Climbing Regulations

Daily Use Logs
Please sign daily use logs at Otter Cliff, Canada Cliffs, and the South Wall. Daily use logs help monitor annual climbing use and ensure climbers know regulations and guidelines.

New Route Development
New routes and fixed protection are strictly managed. New route development is defined as installing fixed protection (including piton use) or cleaning routes (route cleaning is the systematic and comprehensive removal of soils and vegetation from climbing routes). It is permitted only with the prior approval of the superintendent and only at the Precipice Wall, South Wall of Champlain, Jordan Cliffs, Beech Cliffs, Canada Cliffs, Great Head, Dorr Mountain (pinnacle), Enoch Mountain (upper area), and Mansell Mountain.

The climbing advisory group reviews new route development proposals and makes recommendations to the superintendent. If approved, climbers will be issued a permit that covers fixed protection, route cleaning, and the use of a power drill. The advisory group also reviews proposals for the replacement or removal of fixed protection.

New routes without fixed protection or route cleaning may be established freely. Effects of these new routes should be similar to those of a cross country hiker: no blazing or clearing of a trail, and largely incidental (not deliberate) effects from passing through. Removal of soils or vegetation from these new routes should be minimal.

A maximum size of 12 persons, including guides, applies throughout the park to all organized climbing groups. Groups of friends are not considered organized groups. Groups must make reservations for Otter Cliff from Saturday of Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day. Two groups per day may reserve Otter Cliff. Organized groups of five persons or less do not need reservations. Group leaders should approach other climbers about sharing routes. For more information, visit Group Climbing or call 207-288-8791.

Commercial Use
Anyone offering instruction or guiding services in the park for a fee must obtain a business permit (36 CFR 5.3). Call 207-288-8705 for information.

Climbing and bouldering are prohibited on all park bridges. (36 CFR 2.1 a 5)

Dogs are prohibited at climbing areas to the extent that they may not be tethered or allowed to run loose while their owner is climbing (36 CFR 2.15 a). Dogs must be leashed and attended at all times. Dogs can harass wildlife, disturb other visitors, damage vegetation, and accelerate erosion by digging. Consider leaving your dog at home.

Respect peregrine falcon closures. The Precipice Wall, Jordan Cliffs, and Beech Cliffs are usually closed to protect nesting peregrine falcons between early April and mid-August. Exact dates will vary annually (36 CFR 1.5).

Fixed Anchors at Otter Cliff
Climbers must use existing fixed anchors for climbs at the north end of the cliff near the route "A Dare."

Please follow Leave No Trace guidelines when climbing.

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 177
Bar Harbor, ME 04609


(207) 288-3338
General information and questions. The phone is answered weekdays 8 am - 4:30 pm.

Contact Us