"Once you see open water as something to be entered, rather than driven around, flown over or stopped at the brink of, then even familiar landscapes become rife with adventure. [When] you break the surface of the water itself ... you move from one realm into another: a realm of freedom, adventure, magic and occasionally of danger." -- Robert Macfarlane (The Outdoor Swimming Society)

SwimMaine is a blog for people who would like to experience the beauty and nature of Maine's lakes and coastline through swimming. It is for those who enjoy swimming in Maine's fresh air and open sky. Whether you are an experienced swimmer or a novice, the intent of this blog is to provide you information so that you can safely choose a swimming experience that will enrich your life, as you become an explorer of an underwater world seldom seen by others.

Information is easily available on such outdoor activities as hiking and biking trails in Maine. However, finding information about swimming "trails," or nice places to swim, is more difficult. This blog has been developed to document information about these places - and your help is needed to provide such information. Do you have a favorite swimming place that you would like to let others know about? Please e-mail SwimMaine to send in your report on outdoor swimming trails. We'll post it here and placemark it on our SwimMaine map.

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Friday, July 8, 2011

9. Tunk Lake

Name of Water Body: Tunk Lake
Town(s): Hancock County - off Rt. 182
Google map
Type of Water Body: Lake
Unique Feature(s): Clarity of water is crystal with nice sandy beach after a short walk through a woods trail.
Description: A family beach; I believe it is town owned.
Fee: Free
Facilities: None
Parking: Small Parking lot, and plenty of roadside parking.
Camping: No
Swimming Trail (with approximate distances): Upon entering the water you can swim along the shore line to the left, as it is very sandy, with minimal weeds. You also can swim out across the lake. It is quite a distance, for someone like me, but for someone who likes to swim long distances, I would say it is probably about 2 -3 miles long and about 2 miles wide. To the right, there is a big patch of weeds so I would suggest staying out of that area. The water is pretty shallow at first, but after going out about 1200 feet it then becomes deep. It appears to be a gradual increase in depth, as there was no big drop off. I do not know the exact depth, however, it is at least 10ft. It is pretty remote so I do not suggest solo swimming unless you are an expert swimmer.
Directions: From Rt. 1 N. in Ellsworth turn Left onto Rt. 182 E. go 17.7 miles on the right there will be a dirt road that leads into the parking lot. The trail to walk down to the water is in the back left corner of parking lot.
Other Info:
Date Updated: 7/7/2011
Submitted By: Anne Mosher


  1. I believe you are describing Spring River Lake in this article. After reading this, we drove around Tunk Lake and could not find and public access. Spring River Lake public access spot matches what you wrote about though.

    1. I can confirm that this is Tunk Lake described, as I visited it this weekend via Tunk Lake Road, along the water's southern border. The parking area is very small and extremely wooded, so perhaps easy to miss, though we saw signs (likely new) to guide us.

  2. To add further to the confusion, there is a little Tunk Lake as well. That def has a beach: