Last updated: July 19, 2023
The Compass Harbor Trail provides an easy walk through the woods to the shore just outside the village of Bar Harbor. The land is the former estate of George B. Dorr, who was instrumental in the creation of Acadia National Park as well as its first superintendent. Explore the historic site and enjoy a dramatic shoreline with views of Frenchman Bay and Ironbound Island.
- Distance: 0.8 miles round trip
- Terrain: Forested path, rocky coastline
- Start at the Compass Harbor Trailhead and travel 0.1 miles from the parking area before the first junction.
- Turn left at the junction and follow as the trail circles around to a dramatic shoreline over looking Frenchman Bay and Ironbound Island.
- From the shore, the trail continues back into the woods to the remains of the former home and grounds of the Dorr estate, including the cottage's foundation, stone steps leading down to the ocean, remnants of a saltwater pool, and the remains of gardens and apple trees.
- Go 0.1 past the foundation to loop back to the first junction.
- Continue 0.1 miles back the trailhead.
The Trailhead: Where to Begin
Compass Harbor Trailhead
Getting to the Trailhead
By car: Start from Hulls Cove Visitor Center. At the four-way intersection, turn left. Turn right at the stop sign onto Maine Route 3. Continue south, then turn left onto Cottage Street. Proceed straight and turn right onto Main St (Maine Route 3). Head south for 1 mile to reach a small dirt parking lot on the left.
By bus: There is no public transportation to this trailhead.
There is no accessible restroom at the trailhead.
Trail Safety Tips
- Check trail elevation profile before hiking.
- Reduce the chance of picking up ticks by staying in the center of the trail, and not stepping on soils and away from brush.
- Always do a tick check after visiting the park.
- Closed-toe, good traction shoes recommended because most trail surfaces are very unlevel.
- Be careful when walking along rocks on the coast. They can be slippery when wet.
- Help protect the fragile environment surrounding the historic site and stay on the designated trail.