• Views from Penobscot Mountain summit.


    National Park Maine

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  • 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.

  • Bubble Pond Carriage Road closure

    Bubble Pond Carriage Road will be closed to all traffic Monday 9/15- Wednesday 9/17 from the parking lot to Triad-Day Mountain Bridge. More »

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?

The wide carriage road is lined by the spring foliage of birch trees.

Acadia National Park's carriage road system, built by John D. Rockefeller Jr., has been called “the finest example of broken stone roads designed for horse-drawn vehicles still extant in America.” Today, you can hike or bike 45 miles of these scenic carriage roads in the park.