Tag Archives: bar-island-trail

New Acadia National Park hiking group open to all

AT LOW TIDE ON THE SAND BAR TO BAR ISLAND – If not for their shared passion for Acadia National Park hiking trails, these very different people might never have met: A teacher, a ranger, a park volunteer, a personal trainer and a blogger.

acadia national park hiking

James Linnane, Shelley Dawson, Maureen Fournier, Acadia on My Mind and Kristy Sharp on the sand bar to Bar Island, where the new Acadia National Park Hiking group on Facebook was announced. (Photo courtesy of Kristy Sharp)

Here they were, hiking together as a group for the first time, on the sand bar to Bar Island, after an early breakfast at Jordan’s Restaurant in Bar Harbor.

Among nearly 300 people from around the world who’ve signed up for a free year-long 100-mile virtual Acadia Centennial Trek – where participants can log their hiking, biking or running miles wherever they are, and see their progress online on a map of Acadia – these 5 Acadia fans celebrated the park’s 100th anniversary in a special way on this low-tide hike last month.

To mark the occasion, the Acadia on My Mind blog, sponsor of the Trek as an official Acadia Centennial Partner, announced the creation of a new Acadia National Park Hiking group on Facebook, just as the 5 hikers neared the shore of Bar Island.

“What a good idea,” said James Linnane, volunteer crew leader for the Friends of Acadia, adding that he’s sometimes looking for someone to hike with on the spur of the moment, and that such a Facebook group could come in handy. Shelley Dawson (the teacher), Maureen Fournier (the ranger), and Kristy Sharp (the certified personal trainer) agreed.

acadia national park hiking

This photo of the Acadia Centennial Trek Medal, taken on the top of Cadillac, highlights the new Acadia National Park Hiking group page on Facebook. The medal can be purchased to help raise funds for Acadia, to mark any achievement, whether related to trekking Acadia or not.

Modeled on a couple of popular Facebook hiking groups for people hiking the 4000 footers of New Hampshire, with more than 9,000 members each, the Acadia National Park Hiking group is open to all. People can share trail conditions, hike suggestions, photos, videos and other information, whether they are veteran Acadia fans, or new to the park.

It can also be a central place for participants in the virtual 100-mile Acadia Centennial Trek to post their accomplishments, a photo of their optional finisher’s medal to help raise funds for the park, or to create an Acadia Centennial Trek meet-up for those who might want to hike some real Acadia trails together. Continue reading

Bar Island Trail one of a kind in Acadia National Park

One in a series of historic trail highlights leading up to the Acadia Centennial

The Bar Island Trail is one of a kind in Acadia National Park.

The wooded, rocky island can only be reached at low tide each day, starting at a sand bar that begins at the end of Bridge Street in Bar Harbor.

It’s great to walk along the ocean on the bar and then on the other side, ascend the trail through the woods on the island.

From a small hill on the island, people can get great views back to Bar Harbor and Acadia peaks. Along the way, a Porcupine Island rises from the ocean horizon.

The catch is that Bar Island can be reached just 1.5 hours on either side of low tide.

Strange enough, cars are allowed to drive on the bar, even though it’s less than a half mile long. Some people break a rule, park their car and leave it behind for a walk on the island.

cruise ship acadia national park

A view from Bar Island puts into perspective one of the many cruise ships visiting Bar Harbor.

A prominent sign on Bar Island’s shore warns people that the tide rises quickly, but inevitably an inexperienced few lose track of time and find themselves stranded on the island when the tide comes in and washes over the sand bar.

It seems like a summer never passes without stories about swamped cars or people needing to be rescued from Bar Island at high tide.

The mishaps are hard to understand but they are as sure as the tides themselves on Bar Island. Continue reading