• 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.

Hiking Trails

Ranger walk, Precipice Trail, 1960's.

Ranger walk, Precipice Trail, 1960's.

The hiking trail system in the Mount Desert Island section of Acadia National Park offers outstanding hiking opportunities for day hikers. It is also a cultural resource of national significance because of its early origins with the village improvement associations on the island and the high level of design and craftsmanship of individual trails. This craftsmanship is most evident in the steps, retaining walls, and rock pavement built from native granite. In 2002 a hiking trails plan was completed to guide maintenance and management.

Hiking trail use was monitored from 1999-2003 by conducting a census of entries to the entire system on two consecutive days in the first week of August. The 2003 report summarizes all five years. In 2008, we began a long-term monitoring program using electronic trail counters on the Gorham Mountain Trail and the Pemetic Mountain Trail (near the Triad). We also monitor hiking use each year on several mountain summits. For more information on the trail counters and hiker use of summits, see the Mountain Summits page, or view our 2008 report on summits and trails now.

We have also inventoried visitor-created trails on Little Moose Island and along Ocean Drive and are actively managing to reduce their number.

Researchers from Virginia Tech inventoried erosion conditions for the entire hiking trail system on Mount Desert Island in 2007 and conducted a study evaluating the efficacy of several education and site management techniques in keeping hikers on the Gorham Mountain Trail. Reports should be available soon.

For more trails and hiking information, see the Leave No Trace page.
Deer Brook Trail erosion
Deer Brook Trail erosion

Did You Know?

A man boards the Island Explorer bus.

Since 1999, propane-powered Island Explorer buses have carried more than two million passengers in Acadia National Park, eliminating more than 685,000 automobile trips and preventing 6,444 tons of greenhouse gases. The fare-free buses are supported by your entrance fees. More...