Jul 16, 2013

Easy to Moderate Hiking in Acadia National Park: Gorham Mountain Trail, Jordan Pond and Cadillac Mountain

If you missed my first post on Acadia, check it out here: 

We finished hiking Great Head Trail and connected to the Ocean Path. As its name suggests, this Path takes you along the shoreline for views of the sea, the park's green peninsulas and the rocky shorescape. 

Along the walk, we came upon Thunder Hole. It wasn't high tide at this time so we didn't get to see any big waves or hear the roar. 

Thunder Hole

Continuing on we saw more of the rocky shore and the trees that line the island.

We made our way to the Gorham Mountain Trailhead, but before that we saw plenty more interesting plant life.

Gorham Mountain Trail is rated moderate due to the elevation gain of 500 feet. We went off the main trail for 0.3 miles and took the slightly more difficult Cadillac Cliffs Trail. This trail meets up with the main trail but requires a climb up steep rocks and across iron rungs before you get there. It was fun to take this detour and do something a little more strenuous. 

Hiking Cadillac Cliffs Trail

From the top of Gorham Mountain, we had some rather gloomy views of the park on this cloudy day.

Gorham Mountain is actually one of the shortest mountains in Acadia, and since we were sticking to the non-difficult hikes, it was a fun climb.

We made our way back down from the mountain and to our car, which was still in the Sand Beach parking lot. From there, we drove south along the Ocean Path to Otter Cliff

Looking back from the Ocean Path

It was getting to be around mid-afternoon at this point, so we needed a snack! Good thing there is a little place called Jordan Pond House that serves up all the snacks you can want. We drove to Jordan Pond House and passed some Carriage Roads, which we did not have time to enjoy on this trip. They are used for carriage rides as well as biking. 

For my snack, I ordered some hot tea and one of their famous popovers with butter and jelly. It was so good. I was tempted to get a second one! 

When snack time was over, we took a stroll around Jordan Pond on the Jordan Pond Nature Trail. It was starting to get a little drizzly. There were very few people in the park this weekend, so that plus the weather gave us lots of opportunities to enjoy the natural beauty of the park on our own. 

Two mountains called The Bubbles are near Jordan Pond, and we got great views of them on this trail. 

The Bubbles

This bridge was also along our stroll. It felt like we were in our own private enchanted forest. 

Our last stop for the day, as the weather was getting really ugly at this point, was Cadillac Mountain. This is the only mountain that you can drive to the peak of. It is also the tallest mountain in the park. From this vantage point, we could see the many outlying islands surrounding Mount Desert Island despite the grey skies! 

That concluded our first day of hiking Acadia National Park. Stay tuned for the adventures from our second day!

Jordan Pond House
Park Loop Road
Bar Harbor, ME

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