Elevation - 3455 (South), 3489 (North)
Posted Distance: 8.4 Miles (Slaughter Pond - South Peak)
Suggested Time: 6 Hours
Our Time: 7 Hours
Doubletop has two peaks and three points of entry - two of which are on the South side of the park at the Kidney Campground turnoff. We took the Slaughter Pond entry which shaves about 20 minutes off of either side of the hike.
There is a flat walk up to the base of Doubletop mountain that starts off with a stream crossing followed by a tremendous if not intimidating view of the climb to come (pictured). It could have been either the time of year or the swampy surroundings, but we found the blackflies particularly bad on this hike.
The trail remains flat for about an hour before meeting up with a stream. Here the ascent begins up the stream for roughly 60 minutes. At the conclusion of the stream the true test of this mountain begins. An increasingly steep incline followed by a near bouldering experience separates you from the South peak of Doubletop where there is a brilliant view of Katahdin and the rest of the park. We unfortunately did not have the energy or desire to continue the .3 miles to the higher North Peak.
Doubletop can also be reached by Nesowadnehunk campground which will bring you diretly to the North Peak. We plan on tackling that route once we recover from the first thrashing we took on Doubletop
Ray's Thoughts: Granted, this was our first hike in a long time - and probably not a good one to start with - but nonetheless it's still a very challenging and often un-enjoyable. The guide at the front sold it to us based on it's views - which certainly were fantastic. However the terribly long stretch of swampy walking combined with an steep climb that was as much of an upper body workout as a lowerbody workout has put Doubletop, from the south, very low on my list of walks to do again.
I have heard that it's a longer but more gradual (less steep) walk from the North.