Difficulty: Moderate. The Schoodic Mountain Trail (from the parking lot to Schoodic Mountain summit) is 1.3 miles one way. The Schoodic Beach Trail is 0.5 mile from the parking lot to the beach, and then 1 mile from the beach to the mountain summit.
How to get there: From US Route 1 in Sullivan, turn onto ME Route 183 (Tunk Lake Road) and proceed about 4.5 miles. Take a left onto the gravel Schoodic Beach Road (it is marked by a Donnell Pond Public Lands sign). Follow the Schoodic Beach Road for 2.3 miles to the end, where there is a parking area. Driving into the parking lot, the trailhead to the Schoodic Mountain Summit trail is on the left. The trailhead for Schoodic Beach Trail is at the far end of the parking lot by the kiosk.
Information: Schoodic Mountainis 1,069 feet tall with a bald summit that offers a panoramic view of the mountains of Acadia National Park, nearby ponds and lakes and the Atlantic Ocean. The trails up the mountain are located on the Donnell Pond Reserve, a 15,497-acre property owned and managed by the Maine Department of Conservation. The property includes most of Black Mountain, Caribou Mountain, Schoodic Mountain, Tunk Mountain and Fiery Mountain, and more than 40 miles of shoreline on Donnell Pond, Tunk Lake, Spring River Lake and Little Pond. Donnell Pond has two long sand beaches, one of which is Schoodic Beach.
The land was assembled in phases with the assistance of numerous conservation partners. Donnell Pond, Tunk Lake and Spring River Lake all have landlocked salmon fisheries. Hunting is also allowed, with restricted use of firearms near campsites, trails and boat launches. Several campsites, picnic tables and fire pits are located on Schoodic Beach. The reserve is open year round, and public access is free.
The Schoodic Mountain Trail (1.3 miles one way) travels through mossy woods scattered with boulders and across several streams before beginning a steep climb to the summit. The trail becomes increasingly rocky and open to the elements. At 0.9 miles, the trail crosses some open ledges and converges with the Schoodic Beach Trail. The trail then continues 0.4 miles to the summit. As trees become sparse, the blazes are replaced by cairns, which also mark the summit, along with a radio tower. The Schoodic Beach Trail is 0.5-mile wide, easy trail from the parking lot to the beach. This short, easy trail is acceptable for families with small children. From the beach, the trail climbs steeply to the summit, converging with the Schoodic Mountain Trail. For a trail map, visit www.maine.gov/doc/parks/maps/donnellpond.pdf. For information, call the Eastern Public Lands Office at 207-941-4412.
Personal note: If hiking in the early spring, bring ice cleats. Shaded areas of the mountain may be covered in ice. The Schoodic Beach Trail keeps ice and snow longer than the Schoodic Mountain Trail. If looking for a trail with varied terrain, Schoodic Mountain is a great choice. In the summer, hikers can cool off in Schoodic Bay.