• Views from Penobscot Mountain summit.


    National Park Maine

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  • Trail Closures: Peregrine Falcon Nesting

    Precipice Cliff, Valley Cove, and Jordan Cliff areas are closed to all public entry until further notice for peregrine falcon nesting season. More »

  • Cultural Connections programs rescheduled for 7/16/2014 due to weather

    Ash Log Pounding demo will take place today 11 am-3 pm at the Abbe Museum downtown (26 Mount Desert St, Bar Harbor). The Burnurwurbskek Singers have been rescheduled to perform on Cadillac Summit next Wed, July 23 at 11 am.

  • Trail Closure: Gorge Path weekdays, 7 am - 4 pm

    The section of the Gorge Path between the Hemlock Path intersection and the A. Murray Young Trail intersection is closed until rehabilitation work is completed. The closure will be in effect Mondays through Fridays only, from 7 am to 4 pm.

Water Resources

Jordan Pond from South Bubble

At 150 feet, Jordan Pond is the deepest lake in Acadia.

Water resources are among the most dominant features of the landscape at Acadia National Park. They are integral to ecosystem health and function and are fundamental to a variety of recreational pursuits including fishing, sightseeing, canoeing, sailing, and swimming. Protection of the scientific and scenic attributes associated with park lakes, streams, and wetlands, and their use as a source of public drinking water, were significant factors in the park's establishment and form the core of the park's water resources program.

Water resources within or adjacent to the park include 14 Great Ponds (lakes greater than 4 hectares/10 acres), 10 smaller ponds, more than two dozen named streams, and 10 named wetland areas. Lakes and ponds cover about 1,052 ha, and wetlands cover about 1,670 ha (equivalent to approximately 7.4% and 10.1%, respectively, of the park's area).

Objectives of the water resource program are to:

  1. provide baseline information on park water quality;
  2. serve as an early warning system for human induced changes and threats such as non-point source pollution (cultural eutrophication), impacts to visitor health (bacterial contamination), acidic deposition, and climate change;
  3. identify potential pollution sources; and
  4. track water quality trends.

In recent years the park has started to develop a core long-term monitoring program for freshwater resources. Two sets of selected lakes have been identified for monitoring the effects of atmospheric deposition/acidification and cultural eutrophication, the two greatest threats to freshwater ecosystems identified in a workshop of water resource professionals. The park also conducts monitoring of benthic macroinvertebrates and periodic bacterial monitoring at park swim beaches.

Recently completed water related research at Acadia includes:

  • a hydrological characterization of the Northeast Creek estuary;
  • an inventory and assessment of fisheries resources;
  • and PrimeNet studies related to spatial patterns of atmospheric deposition, assessment of the ecological effects of atmospheric deposition of nitrogen and mercury, and possible impacts to amphibians and other biota.

Acadia's water program is conducted in collaboration with the NPS Water Resources Division, Maine Department of Environmental Protection, the Water Research Institute at the University of Maine, and the United States Geological Survey.


Did You Know?

Image of the Guide's Guide cover

The Guide's Guide to Acadia National Park, originally created to share important information about the park's facilities and natural and cultural resources with commercial guides, is available to the public on this website. The guide contains everything you would want to know about the park. More...