Summary: Cross Route 3 to begin climbing steep granite staircase with severe ledges. Trail opens up to Huguenot Head a glacially carved summit with views of the tarn. Continue climbing a steep granite slope to the summit of Champlain Mountain, a mountain with stunning views of Frenchman Bay and Downeast Maine. Descend down the South Ridge Trail, a granite ridgeline, to the Bowl, a glacially carved pond between two mountains. From the Bowl, take the forested Bowl Trail to Sand Beach.
Terrain: steep staircases, rocky granite slopes and ridgelines, forested path.
Trailhead: From Sieur de Monts Springs and The Tarn, cross Maine 3 going south. Limited parking in the summer months from 9 am - 3 pm. Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Nearby Communities: Bar Harbor, Otter Creek, Blackwoods Campground
Restrooms: Sieur de Monts (seasonal), Sand Beach (year round)
Summary: Begin on a gradual forested ascent through a gulley. Ascend the south side of the Beehive using granite staircases, boulders, and iron rungs. Final granite slope leads to the summit. Offers views of Frenchman Bay, Sand Beach and the bold coast of Maine. Continue past the summit and descend rocky trails to a glacially carved pond called the Bowl. Descend along a forest path back to where you began your climb and return to Sand Beach. An exposed, iron rung climb not recommended for small children, for people with a fear of heights, or for anyone in wet weather. Good traction shoes are advised.
Terrain: Loose rock, forest path, staircases, exposed ledges, iron rungs, granite slopes
Trailhead: Park Loop Road Sand Beach parking area. Limited parking in the summer months from 9 am - 3 pm. Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Nearby Communities: Bar Harbor, Otter Creek, Blackwoods Campground
Summary: Ascend a forested path to a unique meadowlike area before continuing your climb on an exposed granite ridgeline with spectacular views as you approach the summit of Cadillac Mountain. Return the way you came.
Terrain: Forested path, granite ridgeline, one iron rung
Trailhead: Maine 3, 100 feet south of Blackwoods Campground entrance. Limited parking in the summer months from 9 am - 3 pm. Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Nearby Communities: Otter Cove, Blackwoods Campground, Seal Harbor
Summary: Beginning on a forested path, follow the the Kane Path on a rocky trail and follow the Canon Brook up to the steep southern ridgeline of Dorr Mountain. Enjoy ocean views on top of Dorr as well as views of Cadillac Mountain. Continue past the summit down a scree field to the A. Murray Young which begins with hiking major boulders. The trail continues downward on a forested path paralleling a stream before returning on to the Canon Brook Trail. Caution: Stay left on the Canon Brook trail in order to return to the Kane path and the parking area near the Tarn.
Summary: The trail begins on a private land easement. Please remain on the trail to protect the beautiful mossy forest through which the you gradually ascend. Continue across the carriage road, where the trail will begin climbing through a rock field. Be prepared for a combination of water, granite slabs, and boulders as you carefully make your way to the summit. This hike climbs steeply to the northwest side of Sargent Mountain summit. The peak offers stunning 360-degree views from the second highest summit in Acadia. Descend a steep rocky slope into a ravine and again ascend to the summit of Gilmore Peak. Continue past this summit and follow the trail to Parkman Mountain. Take Parkman Mountain Trail north and descend from the summit to return to Giant Slide Trail and the parking area.
Terrain: Forested trail, rocky granite slopes, rock slide and boulder fields, granite exposed summits.
Trailhead: Maine 3, Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Summary: Begins with an easy stroll along a forested path. Then ascend Penobscot Mountain on a granite, forested ridgeline. Soon after, the ridgeline becomes exposed offering views of the southern end of Acadia National Park and Mount Desert Island. Once you reach the summit, continue north along the same trail as it descends into the forest valley between Penobscot and Sargent. Continue past the pond and ascend the south side of Sargent Mountain to the summit. The summit offers stunning panoramic views. Retrace your steps back past the Penobscot Mountain junction and continue down the forested ridgeline.
Terrain: Forested paths, granite ridgelines
Trailhead: Jordan Pond House, Just South of Carriage Road Sign 15. Limited parking in the summer months from 9 am - 3 pm. Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Nearby Communities: Seal Harbor, Blackwoods Campground, Northeast Harbor, Otter Creek Restrooms: Jordan Pond House (seasonal)
Summary: Walk along the Jordan Pond with views of South Bubble Mountain until turning onto Jordan Pond Carry. From Bubble Rock parking lot, cross the road and ascend Pemetic Mountain using the Northwest Ridge of Pemetic Mountain. This trail follows a ravine with steep rocky granite trails. Several metal rungs lead you to the summit of Pemetic Mountain where Jordan Pond, Penobscot Mountain and Sargent Mountain can all be seen. Follow the South Ridge of Pemetic Trail down and take the junction at the Bubble and Jordan Pond Path. Cross the road to return to Jordan Pond.
Terrain: Flat forested lake side trail, steep granite ledges and rocky trails, granite ridgelines, rooted forest trails.
Trailhead: Jordan Pond north lot. Limited parking in the summer months from 9 am - 3 pm. Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Nearby Communities: Seal Harbor, Northeast Harbor
Restrooms: Jordan Pond north lot (year round), Jordan Pond House (seasonal).
IRON RUNGS and LADDERS DOGS NOT PERMITTED Rising over 1,000 feet in 0.9 miles, this climb requires physical and mental strength. It is a rugged, non-technical climb with open cliff faces and iron rungs. It is not recommended for small children, for people with a fear of heights, or for anyone in wet weather.
Distance: 3.2 miles
Summary: Begin bouldering through a rock field as you approach the Precipice cliff. Ascend granite stairs, ladders, and iron rungs as you make your make up the sheer cliff. Finish by reaching the summit along granite slopes. Stunning views await you at the top of Champlain Mountain. Descend down the North Ridge Trail of Champlain Mountain along a granite ridgeline. Climb down a steep, rocky trail towards the Park Loop Road. You can walk the road back to the parking area, but to continue on trails, cross the park loop road where it intersects with Schooner Head Path. Take this easy forest path to Murphy Lane which will then place you just south of the Precipice parking area.
Terrain: Boulders, Granite stairs and slopes, iron rungs, sheer cliffs, rocky trails.
Trailhead: Precipice trailhead, Limited parking in the summer months from 9 am - 3 pm. Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Summary: Begin climbing forested and rocky trails to the summit of St. Sauveur Mountain. Continue past the summit where stunning views of Somes Sound and Valley Cove await. Continue your descent towards Somes Sound on a steep, forest path. Be aware that there are many slippery granite surfaces on this descent and it is not recommended in wet conditions. A short out and back can take you to the edge of Somes Sound. A steep ascent up a rocky trail to the south side of Acadia Mountain will bring you to a pseudosummit on this peak. This summit offers spectacular views of Somes Sound and the north side of the island. Continue along the forested ridgeline to the second summit of Acadia Mountain. Begin a steep descent back towards the beginning of the St. Sauveur trail and the parking area.
Terrain: Steep granite slopes and ridgelines, forested trails
Trailhead: Acadia Mountain parking area or St. Sauveur parking area. Limited parking in the summer months from 9 am - 3 pm. Take the fare-free Island Explorer Shuttle.
Nearby Communities: Somesville, Southwest Harbor
Restrooms: Acadia Mountain parking area (seasonal).
Anthony J. Bopp and Francheska Miranda, of Mahopac, NY, share this video clip from their Nov 4 trek of the Precipice Trail.
Park rangers encourage visitors to view this footage as a timely, cautionary reminder to take care on challenging trails as seasons and weather conditions change. Be prepared for early darkness. Ice grippers, cleats, and traction footwear can have little effect on slick, underlying granite surfaces. Trekking poles are highly encouraged. As winter approaches, please consider exploring Ship Harbor, Ocean Path, and available carriage roads.