Hiking Acadia National Park
by Dolores Kong & Dan Ring (Falcon Guides)
© 2016 Dolores Kong & Dan Ring/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Great hike. Took about 5 hours round trip with a 30 min stop at the top. Views were excellent.We did not hear or see any cars until we were just about at the top.
First time to hike on my own so I cheated a bit and started at the summit and worked my way down the South Ridge Trail to Blackwoods campground. Starting at the top the entire trail provides spectacular views of ocean and granite. Found the trail to be well marked and easy to navigate. Gained a new appreciation for Cadillac Mountain's girth and presence on the island. I have a difficult time with direction (more than difficult if you ask my husband) yet during this hike something clicked and I was able to visualize the entire park in relation to Cadillac Mountain which was a high point for me. Next trip I'm planning to take the North Ridge up and descend again down the South Ridge. Beautifully maintained...
The length of this trail makes it a bit more challenging than the modest elevation gain would suggest. With time spent enjoying the scenery and having lunch, this hike can take up a good portion of a day. My wife and I are in our mid 50s and it took us about five hours round trip.
The views are great over a long portion of the hike. Depending on the weather, you may be exposed to sun and wind for the last few miles, so prepare accordingly.
This route to the summit didn't have a lot of hikers and was peaceful until you got to the summit of Cadillac. Other trails and the auto road to the summit brought crowds that made me want to get out ASAP. You can avoid most of the crowds by staying in the area where the trail reaches the summit. This was a wonderful hike!
We descended Dorr Mountain, crossed the Ravine and began our ascent of Cadillac through the rain and fog. Two of us were totally soaked by the time we reached the visitors center, in spite of proper rain gear. After warming up at the visitor’s center, we plunged back out into the fog and rain and battled our way down the South Ridge. This trail should not be attempted in the rain because of the bare rocky areas. The rain on the granite and mossy areas offer ankle-twisting traps for the less than cautious. A portion of our time was spent crawling along like crabs, in order to maintain footing without sliding down the steep banks. This is a wonderful trail during dry weather, a visual delight when the colored leaves fall.
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