Breakneck Ridge Farm
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Name:            Breakneck Ridge Farm

Address:        Stephen & Diana Hobart

                       Breakneck Ridge Farm

                       160 Mountain Road

                       Blanchard Twp., Maine


Phone:           207-997-3922

Toll-Free:      866-ME-SYRUP



Gift Shop Hours:

July through August:

Wednesday through Friday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Products and Services:

-maple syrup

-buffalo meat

-maple butter

-farm store and gift shop

-Maine-made products

-specialty foods

-maple Italian salad dressing

-Maine Maple Sunday

-educational tours

-online ordering

-wagon rides

What Makes Breakneck Ridge Farm Unique?

The America bison, commonly called buffalo, has played a significant role in our country.  For centuries, massive herds of buffalo roamed freely through the plains.  They were revered by many Native American tribes.  Since the buffalo were valued for food and their hides were sources of clothing and shelter, their migrations were often followed.  In the nineteenth century the American Buffalo population was almost decimated by the extensive commercial hunting and the effects of disease from the introduction of domestic cattle.  Since more farms have elected to raise bison, their populations are on the rebound.  There are less than ten farms in Maine that raise buffalo and Breakneck Ridge Farm in Blanchard Township is one of them.

Breakneck Ridge Farm is owned and operated by Stephen and Diana Hobart.  It is named after Breakneck Ridge, which is a ridge measuring 372 meters above sea level, that is situated on the north side of their property.  Individuals interested in visiting Breakneck Ridge Farm can turn on to the Blanchard Road in Monson.  After traveling four-and-a-half miles,  the road turns into the Mountain Road.  In just a one-half mile distance on the Mountain Road,  visitors are treated to a scenic wide expanse of open fields and woods. 

The panoramic views of the Piscataquis River Valley and Russell Mountain (668 meters above sea level) that are visible from the farm on a clear day are quite remarkable.  Unique Maine Farms has clocked over 22,000 miles

exploring Maine farms in the past seventeen months.  When we arrived at Breakneck Ridge Farm, unfortunately there were only about ten minutes of time to take photos before the arrival of torrential downpours that showed no signs of letting up.

It is hoped that a return visit can be scheduled to Breakneck Ridge Farm so that photos of the views and additional bright outside photos around the farm can be shared. Diana Hobart, a teacher, was attending a workshop that day, so hopefully on the return visit there will be a chance to visit with her and learn more about the recipes that are posted each month on the Breakneck Ridge Farm’s website.

In 1979, Diana and Stephen decided to become involved in farming.  They fenced a five-acre area on their property and fallow deer were raised.  The Hobarts decided to clear the white spruce that had been planted by Stephen’s grandparents in the 1950’s and considerably expand the fenced area.  In 2002, they began raising American Buffalo. By 2006,  all the fallow deer were replaced with the bison.  They presently have a herd of sixty head.

If you have never had the opportunity to see buffalo up close, they truly are magnificent animals.  They are the largest existing land animal in our country.  Adult males can weigh over two thousand pounds.  The average weight of a newborn buffalo is thirty pounds.

The American Buffalo that the Hobarts raise are grass-fed.  In the summer they feed on the pasture.  The hay that has been harvested from their fields is fed to them during the winter.  The buffalo meat is processed at a USDA inspected plant in nearby Guilford.  It is vacuumed-packed to extend its shelf life. Nutritional studies have recommended buffalo meat because it is low in cholesterol and fat.  It is high in Omega3 and beta-carotene.  It also has a higher CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) content which is helpful in the prevention of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and obesity.  The buffalo meat sold by the Hobarts contains no chemicals or growth hormones or stimulants.

The Hobarts sell a large variety of American Buffalo steaks including tenderloin, New York strip, rib eye, top sirloin, top round, and sirloin tip.  Their buffalo roasts include tenderloin, rib eye, New York whole, top round, sirloin tip, eye of round, and bottom round.  They also offer short ribs, ground patties, stew meat, beef kabobs, and limited amounts of ground burger.

Because American Buffalo are wild animals they are often unpredictable.  The Hobarts’ herd is surrounded by sturdy tall fencing systems.  Rotational grazing is practiced at Breakneck Ridge Farm so there are times during the year where the herd is not visible from the road.  The Hobarts post the grazing schedule of their buffalo online and also on a sign at the end of their driveway so potential visitors can plan their trip on a day that the buffalo will be able to be seen.

In addition to the many visitors who make the trip to Blanchard to view the bison, individuals have traveled to Breakneck Ridge Farm since 1987, to purchase maple syrup from the Hobarts.  They operate a sugar house in the spring and welcome visitors to their Maine Maple Sunday Open House on the fourth Sunday in March each year.  Their maple syrup is sold in a variety of amounts from small nip bottles to gallon jugs.  Some of the syrup is packaged in plastic containers, while some is offered in fancy glass bottles in the shape of a maple leaf.  Beautiful pictures of a moose, bear, buffalo, eagle, or loon are etched on some of the bottles.

As the years have gone by, Stephen and Diana have expanded their maple syrup offerings.  They now also carry maple candy, maple butter, and maple spices. Diana’s Maple Syrup Italian Dressing has received rave reviews.  It is a combination of sweet maple syrup and zesty Italian dressing that can be used on salads or as a marinade or glaze for chicken, pork, or fish.  It is offered in 6.8 oz. and quart bottles. 

The Hobart’s buffalo meat and their maple syrup products are available in their gift shop which is open in July and August from Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  They sell their farm products online through their website.  A webpage in this profile lists the restaurants and retail outlets where Breakneck Ridge Farm products are sold.

Stephen and Diana Hobart have received several awards for their farming practices.  They are active in the Maine Maple Producers Association and the National Bison Association. According to the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s website, the Hobarts were able to introduce no-till seeding and a unique watering and manure storage system because of the support of the NRCS’s cost-share programs. The sediment retention erosion control that the Hobarts introduced on their wood roads helped to protect their soil and water.  They were chosen as the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District’s

Cooperators of the Year in 1990 and 2007.

In 1995, Stephen and Diana were recognized as Maine’s Outstanding Tree Farmers.  Over the years they have developed a sound forest management plan and practiced timber stand improvement and selective harvesting.  Steve and Diana have been active in their community serving on various committees and supporting the local food movement.   They carry products in their gift shop from Maine producers.

While the Hobarts have embraced new technologies is their maple syrup business and in their farming they have also continued to honor traditional farming methods. It is interesting to observe how they have chosen to bring back the farmland on their property. 


The deorganization of Blanchard Plantation, where their farm is located, took place in 1984.  The Blanchard Preservation Society was formed to preserve the public buildings and the history of the town.  Stephen and Diana have been active members of the Society and have posted information about the meetings and the activities on their farm website.  It appears that the Hobarts have a strong interest in honoring the land and historic properties.  It seems quite fitting that their present farm activities focus on time-honored endeavors - the gathering of sap for the production of maple syrup, and the raising of the American Buffalo - animals that at one time almost faced extinction.

Stephen and Diana Hobart.  Picture courtesy of the National Resources Conservation Service’s website.

Photo courtesy of the Breakneck Ridge Farm website.

Photo courtesy of the Breakneck Ridge Farm website.