming Hole: The Mills

The calendar tells me that today is the first day of autumn,
although it still feels like summer. In Maine, the temperature
starts to turn with the turn of the calendar to Labor Day.
An early fall view at the Pond
This year the temperatures stayed in the 70s and 80s throughout most of September, which is unusual. Just this week the overnight temperatures have been dropping down to the 40s and 50s. I likely took my last swim of the summer on Sunday when the water started to get its fall chill. September was actually a great swimming month, and I was very happy with how much swimming I was able to do. The best place on earth to swim is a secret that we share with only our luckiest of friends, and we call it the Pond, but this post is about the Mills, a great public swimming hole.
Located at one end of Damariscotta Lake, the Mills is a neighborhood and a swimming hole. We refer to them the same. I have yet to research the complete history of the Mills, but we do visit it frequently in the spring for the alewives run (another post for another time).

This swimming hole has good jumping spots (from rocks and a bridge) and a small sand beach, which leads to shallow water that gradually slopes to deeper water, good for the little kids or faint of heart (I have yet to jump from the bridge)! There is a no-wake zone buoy, and it makes for a good spot to swim to.
The two sides of the "hole" are separated on land by a building that is currently a residence. It sits smack dab in the middle of this town-owned park and directly on the water--imagine having a lake for your front yard! The park has no facilities, but there is a picnic table, a bench, and posted hours for usage. Parking is in short supply, but for a short walk there is more parking just up the road.
On any given hot day the Mills is busy with all ages swimming. We usually go in the evenings when when we need a quick cooling recharge. We often see friends or meet new people, and its always fun.
So, goodbye to summer and swimming. In three months we'll drive through the Mills and see the ice forming over the top of the water and in about eight months, we'll watch for the water to peek through the ice, just the start of what hopes to be another great swimming season.


The Mills at dusk


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