From its rocky coastline to western mountains, Maine truly has it all. With numerous state parks, including the oldest national park east of the Mississippi, Maine’s wilderness is one you must explore on foot in your lifetime. From Acadia National Park, to Mount Katahdin, to Knife Edge Trail, take your pick. Here are our 15 favorite hiking trails in the Pine Tree State.
The Knife Edge Trail on Mount Katahdin, Maine’s tallest mountain, is not for the faint of heart. Knife Edge connects Pamola and Baxter Peak by a 1.1-mile trail of granite rocks surrounded on both sides by steep cliffs.
Old Speck Mountain, located in Grafton Notch, is a member of the 4,000-footer club in Maine. The Eyebrow trail is a 2.4-mile trail with about 1,100 feet elevation gain that offers a lot for hikers. From cable handrails to metal ladders and iron rungs, The Eyebrow is a steep climb, but offers rewarding views of the notch.
The Maine Appalachian Trail runs over 281 miles through western Maine to end at Mount Katahdin. While the longest portion of the trail and the highest peak is located outside of Maine, Maine is recognized as the toughest state. The trail boasts significant elevation gain and loss and extremely remote and rugged trails.
The Gorge Path is a lovely 3.8 round trip through the gorge between Dorr and Cadillac mountains. The trail crisscrosses across a small stream through the woods. The last half mile of the trail is steep, but the view from the top of Cadillac Mountain are like no other.
While most people prefer to reach the Sugarloaf summit by chairlift during the snowy winter months, the summit is worth a visit during the other three seasons by foot. Sugarloaf is Maine’s second highest mountain and the Appalachian Trail offers over 2,000 feet of elevation gain. The 6.4-mile trail is not for beginner hiker as the last three-quarter-of-a-mile section of the trail will kick your butt.
The Fire Warden Trail is a 4.6-mile trail to the Bigelow Col. From there it’s another 0.4 miles to either Avery Peak or the West Peak. The top of each peak offers wonderful views of Flagstaff Lake and is a great trail for weekend warriors.
One of the most popular trails on Pleasant Mountain, the Ledges Trail is offers lovely views of the valley below via its multiple scenic outlooks. The first half of the trail is gradual and builds to a slightly steeper trail. The Ledges Trail is great for kids and dogs.
Mount Battie Trail is a popular easy to moderate hiking trail for those who are visiting Camden. The trail is lightly trafficked and open to dogs on a leash. Spring and summer are the best times to hike as the trail features beautiful wild flowers.
Located just 40 minutes from Portland, Bradbury State Park is an 800-acre state park that boasts extensive walking, hiking, and biking trails. While the summit is only 500 feet high, it offers great views all Freeport and the Atlantic Ocean.
Burnt Meadow Mountain is a great day trip from Portland or North Conway, New Hampshire. The Burnt Meadow Trail is a 3.6-mile moderate trail. The trail starts easy, but the last section of the trail to the summit is a rock scramble.
Featured in a recent independent film of the same name, Tumbledown Mountain is a popular trail that features a pond on top. The 5.6-mile trail is a moderate hike with some difficult spots. The trail features a small cave with iron rungs near the summit.
Angel Falls is an easy 1.1-mile round trip trail with a total elevation gain of 200 feet. The trail leads to one of Maine’s most impressive waterfalls with a 90-foot “hanging” plunge.
Often closed due to peregrine falcon nesting, the Precipice Trail is one of the best trails in Acadia National Park. The trail is difficult and not suited to small children, but it is an exhilarating hike that will test your fear of heights.
One of the most popular hiking trails for all ages in Acadia National Park is The Beehive. The Beehive is a giant granite peak that overlooks Sand Beach and offers a thrilling climb. The Beehive is a classic Acadia must-do hike.
The Hunt Trail is one of the most popular trails to summit Mount Katahdin and it just happens to be the end of the Appalachian Trail. The Hunt Trail is a 5.2-mile one-way trail that gains over 4,000 feet to the summit. It offers extensive views of Baxter State Park and is a very strenuous climb.
Maine offers a wide variety of hiking trails for all ages and abilities. From coastal granite peaks that offer stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean to ancient mountain tops in the north, Maine has it all. It’s time to break out the hiking boots and hit the trails.