Superintendent's Compendium

Superintendent’s Compendium
Of Designations, Closures, Permit Requirements and Other Restrictions Imposed Under Discretionary Authority
— Approved Kevin Schneider, Superintendent, April 30, 2018

A. Introduction

B. Superintendent’s Compendium

I. 36 CFR §1.5 VISITING HOURS, PUBLIC USE LIMITS, CLOSURES,
AND AREA DESIGNATIONS FOR SPECIFIC USE OR ACTIVITIES

Hours of Operation
Parkwide
Roads
Roadside Parking
Carriage Roads
Picnic Areas
Campgrounds
Attractions and Facilities
Mount Desert Island Trails and Environs
Mount Desert Island / Acadia National Park Streams
Saint Croix Island International Historic Site
IslandsSpecific Uses

II. 36 CFR §1.6 – ACTIVITIES THAT REQUIRE A PERMIT

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III. GENERAL REGULATIONS

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36 CFR §2.1 – PRESERVATION OF NATURAL, CULTURAL AND ARCHEOLOGICAL RESOURCES
36 CFR §2.2 - WILDLIFE PROTECTION
36 CFR §2.3 – FISHING
36 CFR §2.4 – WEAPONS, TRAPS, AND NETS
36 CFR §2.10 – CAMPING and FOOD STORAGE
36 CFR §2.11 – PICNICKING
36 CFR §2.13 – FIRES
36 CFR §2.14 – SANITATION and REFUSE
36 CFR §2.15 – PETS
36 CFR §2.16 – HORSES and PACK ANIMALS
36 CFR §2.18 – SNOWMOBILES
36 CFR §2.19 – WINTER ACTIVITIES
36 CFR §2.20 – SKATING, SKATEBOARDS and SIMILAR DEVICES
36 CFR §2.21 – SMOKING
36 CFR §2.23 – RECREATION FEES
36 CFR §2.35 – ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES
36 CFR §2.51-D – FIRST AMMENDMENT ACTIVITIES
36 CFR §2.52 – SALE OR DISTRIBUTION OF PRINTED MATTER
36 CFR §2.62 – MEMORIALIZATION


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36 CFR §3.12 – USING A VESSEL TO TOW A PERSON
36 CFR §3.16 – SWIMMING AND WADING
36 CFR §3.17 – SWIMMING AREAS AND BEACHES
36 CFR §3.18 – SCUBA AND SNORKELING
36 CFR §3.19 – USE OF SUBMERSIBLES
36 CFR §3.7 – PERSONAL FLOATATION DEVICE (PFD) REQUIREMENTS
36 CFR §3.8 – BOATING OPERATIONS
36 CFR §4.11 – VEHICLE LOAD, WEIGHT AND SIZE LIMITS
36 CFR §4.13 – OBSTRUCTING TRAFFIC
36 CFR §4.21 – SPEED LIMITS
36 CFR §4.30 – BICYCLES
36 CFR §4.31 – HITCHHIKING
36 CFR §5.1 – ADVERTISEMENTS
36 CFR §5.3 – BUSINESS OPERATIONS
36 CFR §5.4 – COMMERCIAL PASSENGER-CARRYING MOTOR VEHICLES
36 CFR §5.5 – COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHY
36 CFR §5.6 – COMMERCIAL VEHICLES
36 CFR §5.7 – CONSTRUCTION OF BUILDINGS OR OTHER FACILITIES
36 CFR §5.10 – EATING, DRINKING, OR LODGING ESTABLISHMENTS
36 CFR §7.56 – ACADIA NATIONAL PARK SPECIAL REGULATIONS

 

A. INTRODUCTION

1. Superintendent’s Compendium Described

The Superintendent’s Compendium is the summary of park specific rules implemented under 36 Code of Federal Regulations (36 CFR). It serves as public notice, identifies areas closed for public use, provides a list of activities requiring either a special use permit or reservation, and elaborates on public use and resource protection regulations pertaining specifically to the administration of the park. The Superintendent’s Compendium does not repeat regulations found in 36 CFR and other United States Code and CFR Titles, which are enforced without further elaboration at the park level.

The regulations contained in 36 CFR, Parts 1-7, are the basic mechanism used by the National Park Service (NPS) to preserve and protect the natural and cultural resources of the park and to protect visitors and property within the park. Parts 1 through 6 are general regulations applicable to all areas of the National Park system, and Part 7 contains special regulations specific to individual parks. Each of these Parts has many sections and subsections articulating specific provisions. Within some of these Part 1-7 sections and subsections, the Superintendent is granted discretionary authority to develop local rules to be responsive to the needs of a specific park resource or activity, park plan, program, and/or special needs of the general public.

As an example, 36 CFR 1.5(a) Closures and Public Use Limits provides the Superintendent certain discretion in allowing or disallowing certain activities. The authority granted by the Section, however, requires the Superintendent to comply with the Administrative Procedures Act (6 USC Section 551), which requires public notice on actions with major impact on visitor use patterns, park resources or those that are highly controversial in nature.

Another example is 36 CFR 1.6 Permits, which allows the Superintendent to require a permit for certain uses and activities in the park. This Section, however, requires that a list of activities needing a permit (and a fee schedule for the various types of permits) be maintained by the park.

A final example is 36 CFR 2.1(c) (1) Preservation of Natural, Cultural and Archeological Resources, which provides the Superintendent the authority to designate certain fruits, nuts, berries or unoccupied seashells which may be gathered by hand for personal use or consumption. This activity can occur, however, only if a written determination shows that the allowed activity does not adversely affect park wildlife, the reproductive potential of a plant species, or otherwise adversely affect park resources.

This Compendium should be used in conjunction with Title 36 CFR, Parts 1-7, to more fully understand the regulations governing the use and enjoyment of all the areas of the National Park System.

A copy of Title 36, CFR, can be purchased from the U.S. Government Printing Office at:

Superintendent of Documents
P.O. Box 371954
Pittsburgh, PA 15250-7954


The CFR is also available on the Internet at:

http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_05/36cfrv1_05.html

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2. Laws and Policies Allowing the Superintendent to Develop This Compendium

The National Park Service (NPS) is granted broad statutory authority under 54 United States Code (U.S.C.) §102701 (Organic Act of 1916, as amended) to “…regulate the use of the Federal areas known as national parks, monuments, and reservations…by such means and measures as conform to the fundamental purposes of the said parks…which purpose is to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wildlife therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment for future generations” (54 U.S.C. §100101). In addition, the NPS Organic Act allows the NPS, through the Secretary of the Interior, to “make and publish such rules and regulations as he may deem necessary or proper for the use and management of the parks, monuments, and reservations under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service” (54 U.S.C. §100501).

In 1970, Congress amended the NPS Organic Act to clarify its intentions as to the overall mission of the NPS. Through the General Authorities Act of 1970 (54 U.S.C. §100101-101301), Congress brought all areas administered by the NPS into one National Park System and directed the NPS to manage all areas under its administration consistent with the Organic Act of 1916.

In 1978, Congress amended the General Authorities Act of 1970 and reasserted System-wide the high standard of protection defined in the original Organic Act by stating “Congress further reaffirms, declares, and directs that the promotion and regulation of the various areas of the National Park System, as defined by Section 1 of this Title, shall be consistent with and founded in the purpose established by Section 1 of this Title, to the common benefit of all people of the United States.”

54 U.S.C. §100501 defines the National Park System as”…any areas of land and water now or hereafter administered by the Secretary of the Interior through the National Park Service for park, monument, historic, parkway, recreational, or other purposes.”

In addition to the above statutory authority, the Superintendent is guided by established NPS policy as found in the NPS Management Policies (2006). The Superintendent is also guided by more specific policies promulgated by the Director, National Park Service, in the form of Director’s Orders. As stated in the Management Policies, the primary responsibility of the NPS is to protect and preserve our national natural and cultural resources while providing for the enjoyment of these resources by visitor and other users, as long as use does not impair specific park resources or overall visitor experience. The appropriateness of any particular visitor use or recreational experience is resource-based and will vary from park to park; therefore, a use or activity that is appropriate in one park area may not be appropriate in another. The Superintendent is directed to analyze overall park use and determine if any particular use is appropriate. Where conflict arises between use and resource protection, where the Superintendent has a reasonable basis to believe a resource is or would become impaired, than that Superintendent is obliged to place limitations on public use.

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3. Consistency of This Compendium with Applicable Federal Law and Requirements

The Superintendent’s Compendium is not considered a significant rule requiring review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866. In addition, this Compendium will not have a significant economic effect on a number of small entities nor impose a significant cost on any local, state or tribal government or private organization, and therefore does not fall under the requirements of either the Regulatory Flexibility Act or the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.

The actions and requirements described in this Compendium are found to be categorically excluded from further compliance with the procedural requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) in Department of the Interior (DOI) Guidelines 516 DM 6 and as such, an Environmental Assessment will not be prepared.

4. Development of the Requirements of the Superintendent’s Compendium

As outlined above, the NPS has broad authority and responsibility to determine what types of uses and activities are appropriate in any particular National Park System area. The requirements of the Superintendent’s Compendium are developed through an analysis and determination process. The decision criteria used during this process are:

  • Is there use or activity consistent with the NPS Organic Act and NPS policy?
  • Is the use or activity consistent and compatible with the park’s enabling legislation, management objectives, and corresponding management plans?
  • Will the use or activity damage the park’s protected natural and cultural resources and other protected values?
  • Will the use or activity disturb or be in conflict with wildlife, vegetation, and environmental protection actions and values?
  • Will the use or activity conflict with or be incompatible with traditional park uses and activities?
  • Will the use or activity compromise employee or public safety?

5. Applicability of the Compendium

The rules contained in this Compendium apply to all persons entering, using, visiting or otherwise present on Federally-owned lands, including submerged lands, and waters administered by the NPS within the legislative boundaries of the park. This includes all waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, including all navigable waters.

6. Enforcement of Compendium Requirements

NPS Law Enforcement Park Rangers enforce the requirements of the United State Code, 36 CFR, and this Superintendent’s Compendium.

7. Penalties for Not Adhering to the Compendium Requirements

A person who violates any provision of the regulations found in 36 CFR, Parts 1-7, or provisions of this Compendium, is subject to a fine as provided by law (18 U.S.C. 3571) up to $5,000 for individuals and $10,000 for organizations, or by imprisonment not exceeding six months (18 U.S.C. 3559), or both, and shall be adjudged to pay all court costs associated with any court proceedings. You may receive a list of fines associated with any particular provision by contacting the Chief Ranger at the park address found below.

8. Comments on the Compendium

The Compendium is reviewed annually and revised as necessary. The park welcomes comments about its program and activities at any time.

9. Effective Date of the Superintendent Compendium

The Superintendent’s Compendium is effective on the approval date listed on the first page of this document, and remains in effect until revised for a period up to one year.

10. Additional Information

Some of the terms used in this Compendium may have specific meaning defined in 36 CFR 1.4 Definitions.

11. Availability

Copies of the Compendium are available for viewing at Acadia National Park, 33 McFarland Hill Drive, Bar Harbor, Maine. It may also be found online at:

https://www.nps.gov/acad/learn/management/lawsandpolicies.htm


 

B. SUPERINTENDENT’S COMPENDIUM

In accordance with regulations and the delegated authority provided in Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations (“36 CFR”), Chapter 1, Parts 1-7, authorized by Title 54 United States Code §100501, the following regulatory provisions are established for the proper management, protection, government and public use of those portions of Acadia National Park and St. Croix Island International Historic Site under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service. Unless otherwise stated, these regulatory provisions apply in addition to the requirements contained in 36 CFR, Chapter 1, Parts 1-7.

Written determinations, which explain the reasoning behind the Superintendent’s use of discretionary authority, as required by Section 1.5(c), appear in this document identified by italicized print.

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I. 36 CFR §1.5 – VISITING HOURS, PUBLIC USE LIMITS, CLOSURES, AND AREA DESIGNATIONS FOR SPECIFIC USE OR ACTIVITIES

Note: Violations under this section should be cited under §1.5(f).


(a)(1) The following visiting hours, public use limits, and closures are established for Acadia National Park and St. Croix Island International Historic Site:

Hours of Operation

Hours of operation are general closures and do not take into account special use permits signed by the superintendent, registered guests, or park-sponsored events. For the purposes of enforcement, dark is defined as the time between one hour after sunset and one hour before sunrise.

The following areas are closed to motor vehicles at dark:

  • Carroll Homestead
  • Lake Wood
  • Thompson Island Picnic Area


Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse and Parking Lot are closed to all visitors and to motor vehicles at dark.

St. Croix Island International Historic Site is closed to motor vehicles from 6:00 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. and to all visitors at dark.

Determinations: To protect natural and archeological resources at St. Croix Island International Historic Site, the park is closed to motor vehicles when staff is not on site. Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse and Parking Lot, Carroll Homestead, Lake Wood, Thompson Island Picnic Area, and St. Croix Island IHS are closed at dark to deter underage drinking, vandalism and damage to resources, disorderly conduct, and out of bounds camping.

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Parkwide

The public use of ATVs and UTVs is prohibited. However, the loading and unloading of registered ATVs at boat launches to access the Great Ponds for the purposes of ice fishing is permitted.

Note: ATV violations occurring on roadways should be cited under §1.5(f). Violations occurring off roadways should be cited under §1.5(f) and under 36 CFR §4.10(a) or §2.1(a)(1)(ii). Consider alternative state infractions such as Permission Required, Stop and Identify Requirement, ATV Operation on a Public Way (on open roads), Reckless Operating on ATV, etc. All state ATV regulations are located under M.R.S.A. 29A 13157-A.

Note: Although ATVs and UTVs modified with tracks meet the state definition for snowmobiles, ATVs and UTVs modified for winter use do not fall under the 36 CFR definition of a snowmobile. Therefore, and ATV is always an ATV.

Determination: The natural and cultural resource damaged caused by unauthorized use of ATVs has long been established within the park. The closure does not apply to administrative use of ATVs and UTVs.

Launching, landing, or operating an unmanned aircraft (drone) from or on lands and waters administered by the National Park Service within the boundaries of Acadia National Park is prohibited except as approved in writing by the superintendent.

Definition: The term “unmanned aircraft” means a device that is used or intended to be used for flight in the air without the possibility of direct human intervention from within or on the device, and the associated operational elements and components that are required for the pilot or system operator in command to operate or control the device (such as cameras, sensors, communication links). This term includes all types of devices that meet this definition (e.g. model airplanes, quadcopters, drones) that are used for any purpose, including recreation or commerce.

Determination: While park managers understand the benefits of limited use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for research, for administrative use, and to provide for the public’s safety and welfare, public use of UAS and remote controlled model aircraft for recreational purposes is not a compatible use based upon the purpose of the park’s establishment, the protection of scenic values, noise, potential conflicts with wildlife, visitors expectation of privacy, potential conflict among visitor use activities, and intrusion on other visitor’s enjoyment of the park. In cases where UAS use is determined to be less intrusive than alternatives, UAS use will be considered on a case-by-case basis. The application for a Special Use Permit is available at
https://www.nps.gov/acad/planyourvisit/permits.htm

The closure is a necessary, interim measure until the NPS considers how to address this new use on a long-term basis since use could result in unacceptable impacts to park resources, park values, and visitor safety.

The use of e-cigarettes and other Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) is subject to the same restrictions as tobacco smoking.

Determination: This policy applies to both indoor and outdoor areas. Research indicates that vaping aerosols have at least some level of risk for nearby people in areas with limited ventilation and people with compromised health conditions. Available published studies evaluating the potential hazardous effects of the natural and/or synthetic chemicals used in ENDS indicate that potential health effects exist for users and those exposed secondhand.

Traditional Geocaching is prohibited. (See also 36 CFR § 2.22 -- PROPERTY.)

Determination: Due to concerns of unchecked development of traditional geocaches and the resultant development of associated social trails in areas of archeological, scenic, and biological significance, and the concern of geocache placement in unsafe areas, public development of traditional caches is prohibited. However, park-reviewed and -approved EarthCaches, a virtual and educational form of caching, poses an acceptable alternative for the caching community.

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Roads

The following areas are closed to all motorized vehicles:

  • The section of Duck Brook Road between Duck Brook Bridge and West Street Extension

Determination: A collapse of the retaining wall removed a section of the roadway. With no public complaints about the closure and after hearing many comments from bicyclists in support of the closure, park management has decided to keep the road closed to motorized vehicles.

  • Lurvey Spring Road will be closed to motorized vehicles in 2018. It will remain open to pedestrians and bicyclists.

Determination: Due to road damage caused by winter storms and flooding, the road will not be open for motorized vehicles for the 2018 season.


The following areas are closed to recreational vehicles (RVs) and trailers:

  • Cadillac Summit Road
  • Echo Lake Beach Road (Only buses with permits are allowed.)
  • Lurvey Spring Road

The following areas are closed to buses, recreational vehicles (RVs) and trailers:

  • Duck Brook Road
  • Lighthouse Road
  • The dead end portion of Schooner Head Road (a.k.a. Great Head Road)
  • Sand Beach Parking Lots
  • Jordan Pond South Parking Lot
  • Bubble Pond Parking Lot (Excluding Island Explorer buses)
  • Schoodic Head Road
  • The portion of Schoodic Loop Road from the Schoodic Woods Day Use Parking Area to the end of the one-way at Wonsqueak.
  • Arey Cove Road to Schoodic Point. (Excluding traffic specific to the SERC campus. See below.)


Bubble Pond Parking Area is open to cars during the following shoulder seasons:

  • From April 15, or when the Park Loop Road opens, through the day before the Island Explorer bus operation begins (generally in the third week in June)


From the day after Columbus Day through Dec 1, or when the Park Loop Road closes.

Determinations: Because of the narrowness of the Cadillac Summit Road and the lack of large vehicle parking, vehicles with trailers and vehicles too large to fit suitably within regular parking spaces are prohibited on the roadways and the parking areas. Traffic congestion prohibits alternatives such as double or parallel parking.

For the same reasons, the Schoodic Loop Road has the same closures. In addition, the Schoodic Peninsula is managed to provide opportunities for solitude. Limited administrative bus use, however, is permitted for NPS educational programs.

The parking lots at Duck Brook Road and Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse are too small to provide adequate turn around space for large vehicles and vehicles with trailers. Parking spaces are 20 feet long. Traffic congestion prohibits alternatives such as double or parallel parking.

The southern end of Schooner Head Road does not provide adequate turn-around room for vehicles longer than 20 feet. Visitors in recreational vehicles and in buses that are interested in hiking the Great Head Trail may hike from the Schooner Head Overlook Parking Lot to the Great Head Trailhead. The trail may also be accessed by way of Sand Beach, where parking is available along Park Loop Road.

The prohibition of buses in the Lower Sand Beach Parking Lot does not include Island Explorer buses, which have a designated loading zone. In the Lower Sand Beach Parking Lot, school buses may, in accordance with the conditions in their special use permit, be permitted in the lot.

Vehicle size restrictions provide for the safety of pedestrians, cyclists, and motor vehicle operators on the historic, undersized roads at Schoodic. Vehicle limits also provide for a visitor experience commensurate with the Schoodic GMP. The physical capacity of the road and the lack of oversized parking spaces prohibit the use and parking of oversized vehicles.

During the busy summer and early fall seasons, the Island Explorer bus system provides free transportation to visitors with vehicles too large to operate on the Schoodic road system. This closure does not apply to vehicles with special permits, to vehicles traveling directly to and from the Schoodic Education and Research Center, or to the Island Explorer bus shuttle system.

The Bubble Pond Parking Area is closed to vehicles while the Island Explorer is in operation. The closure is in effect because cars routinely blocked the shuttle bus lane when the lot was open to general parking.

Sargeant Drive is closed to buses and to RVs.

Determination: Sargeant Drive (also spelled Sergeant Drive on some maps and signs) is too narrow to accommodate large vehicles on this two-way road. This is a town of Mount Desert regulation on a town-owned road. It is provided here for informational purposes only.

Duck Harbor Brook Road and Western Head Road on Isle au Haut are closed to all unauthorized motor vehicles.

Determinations: The Duck Harbor Brook Road closure ensures the low intensity use described in P.L. 97-335, and a higher degree of solitude and natural quiet appropriate for this remote island unit of Acadia. Both of these roads have dead ends and neither provides adequate space for the public to turn their vehicles around. Both roads are rugged and are not regularly maintained, and neither road is wide enough to permit two-way traffic.

During hours of operation, the parking lot at Thompson Island Chamber of Commerce/Visitor Contact Station is limited to 1 hour parking from the second weekend in May to the Sunday after Columbus Day in October. Overnight parking is prohibited year-round.

Determination: Visitor parking at this first visitor contact station is limited during the peak visitor season.

In accordance with 36 CFR § 5.6, All Park-Owned Roads are closed to commercial vehicles, with the following exceptions:

  • Commercial buses on the Park Loop Road, Cadillac Mountain Road, Paradise Hill Road, and associated parking lots and pull outs
  • Commercial buses traveling directly to and from the SERC for SERC-related activities and events are permitted. Commercial buses are otherwise prohibited on the portion of Schoodic Loop Road from the Schoodic Woods Day Use Parking Area to the end of the one-way at Wonsqueak and on Arey Cove Road to Schoodic Point.
  • Concession-operated vehicles used to transport passengers, merchandise, equipment, and food
  • Commercial vehicles making deliveries to the park and concessions
  • Park-contracted commercial vehicles operating within the scope of their work agreement
  • Partner service and authorized vendor vehicles
  • Commercial Use Authorization holders conducting authorized business
Determination: Park roads are not rated nor suited for heavy and large equipment. Commercial vehicles may detract from the natural scenery and contribute to noise and air pollution. There are no parking areas available to commercial buses in the Schoodic area except on the SERC campus.

Hio Fire Road and Marshall Brook Fire Road are closed to motor vehicles except snowmobiles.

Determination: These roads are closed to provide for alternative recreational opportunities, such as bird watching, bicycling, cross country skiing, dog walking, and snowshoeing without the negative impacts associated with motorized vehicle use. The Hio Fire Road provides for emergency egress for campers in event of roadway flooding of 102A.

The following seasonal road and parking lot closures are based upon weather conditions, available funding, and available personnel:

Opening Date

Closing Date

Blackwoods Campground Road April 1 December 1
Beech Mountain Road Parking Area April 15 December 1
Cadillac Summit Road April 15 December 1
Great Meadow Drive (park-owned section
of Ledgelawn Avenue Extension)
April 15 December 1
Kebo Street (park-owned section only) April 15 December 1
Paradise Hill Road April 15 December 1
Park Loop Road (excluding the section between the entrance station
at Schooner Head Road and the intersection with Otter Cliff Road
at Fabbri Picnic Area, which is open year round except as noted below.)
April 15 December 1
Southern end of Schooner Head Road
(Great Head Road)
April 15 December 1
Stanley Brook Road April 15 December 1
West Street Extension (park-owned section only) April 15 December 1
St. Croix Island International Historic Site Entrance Road April 15 Veterans Day
weekend
All Gravel Roads May 15 November 15
Seawall Campground Road Wednesday before
Memorial Weekend
September 6
Carroll Farm Road May 15 November 1
Echo Lake Beach Road April 15 December 1
Lake Wood Road June 1 October 15
Thompson Island Parking Areas May 15 December 1
Wildwood Stables Parking Area May 26 December 1


Notes: Park roads may not be open on the dates shown if snow, ice or other weather variables create unsafe travel conditions for motor vehicles or where travel results in excessive damage to road surfaces in the case of gravel roads. The superintendent authorizes emergency closures to roadways as needed to provide for the safety and welfare of the visiting public and to allow for construction.

Cadillac Mountain Road, Paradise Hill Road, Park Loop Road, Duck Brook Road, Stanley Brook Road, Seawall Campground, and the park-owned sections of Great Meadow Drive, Kebo Street, and West Street Extension are open to snowmobile use during the closure periods (ref. 36 CFR §7.56).

Determinations: Roads are closed to vehicle use on the dates shown due to the increased probability of ice, snow, rock falls and downed trees. During periods of ice, snow, emergency or other hazardous conditions including inclement weather, road construction, maintenance or other cause, park roads may be closed to insure public safety and resource protection. Gravel roads are closed in the spring until the roads dry and harden enough to support vehicle traffic. They are closed in the fall to deter roadside poaching and to open routes for snowmobile use.


The summit to Cadillac Mountain is closed to public vehicle traffic during the Cadillac Star Party (in September).

Determinations: The Cadillac Summit Road is closed at sunset to permit time for astronomers to set up telescopes in preparation for the annual Cadillac Star Party. Visitors with disabilities are permitted on the summit with their placarded private vehicles along with event shuttle buses.

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Roadside Parking

Parking is limited to:

  • Parking lots and paved and established gravel pull-outs

  • The right lane of the one-way section of Park Loop Road from Bear Brook Picnic Area to the Stanley Brook Road junction, unless otherwise posted.

Determination: Managing vehicle parking is a challenge at Acadia National Park. In an effort to reduce roadside resource damage from cars parked off road, and to reduce visual obtrusions created by developing additional parking facilities, park management has offered this portion of the one-way Park Loop Road to parked vehicles.

Whenever any vehicle has been left unattended in violation of an existing traffic control device or parked in such a manner as to obstruct traffic, compromise public safety, or damage park resources, the registered owner or vehicle renter shall be subject to the penalty for such violations.


Determination: Due to limited availability of parking, the unpredictable and ubiquitous presence of pedestrian and bicycle traffic, and the close proximity of natural and cultural resources along park roadways, this restriction is required to allow management to hold vehicle owners, lessees, or renters accountable for their actions or the actions of those they have allowed to operate their vehicle.

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Carriage Roads

Temporary closures of Carriage Roads will be in effect from June 1- August 31, 2018.

Determination: Bridge masonry repairs will be occurring throughout the closure period.

Carriage roads are closed to all forms of use during seasonal thaw periods.

Determination: Administrative closures are posted on site and announced to the public in area newspapers. The superintendent may close all carriage roads or select sections of carriage roads while the surfaces remain soft and muddy during the thaw periods. Significant resource damage to the historic roads occurs when they are subjected to uncontrolled visitor use at this time. Not all roads heave and thaw at the same time, so closures may affect only portions of the carriage roads.

Carriage roads are closed to all motor vehicles except the specific sections noted in 36 CFR §7.56 which allow limited snowmobile travel.

Note: This closure applies to modes of transportation with internal combustion engines and to electric vehicles such as Segways®, eBikes®, and hoverboards.


The use of eBikes and Segways® and similar gyroscopically controlled devices are considered to be motor vehicles as defined by 36 CFR and are, therefore, prohibited on carriage roads.

Determination: The 36 CFR definition of a bicycle is: “every device propelled solely by human power upon which a person or persons may ride on land having one, two, or more wheels, except a manual wheelchair.”

The carriage roads have been specifically identified as locations where visitors can enjoy a motor-less park experience. These provisions protect the park’s natural, cultural, scenic, and aesthetic values, while contributing to minimal disturbance to wildlife or park resources. Acadia NP complies with ADA guidelines for transportation of disabled visitors.


Carriage roads are closed to horse use between intersections 1- 8, except between junctions 7 and 8. The closure includes Witch Hole Pond Loop, the Paradise Hill Loop, and the Eagle Lake Loop (except for the area between intersections 7 and 8), and the carriage road access trail from the Visitor Center to intersection 1.

Determination: Closure of these sections of carriage roads to horses reflects historic management and will remain in effect pending reconsideration in a public planning process. Issues include potential visitor conflicts between user groups, increased maintenance costs, and safe parking and access.

When carriage roads are groomed for skiing, bicycle use on snow-covered carriage roads is prohibited.

Determination: Trenching caused by bicycle tracks damages groomed surfaces. The potential for recreational conflicts between winter bicyclists and the cross country skiing community is too great to permit mixed use of the resource. Fat bikes may be used on ungroomed carriage roads, on the Western Mountain Roads, and on all paved roads.

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Picnic Areas

Opening Date Closing Date
Thompson Island Picnic Area May 15 November 15
Bear Brook Picnic Area May 15 October 15
Pretty Marsh Picnic Area June 1 October 15

Determination: Picnic areas are closed to vehicles during the off-season due to low visitor demand and to limited staffing levels that do not allow for trash collection and cleaning of restrooms. Buildings are closed for the winter because of freeze damage and the expense associated with winter operations.
 

Campgrounds

Opening Date

Closing Date

Blackwoods Campground, Individual Sites

Open Year Round
(See notes below)

Blackwoods Campground, Group Sites

May 15

October 15

Seawall Campground, Individual and Group Sites

Wednesday before
Memorial Day

October 1

Schoodic Woods Campground, All Sites

Wednesday before
Memorial Day

Day after
Columbus Day

Duck Harbor Campground, Isle au Haut

May 15

October 15


Notes: Although Blackwoods Campground is open year-round, limited amenities and campsites are available during the shoulder and winter season, from November 1 through April 30.

December 1 through March 31: Primitive hike-in camping is free but requires a camping permit available at the Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce (2 Cottage Street) or at the dispatch center at park headquarters. The campground entrance road is closed to automobiles. Campers parked at the campground entrance must not block the closed gate and are required to hike in from the campground entrance. Vault toilets and hand-pumped water are available during the off-season.

From April 1 through April 30 and from November 1 through November 30: Fees are half price. Self-registration is required on site. Flush toilets are open during the shoulder seasons.

Determination: Seawall and Duck Harbor Campground facilities are closed to campers during the off-season due to significantly decreased visitor demand, and limited staffing levels that do not allow for trash collection and cleaning of restrooms. Buildings are closed for the winter because of potential for freeze damage and the expense associated with winter operations. The park cannot incur the expenses needed to keep all campground facilities open year-round
.

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Attractions and Facilities:


Jordan Pond House Tea Lawn is closed through June 20, 2018.

Determination: The contract to improve drainage and contour the tea lawn to redirect water away from the building will be completed by June 20, 2018.
Opening Date Closing Date
Hulls Cove Visitor Center May 1 October
Sieur de Monts Nature Center May 1 September 6

Determination: These sites are closed in the off-season to vehicle access due to significantly decreased visitor demand, staffing limitations, no trash collection, and no cleaning staff. Buildings are closed for the winter because of the potential for freeze damage and due to operational costs associated with winter use.

Wildwood Stables operation period has been extended to accommodate horseback riders further into the year.

In accordance with U.S. Coast Guard and state requirements, PFDs must be worn or carried on vessels located within all bodies of water in the park. (See also 36 CFR §3.7 PERSONAL FLOATATION DEVICE (PFD) REQUIREMENTS.)

Surfing at Sand Beach is permitted from September 9 through June 14.

Determination: Per 36 CFR §3.22 Surf Boards and similar devices are prohibited during periods that Sand Beach is a designated swim beach. Sand Beach is a designated swim beach from June 15 to September 8.


The Sand Beach Sand Dunes are closed to the public.

Determination: The Sand Beach Sand Dunes are associated dune grasses are a unique and sensitive park resource that are easily impacted by human foot traffic.


The Cadillac Repeater Tower Site enclosure is closed to the public.

Determination: The Cadillac towers support radio transmissions for a host of all-risk agencies that serve MDI and the region. Damage to the infrastructure would be costly to repair and could impact timely responses to life threatening situations.


The park firing range, located off Route 3, is closed to the public. The closure encompasses the area 100 yards north and south from the center of the target line, and the area 125 yards west from the Boyd Pit Road.

Determination: The firing range and environs are closed to the public for reasons of public safety. The closure is marked by signs.

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Mount Desert Island Trails and Environs:


All trails in Acadia are closed to vehicles and forms of conveyance that do not serve to assist those with an accessibility need.

Determination: Due to narrow trail widths, and uneven surfaces, and steep topography, overall safety considerations preclude the use of most motorized assistance. Motorized and non-motorized wheelchairs are recommended on portions of the Cadillac Summit Loop, the Ship Harbor Trail, Jessup Path and Hemlock Road, Ocean Path, Jordan Pond Trail, and Schooner Head Trail.

Annual trail closures due to wildlife:

Location of closure

Date of Closure

Precipice Wall: The area encompassed by Park Loop Road, Orange & Black Path, Champlain North Ridge Trail, and the southern boundary noted as the east/west line from 75 feet south of the Precipice Parking Lot on the Park Loop Road (at the Murphy Lane) west to the Bear Brook Trail is closed to public use.

The Precipice Trails and a portion of the Champlain / Orange & Black Path are included in this closure. Champlain North Ridge Trail is open to visitor use year-round.

March 15 – August 15
[Or opened earlier if falcons are not nesting on the cliff, as determined by the park wildlife biologist]

Valley Cove Wall: The area encompassed by Valley Peak Trail, Flying Mountain Trail, and Valley Cove Trail is closed to public use.

The Valley Cove Trail, located between the Flying Mountain Trail and the Man O’ War Brook Trail, is included in this closure. All other perimeter trails, including Valley Peak Trail, and roads in the vicinity are open year round to visitor use.

March 15 – August 15
[Or opened earlier if falcons are not nesting on the cliff, as determined by the park wildlife biologist]

Jordan Cliffs: The area encompassed by Penobscot Mountain Trail, Penobscot East Trail, the carriage road on the west side of Jordan Pond, and the carriage road from Intersection 14 to Penobscot Mountain Trail is closed to the public. A line east of the Penobscot East Trail and Jordan Cliffs trail intersection marks the northern boundary of the closure.

The Jordan Cliffs Trail is included in this closure. The perimeter trails and carriage roads are open to public use year round.

March 15 – August 15

[Or opened earlier if falcons are not nesting on the cliff, as determined by the park wildlife biologist]

Beech Cliffs: The area encompassed by Beech Cliffs Trail, the east side of the northern-most section of Beech Cliff Loop Trail, south of an unmarked line that runs due east from the north-most point of the Beech Cliff Loop Trail, and 50 feet west of the shore of Echo Lake to the terminus of the Beech Cliffs Trail near Echo Lake Beach is closed to public use.
The trails themselves are open year round to visitor use.

March 15 – August 15

[Or opened earlier if falcons are not nesting on the cliff, as determined by the park wildlife biologist]

 
Map of Precipice Closure
Map of Precipice closure
 
Map of Valley Cove closure
Map of Valley Cove closure
 
Map of Jordan Cliffs closure
Map of Jordan Cliffs closure
 
Map of Beech Cliffs closure
Map of Beech Cliffs closure
 

Determinations: The Hunters Brook Trail is closed due to heavy construction occurring on the carriage road between intersections 16 and 17.

These cliffs and surrounding areas are used by peregrine falcons, a state-listed endangered species. The cliffs are used for nesting and rearing the young fledglings. Peregrine falcons are very sensitive to human disturbance near the nest site.

Determination/Note: The following closure dates are in accordance with established state wildlife management agency regulations (ME Inland Fisheries and Wildlife 2012).

 

Mount Desert Island / Acadia National Park Streams:

Location of Closure

Date of Closure

All freshwater streams on MDI are closed to fishing

October 1 – March 31

Lurvey Spring Brook: Lurvey Spring Brook, a tributary to Echo Lake with origins from the flanks of Beech Mountain and Valley Peak, is closed to open-water angling. The brook is not open to winter angling or to ice fishing. The fisheries of Lurvey Spring Brook are long-term research reference stream by ME Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.

Year-round

Upper Hadlock Brook: Upper Hadlock Brook, a tributary to Upper Hadlock Pond, is closed to open-water angling. The brook is not open to winter angling or to ice fishing. The fisheries of Upper Hadlock Brook are closed to protect native fishes that use the brook for spawning and rearing their young.

Year-round


Determination: The above stream closure dates are in accordance with established state wildlife management agency regulations (ME Inland Fisheries and Wildlife 2017).

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St. Croix Island International Historic Site:


Commercial use is prohibited on the St. Croix Island portion of St. Croix Island International Historic Site.

Note: Boats cannot depart Canadian shores and proceed directly to St. Croix Island without first clearing U.S. Customs at the nearest port of entry (Calais, Robbinston, Eastport, Cutler, Lubeck, or Jonesport). There are no exceptions to these reporting requirements.

Determination: St. Croix Island is a fragile, highly-erodable cultural site. Additional uses caused by commercial operations could threaten the sensitive archeological and natural resources.

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Islands:


Park Land on Bear Island (near Northeast Harbor) is closed to public access.

Determination: Two acres on Bear Island are closed to the public because the lighthouse is administered under a historic lease that prohibits public access. The remainder of the island is privately owned. In addition, Bear Island is an established eagle nesting territory.

Commercial activities on Isle au Haut are prohibited

Determination: This prohibition is in accordance with the Commercial Services Plan (4/2000).

The following seasonal island closures are in effect:

Location of Closure

Date of Closure

Determinations

Bar Island (Somes Sound)

February 15 – August 31
(Or opened once it is determined that nesting is not occurring on the island, as determined by the park wildlife biologist)

Bar Island in Somes Sound has long been an established bald eagle nesting territory. This island is identified in the Protected Area Management Subzone of the Acadia National Park General Management Plan (GMP). The GMP states that this subzone merits the highest protection and should be managed for minimal or no human intrusion.

Heron Island

April 1 – July 31

The island is a documented nesting seabird island. Seabirds are easily flushed from the nest or island by human activities above the high tide level, exposing eggs to predators and weather. Seabird nests hidden in grass or on rocks are well camouflaged and easily stepped on, crushing chicks or eggs. Chicks flushed from the nest may die. This island is identified in the Protected Area Management Subzone of the Acadia National Park General Management Plan (GMP). The GMP states that this subzone merits the highest protection and should be managed for minimal or no human intrusion.

Rolling Island

February 15 –
August 31

(Or opened once it is determined that nesting is not occurring on the island, as determined by the park wildlife biologist)

Rolling Island became a bald eagle nesting territory in 2000. This island is identified in the Protected Area Management Subzone of the Schoodic General Management Plan / Environmental Impact Statement. The GMP states that this subzone merits the highest protection and should be managed for minimal or no human intrusion.

Rum Island
(Long Pond)

March 15 –
August 15

(Or opened once it is determined that nesting is not occurring on the island, as determined by the park wildlife biologist)

Rum Island is a newly established loon nesting area. This island is identified in the Protected Natural Area Subzone of the Acadia National Park General Management Plan (GMP). The GMP mandates that these areas are set aside for strict protection because of unusual fragility or ecological significance and will be managed for little or no human intrusion.

Schoodic Island

February 15 –
August 31

(Or opened once it is determined that nesting is not occurring on the island, as determined by the park wildlife biologist)

Schoodic Island is a documented nesting seabird island, which recently was reported to have the largest nesting population of eiders (est. 3000 pairs) and nesting petrels in Maine. Seabirds are easily flushed from the nest by human activities above the high tide level, exposing eggs to predators and weather. Seabird nests hidden in grass or on rocks are well camouflaged and easily stepped on, crushing chicks or eggs. Chicks flushed from the nest may die. This island is identified in the Protected Area Management Subzone of the Schoodic General Management Plan / Environmental Impact Statement. The draft GMP states that this subzone merits the highest protection and should be managed for minimal or no human intrusion. Schoodic Island has long been an established bald eagle nesting territory

Thrumcap Island

April 1 – July 31
(Or opened once it is determined that nesting is not occurring on the island, as determined by the park wildlife biologist)

The island is used for nesting gulls and cormorants. Seabirds are easily flushed from the nest or island by human activities that expose eggs to predators and weather. This island is identified in the Protected Area Management Subzone of the Acadia National Park General Management Plan (GMP). The GMP states that this subzone merits the highest protection and should be managed for minimal or no human intrusion.


Determination: The following closure dates are in accordance with established federal and state wildlife management agency recommendations.

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Specific Uses:


(a)(2) The following areas have been designated for a specific use or activity, under the conditions and/or restrictions as noted:

Camping Areas

  • Blackwoods Campground
  • Seawall Campground
  • Schoodic Woods Campground
  • Duck Harbor Campground, Isle au Haut
  • Long Island Easement
  • (Please refer to §2.10 for detailed camping area designations and restrictions.)

Boat Launching Sites

  • Eagle Lake Boat Launch
  • Ikes Point Boat Launch on Echo Lake
  • Jordan Pond Boat Launch
  • Long Pond Boat Launch (south end at pump station)
  • Red Beach Boat Launch, St. Croix Island IHS
  • Seal Cove Boat Launch (unimproved)

Docking or Mooring Areas

  • Frazer Point dock on Schoodic Peninsula is open to public, non-commercial use for day use only. There are no launching facilities at this location.
  • Duck Harbor float on Isle au Haut is open to the public for dingy use only on the south (campground) side. The north side of the float (furthest from the campground) is available for use by the NPS and the authorized ferry service from Stonington only. There are no launching facilities at this location.

Federal Buildings

  • Closed circuit television systems (CCTVs) are in use at Acadia National Park within and around federal buildings to provide for the protection of employees and property.

    In accordance with National Park Service Law Enforcement Reference Manual 9 (RM-9), notice is hereby given that Acadia National Park uses Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) security camera monitoring.

    The park’s use of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) for law enforcement and security purposes will only be to visually monitor public park areas and public activities where no constitutionally protected reasonable expectation of privacy exists. Such CCTV use, which will have adequate privacy and First Amendment safeguards, will be to help ensure public safety and security; facilitate the detection, investigation, prevention, and deterrence of terrorist attack and crime; help ensure the safety of citizens and officers; help assist in the proper allocation and deployment of law enforcement and public safety resources; and help facilitate the protection of the innocent and the apprehension and prosecution of criminals. (RM-9, 26.1)

    This policy does not restrict the official use of CCTV in government administrative areas, including administrative buildings, jail holding facilities (RM-9, 26.3.7), revenue collection sites, etc., where the government may record/monitor its facilities. For example, the government may perform unrestricted video/audio recording at revenue collection points (entrance stations, visitor center counters, etc.). This policy does not restrict the use of an Audio/Visual Recording Device (AVRD) in patrol vehicles or officer-worn recording devices used by commissioned rangers. (RM-9, 26.1).

    Operation of CCTV cameras, maintenance of recorded images and use of recorded images will be in accordance with NPS and Department policy and applicable laws and regulations. (RM-9, 26.1-26.4) No person will be targeted or monitored merely because of race, religion, gender, sex, disability, national origin, or political affiliation or views. (RM-9, 26.4.2)

    Nothing in this policy statement is intended to create any rights, privileges, or benefits not otherwise recognized by law.

Motor Boating Areas

  • Please refer to §3.6 for detailed boating restrictions

Picnic Areas

  • Bear Brook Picnic Area
  • Fabbri Picnic Area
  • Frazer Point Picnic Area
  • Pretty Marsh Picnic Area
  • Red Beach Picnic Area, St. Croix Island IHS
  • Seawall Picnic Area
  • Thompson Island Picnic Area

Public Assembly and Meeting Areas

  • Please refer to §1.6 for detailed permit requirements.
  • Please refer to §2.51 for detailed area descriptions.

Snowmobiling Areas

  • Please refer to §2.18 and §7.56 for detailed snowmobile area designations and use restrictions. Note that §§ 4.4, 4.12, 4.13, 4.14, 4.20, 4.21, 4.22, and 4.23 also apply to snowmobiles.

Surfing Area

  • Sand Beach, from September 9 through June 14

Swimming Beaches/Areas

  • Sand Beach, from June 15 through September 8
  • Echo Lake Beach, from May 15 through September 15

Rock Climbing Areas

Please note the following restrictions related to rock climbing:
  • Creating new routes by installing fixed protection (including pitons), and/or cleaning routes of vegetation and soils will be permitted only with the prior written approval of the superintendent and only at these climbing areas: the Precipice Wall, the South Wall of Champlain Mountain, Jordan Cliffs, Beech Cliffs, Canada Cliffs, Great Head, Dorr Mountain (pinnacle), Enoch Mountain (upper area), and Mansell Mountain. Route development using fixed protection (including pitons) and route cleaning is prohibited at all other areas of the park.
  • All organized climbing groups are limited to a maximum group size of twelve persons, including guides, and are subject to business activity regulations, 36 CFR §5.3.
  • Reservations for climbing are required at Otter Cliffs for organized groups of six people or more from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day.
  • Climbing and bouldering is prohibited on all park bridges to protect cultural resources.

Determinations: The rules listed above were implemented with the adoption of the park’s Climbing Management Plan, approved in 1997. Most of the better climbing routes in the park have already been developed with fixed protection and cleaned routes. The goal is to protect park resources by managing climbing, especially on new areas. Reservations are required at Otter Cliffs to prevent multiple groups from arriving on the same day, impacting resources and visitor experiences. Groups larger than 12 can have an impact on resources and the quality of visitor experiences. All carriage road and Park Loop Road bridges are cultural resources and are either listed or nominated in the National Register of Historic Places.

The following restrictions and/or conditions are in effect for the specific uses or activities noted:

Passenger Carrying Buses (Excluding the Island Explorer Bus System)

  • Engines must be shut off when not underway.

Determination: The idling of bus engines adds unnecessary exhaust fumes to the air and diminishes the enjoyment by visitors of the peace and tranquility of the park. Due to the nature of the service provided by the natural gas-powered shuttle buses, they are excluded from the requirement.

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Last updated: May 5, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 177
Bar Harbor, ME 04609

Phone:

(207) 288-3338

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