Trail Run Project Logo

blueBlack Champlain North Ridge Trail

Navigate on-trail with our free app

iOS App Store Android App Store

Trail

1.0 mile 1.6 kilometer point to point
58% Runnable
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 852' 260 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 1,049' 320 m
Low: 196' 60 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 16% (9°)
Max Grade: 38% (21°)

Dogs

Leashed
Driving directions Take a virtual tour
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

Trail shared by David Onkst

A steep and fairly open climb up Acadia’s easternmost ridge with distant views of the Atlantic.

David Onkst

Features Fall Colors · Views · Wildlife

Runner Notes

This path is runnable, although only experienced rock runners should attempt it.

Description

Originally called the Bear Brook Trail back in the late 1800s, this path was one of the area’s first trails; it even existed before Acadia became a national park. It is only 1.0 miles long, but it’s a fairly steep trail scaling roughly 900 feet from the mountain’s north parking lot to its summit.

The Champlain Ridge trails split into the north and south sections of the path at the top of the mountain. That’s where they intersect with the Beechcroft Path coming in from the northwest and the famous Precipice Trail joining up from the southeast. You can also hop onto the Orange & Black Path at only 0.4 miles into your journey, if you like. So you have a lot of options to extend your run by the time you’ve technically reached the “end” of this trail at the summit, should you not want to merely return to the parking lot. Notably, you can run this trail in either direction. It’s not nearly as steep and precarious as some of Champlain’s other trails, so it easily lends itself to 2-way traffic.

In essence, the run up the Champlain North Ridge alternates between covered and exposed areas. You’ll mainly navigate you way up and around granite and pines most of the way, and in the open areas, you’ll catch some glimpses of Frenchman Bay. Be sure to follow the carefully constructed cairns to guide you through the open areas, and ignore the extra rock piles that some have thoughtlessly placed along the way—those “false” cairns sometimes confuse runners. Then, when you finally summit, you’ll get some extensive views of the Atlantic, Schoodic Peninsula, the Porcupine Islands, and even Bar Harbor, not to mention several other classic and picturesque landmarks. Running this older trail offers some people a historic perspective about what the area’s early inhabitants and tourists might have felt and experienced when they were exploring Mount Desert Island long before Acadia became one of the national park system’s gems.

Flora & Fauna

Pines and granite.

Contacts

Rate This Trail

Rate Quality


   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Trail

Check In

Check-Ins

none

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 3 votes

#6190

Overall
  4.3 from 3 votes
5 Star
33%
4 Star
67%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#92

in Maine

#6,190

Overall
85 Views Last Month
1,860 Since Sep 1, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
0%
100%
0%
0%

0 Comments

Trail Run Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Running