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New connecting trail opens in Acadia on National Trails Day

From the Bangor Daily News
By Bill Trotter, BDN Staff
June 07, 2014

ACADIA NATIONAL PARK, Maine — A new trail connecting a park campground in Otter Creek to hiking trails on the south slope of Gorham Mountain had its ceremonial opening Saturday morning.

The premiere of the new Quarry Trail, part of which runs along the causeway where the Park Loop Road crosses Otter Cove, coincided with National Trails Day. The trail is about a mile long, with the causeway about halfway between the campground and the Gorham Mountain trailhead, where hikers can then access a network of trails that lead to Gorham and Champlain mountains, the Beehive, Huguenot Head and Great Head.

About 40 people attended the ribbon cutting ceremony, held under sunny skies just east of the causeway.

“We’re really grateful for the turnout,” David MacDonald, president of Friends of Acadia, said at the ceremony. “What could be better than dedicating a trail in Acadia National Park on National Trails Day?”

FOA helped fund the trail project.

It is the latest of several trails that have been constructed over the past decade that connect residential villages on Mount Desert Island to the park’s hiking trails, allowing many park visitors to access the park without needing to drive vehicles into the park from their homes or other places of nearby lodging.

Last year, MacDonald noted, Friends of Acadia helped open a new community trail in Trenton outside the park. In 2012, it opened Duck Brook Trail, which connects Route 3 near College of the Atlantic with Paradise Hill Road and Duck Brook Road in the park.

Stephanie Clement, conservation director for FOA, said Saturday that officials with the nonprofit group hope to construct at some point a side trail off the Quarry Trail that will connect it directly to the village of Otter Creek, which is part of the town of Mount Desert.

Construction of Quarry Trail was funded in part through FOA’s Acadia Trails Forever endowment. About 200 volunteers, including some from the Acadia Youth Conservation Corps and many members of Friends of Acadia, spent about 1,000 man-hours — an average of five hours per person — helping National Park Service crews build the trail.

5 Responses to “New connecting trail opens in Acadia on National Trails Day”

  1. Andy Haynes

    I just visited MDI this past weekend. I wanted to pass along few observations. I’ve been visiting the island for about 30 years with my Mom, Dad, sister and now with my own family. It really is one of my favorite spots to be. I also worked at the Jordan Pond house for a few seasons not long after it was rebuilt. Things change over time and that’s ok but I thought when rebuilding things the Park Service would try their best to replicate what was there before. Two things I noticed this weekend are some boulders that were used to replace some rocks that made up one of the barriers beside a roadway. I think it was near the Caddilac Mt. entrance. The boulders were not of the same rough cut type that are everywhere else on the island. They looked out of place being round and not even the same type fo rock used as the others. I can’t imagine there isn’t a place on MDI that one couldn’t find an abandoned quarry, or hill side where you could create some of these. It’s a small thing but I just thought it looked odd. The other thing that strikes me is that the grand views along the Park Loop Road, especially along Eagle Lake and Jordan Pond are being obscured by trees. This was one of the most beautiful roads on the East Coast of the United States. The carriage trails too for that matter have a wall of trees obscuring what was intended by the designers of the paths to be grand and beautiful vistas. Why isn’t anyone selectively cutting some of these trees? I think I’m not the only who would like to get those views (and cool rock barriers) back!

  2. Ania Wieckowski

    Love the new trails! They made hiking from Blackwoods Campground so much easier. We were able to do Gorham and the Beehive and make it back to our campsite for lunch to plan the rest of our day–unheard of when we had to either drive or take the bus all the way around Park Loop Road to the trailhead. Thank you for everyone who worked to make these happen.

    • Aimee Beal Church

      Thanks for letting us know of your positive experience with the new trails! That’s exactly the sort of outcome that we and the Acadia trails crew hoped for.


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