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Tumbledown Mountain

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
A.M.C. Route T 
A.M.C. Route Variation T 
Central Groove T 
North Peak Western Slab T 
Paradis Gully (Ice Climb) T 
Western Edge of East Peak. T 
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From MP's sister site:

Tumbledown Mountain Rock Climbing 


Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Location: 44.7447, -70.5524 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 10,393
Administrators: Ladd, Jonathan Steitzer, Robert Hall, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: bradley white on Jul 31, 2009  with updates from Gabriel Harper and 1 more
Forecast:
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BETA PHOTO: Closeup of the AMC Route (green) and the AMC Route...

Description 

[2017 Note by RHall, Admin.- Mountainproject user Ron Birk reports that " [in 2016] the [climber's path] was decent and easy to follow. It started at a clearing with good views of the cliff, on the left. You followed yellow/red blazes through the woods and boulder field (which had cairns) and led straight to the cliff and start of the routes." Thanks for the update Ron.

Since I climbed here about 20 years ago much has changed. Knees are older and the trail has eroded more. (Hurricane Irene?)

Yup, the Loop Trail is STEEP...Yup, where the abandoned trail veered off left at the "viewing ledges" [now the "climber's path"] 1/3 of the way up the Mtn is now grown in. The 2nd half of the "Loop Trail" is the continuously steepest trail I have ever done in 65 years of hiking. Only the Class3 ascent of Chimney Peak from the Pamola-ChimneyPeak gap comes close, and that was dry and short.

Let us now continue with Bradly White's excellent description, annotated with 2017 undates...]


Tumbledown Mt. is a massif mountain with three distinctive peaks West, East and North. The West Peak is gotten to by the Loop Trail. It's a strenuous hike. Below its summit is the 700+ granite cliff that is known as the Great Ledge by hikers. It has had a large recent rock slide. Not problematic to rock climbing.

The ledge is about 400ft and then a large tree band. After the trees there are many shorter sections of cliff below this summit that start as overhangs and steep corner chimneys before they're slab finishes. The main lower ledge has a steep slab section on it's western side. The central section is a giant v groove with tree band ledges and a series of overhangs are on it's eastern side. [2017 Note- It looks as if there's been a major rockfall in this "central section". RHall Admin. The climbs "AMC Route" and "AMC Direct" are significantly left of the obvious orange-colored rock scar left by this rockfall.] Far to the west of this ledge is another ledge that is shorter, approximately 300ft and mostly steep slab that terminates below the summit in forest. [2017 NOTE- I think that Bradly is talking about the "southwest slab(s)" when he says "far to the west". I think he means even far west of the old chimney hiking route that was abandoned about 20 years ago after rockfall there destroyed its iron rungs. ]

The East Peak isn't as high as 700ft of cliff but it isn't short either, possibly 500ft of uninterrupted rock climbing on it's most western side. The base of this wall is reached by the Brook trail. The central and eastern side of the East Peak are slab bands divided by tall trees. A rock climber below will just have to go up route finding as they go because below this peak the slab visualization is blocked by trees except the furthest western edge. When the brook begins to be seen on the trail about 1 mile up head west and the base will become noticeable.

The North Peak has no trail to it. From the summit of the East Peak it is easily approached. The southwestern slab has the only decent climbing on it, possibly 200ft. Quite easy after getting past the initial short steep start to gain the slab section.

There has been little to no activity on this mountain. There was an old A.M.C. climb but I believe it is mostly gone from the rock slide. [2017 Note- The AMC "Routes" are still intact, unaffected by either the rockfall of 20-25 years ago on the "chimney hiking trail" or the rockfall that created the orange scar. R Hall Admin.]

The approach to the Great Ledges and summit cliffs must be endured before the technical climbing begins. It is a steep couple of miles of steep hiking up the Loop Trail. [2017 Note- Actually, it is a couple of miles, but the first half of the trail is essentially flat, thus making the 2nd half even steeper. It is REALLY STEEP, think: "Wildcat A" from Carter Notch, or Huntington Ravine Trail". That being said, the upper half of the "Loop Trail" between the flat, open ledges and the summit area is even steeper! This UPPER HALF CAN NOT BE RECOMMENDED AS A DESCENT ROUTE WITH PACKS AND GEAR. RHall Admin.]

Tumbledown Mt. is not a true Alpine condition mountain but it is not an off the road excursion either. Summer climbing should always be safe from Albinism conditions because the summit is in the 3000ft range and bad weather approaching can be seen at a great distance. The rest of the year climbers should be prepared for the worst weather possible. Because of its location the environment is similar to the N.H. White Mountains environment before above tree line and above Cannon Cliff.

Basically the forest between cliff is gnarly pine trees.

The Mt. Blue Campground is nearby at Webb Lake. There are large sections of private land around this mountain. Camping nearby and on the the mountain would be trespassing.
This mountain is not for the sport climbing enthusiast. The trail is nearby the Great Ledges and rock trundling shouldn't be done on purpose.

Getting There 

[2017 Note- From the west: Take Rt 2 eastbound through Bethel, ME continuing East through Rumford Point to Rumford. Take Rt 120 North about 3 miles and turn right to cross the Swift river, then left on Rt 17 north. (If you miss 120 you can pick up 17 in Rumford) Go about 9 miles north on Rt17. In Byron (at Coos Falls Park) turn right onto Byron Center Road, and in 1/4 mile bear left onto Dingle Hill Rd. Take this paved-and-dirt road up and over the height-of-land for about 4 1/2 miles to a dirt parking lot on the left for the Loop Trail. From North Conway NH, figure 2+ hrs solid driving.]


[...from the East: from Rt2 in Drydon (Wilton) take Rt 156 north 15+/- miles (Rt 142 joins at about 13 miles) to the town of Weld Corner, turn left at Webb Corner. Within about 1/2 mile, a logging road (Byron Road) leaves straight ahead in a 90 degree turn. The Brook Trail leaves Byron Road approximately 4.4 miles from Webb Corner. The Loop Trail also begins on Byron Road approximately 5.8 miles from Webb Corner. Both the Loop and Brook Trail heads are fairly well marked but use your common sense and watch the car's odometer.

Approach Hike: Take the Loop Trail, which is fairly flat for the first mile to a huge boulder, then climbs very steeply for 700-800 vertical feet (in about 1/3 mile) to a flat area with open slabs leading left off the trail. According to reports (see photos posted by Ron Birk), the climber's path leads off of these open slabs (the "viewing slabs", although in a couple of years the growth may prevent viewing!) to the base area of the AMC Route(s). I know 20 yrs ago the abandoned trail started here, the rocks for the once-huge cairn are now used to keep hikers on the main Loop Trail. When we recently hiked the Mtn it took an hour to reach this point with just day packs.

Climbing Season

For the All Locations area.

Weather station 13.5 miles from here

6 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',4],['2 Stars',1],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',5],['5.7',0],['5.8',0],['5.9',0],['5.10',0],['5.11',0],['5.12',0],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Tumbledown Mountain

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Tumbledown Mountain:
Paradis Gully (Ice Climb)   WI2 M1     Trad, Mixed, Ice, 2 pitches, 300'   
A.M.C. Route Variation   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, 3 pitches   
A.M.C. Route   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, 4 pitches, 600'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Tumbledown Mountain

Featured Route For Tumbledown Mountain
Rock Climbing Photo: Base of the climb. The left crack and big v notch ...

A.M.C. Route Variation 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b  Maine : Tumbledown Mountain
A really nice route at an extraordinary scenic location. Three long pitches of mostly face climbing along cracks and flakes.P1. Climb the committing right crack and through a weakness. Continue along the face, passing some bushes, veering slightly right all the way to a two bolt anchor on a nice tree ledge. P2. Continue straight up the exciting face along more cracks and flakes to another two bolt anchor, just below a big tree filled ledge. Here you can optionally keep climbing (or move the bela...[more]   Browse More Classics in Maine

Photos of Tumbledown Mountain Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Tumbledown from Webb Lake Loop Trail (center, in b...
BETA PHOTO: Tumbledown from Webb Lake Loop Trail (center, in b...
Rock Climbing Photo: Start of Loop Tr. It's well marked and has a p...
BETA PHOTO: Start of Loop Tr. It's well marked and has a p...
Rock Climbing Photo: Start of climbers trail. After the steep part of t...
BETA PHOTO: Start of climbers trail. After the steep part of t...
Rock Climbing Photo: Map of area. Sorry for bad quality. It's a pic...
BETA PHOTO: Map of area. Sorry for bad quality. It's a pic...
Rock Climbing Photo: The second Pitch of something we did. Bolted ancho...
The second Pitch of something we did. Bolted ancho...
Rock Climbing Photo: West Peak trail and Loop Trail
BETA PHOTO: West Peak trail and Loop Trail
Rock Climbing Photo: West Peak
BETA PHOTO: West Peak
Rock Climbing Photo: View from the climbs on Tumbledown.
View from the climbs on Tumbledown.
Rock Climbing Photo: Tumbledown north peak
BETA PHOTO: Tumbledown north peak
Rock Climbing Photo: West end crag and route of old gully trail.
BETA PHOTO: West end crag and route of old gully trail.
Rock Climbing Photo: This is the top part of the 2nd pitch of (I think)...
BETA PHOTO: This is the top part of the 2nd pitch of (I think)...
Rock Climbing Photo: AMC Route area
BETA PHOTO: AMC Route area
Rock Climbing Photo: Arete to the right after going through "Fat M...
BETA PHOTO: Arete to the right after going through "Fat M...
Rock Climbing Photo: Loop Trail Boulder West side. Its tall enough I co...
BETA PHOTO: Loop Trail Boulder West side. Its tall enough I co...
Rock Climbing Photo: Loop Trail Boulder South Side. Lots of problems to...
BETA PHOTO: Loop Trail Boulder South Side. Lots of problems to...
Rock Climbing Photo: Loop Trail Boulder. Very Highball. Same boulder th...
BETA PHOTO: Loop Trail Boulder. Very Highball. Same boulder th...
Rock Climbing Photo: The view approaching the AMC Route area of Tumbled...
BETA PHOTO: The view approaching the AMC Route area of Tumbled...
Rock Climbing Photo: Red wall area
BETA PHOTO: Red wall area
Rock Climbing Photo: Tumbledown east peak crags (right) and Loop Trail/...
BETA PHOTO: Tumbledown east peak crags (right) and Loop Trail/...
Rock Climbing Photo: December 11, 2016
December 11, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: This is the 1st pitch of (I think) the AMC route. ...
BETA PHOTO: This is the 1st pitch of (I think) the AMC route. ...

Comments on Tumbledown Mountain Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 8, 2017
By John Halupowski
From: Intervale, N.H.
Apr 11, 2010
Topping out on this cliff rewards you with a 360 degree view of Maines lakes and peaks that is OUTRAGEOUS!
By andyscott
From: Massachusetts
Feb 3, 2011
There is great bouldering on the loop trail I did here about two summers ago. There is one boulder at the beginning of the loop trail that is massive. It has good problems all around it. It has one small cave where lots of eliminates can be made. Also, there is a stunning overhanging finger crack, 30-40 feet tall, sharp, and crystally looking on the backside of the boulder opposite of the trail. I was VERY suprised when I stumbled upon this one. If anyone has any more information about bouldering here please tell!
By jim.dangle
Dec 4, 2012
Anyone been here in winter?

Jim
By john strand
From: southern colo
Dec 5, 2012
The quartzy finger crack is indeed fearsome, and bloody. 12B ???
By ccaissie
From: Whitefield, ME
Dec 17, 2012
Winter is a great time to get up on top. Snowshoes up the steep Brook Trail puts you at the tarn on top. If the road into the park is clear of snow, drive to the trailhead, but otherwise the several miles in are skiable. Best to call the Weld General Store and get the update, promising to shop there when you arrive.

manta.com/c/mm21fbl/weld-s-gen...
Rock Climbing Photo: View from pond to West and North peaks, in reply t...
View from pond to West and North peaks, in reply to "Winter?" question.
By Mikie
Dec 22, 2012
FA on the crystally finger crack by Ryan Howes, a couple years ago.
By Ryan Gibbs
Aug 31, 2015
Correction: There is in fact a herd path that leads from the west peak to the north peak.
By Peter Lewis
From: Bridgton, Maine
Jun 23, 2016
Tumbledown is a very special place. Walking the ridge on top down to the little tarn feels more like being at 10k feet out west than on a small mountain in Maine. I would put this right up there with the Bigelows or the Moat Range traverse in NH (although both are longer). Quite rugged for its diminutive size and totally worth exploring (climbing or even just hiking).
By Dan M. S.
From: Buckfield, ME
Apr 18, 2017
Does anyone have guidance about what sort of protection is needed? I'd like to do this in June, but only have experience putting cams and the occasional nut in sandstone...Not too much of an idea what to expect with Maine granite.
By Peter Lewis
From: Bridgton, Maine
Aug 8, 2017
In response to Dan M.S., on the AMC Variation a light rack to 2.5" is all you will need. Stoppers and Tricams work very well, and there are plenty of places for cams, but you won't need anything beyond a gold Camalot. We used some small Aliens and brass nuts, so make sure you have some smaller gear (of course, we also may have been off-route and lost in thin-gear-land).
By Ryan Gibbs
Aug 8, 2017
I second Peter's comments. Tricam heaven up there (Pink, red, and brown in particular) and generally eats up small gear. Generally you can always find a place to plug in your #3, but most of the time not really necessary.

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