Cadillac North Ridge Trail

MODERATE 260 reviews
#3 of 133 trails in

Cadillac North Ridge Trail is a 4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Bar Harbor, Maine that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
4.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1118 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

2 months ago

Hiked this in 9/2016. Amazing views all the way up. Worth the effort.

hiking
5 months ago

Hiked this trail in May 2015. One of the most memorable hikes on the East Coast. Beehive is another moderate but exciting trail for those who are not afraid of night or cliffs and in fairly good shape. This trail is longer but easier with amazing views!

hiking
5 months ago

Last hiked it on May 14, 1994. What can I saw that has not already been said by many visitors about this spectacular hike?

hiking
6 months ago

Enjoyed ourselves immensely. Could not of asked for better Maine-iac weather. Fog thicker than a wall, in 60mph winds (warm for October) made us soaked but it was a truly different experience even without a view (had to make the best of, end of tropical storm Nate)

6 months ago

It's a must do for Acadia park, but found a number of other trails in the park that I enjoyed slightly more. It's a busy trail, with a lot of people at the summit. Great views!

hiking
6 months ago

Took bus to Cadillac North Ridge Trail head and 3 hrs later reached mtn top. Physically demanding but enjoyable hike for sixtyish couple , active walkers. Stopped at “false summit “ and hawks nest to watch ranger activity. Wonderful view from crowded summit, cars buses etc. Took west ridge trail down but this was a real accomplishment for us and beyond our experience level. Plan ahead or come back down on the north ridge.

6 months ago

Beautiful trail. Great views the whole time. If you want more of a challenge, also try the south ridge!

hiking
6 months ago

This hike was a good challenge, with beautiful views throughout. There's a place along the trail I would call a "fake summit", so don't be fooled. Once you reach that point you still have a ways to go to get to the top. Reaching the summit felt amazing, but it was really crowded with those who had driven up. The trail was well marked with blue blazes, as well as cairns and sometimes stone "walls" to help direct you in the right direction.

hiking
6 months ago

Great hike! Like someone else said, come prepared with sunscreen as most of the hike is exposed rock. I agree that the top with the tourists is not the calmest place to be, but the trail offers many opportunities to sit by yourself and enjoy the views.

6 months ago

Loved this trail.

6 months ago

The weather was not in my favor. It was a little damp and foggy when I set out to hike to the top. Nevertheless it was beautiful and brutal... brutal bc it felt much longer then I anticipated and the flat rock portions were slippery. With that being said, it is still one of my favorites and I would gladly do it all over again.

hiking
6 months ago

Good hike but don't expect peace and quiet up at the top.

7 months ago

As previously stated, this hike feels a bit longer than it's distance. Mostly rocky, descending it a bit tough on the knees and ankles. however, it's a fun hike, would definitely do again (hopefully with views not smothered by fog). wear sunscreen!

hiking
7 months ago

this was the hardest hike I've ever done. it is very steep, and gruelling. the ground is uneven, and you have no place to rest. it is all uphill, even the "flat" parts are very difficult.
there are nearly no views, it is crowded with many hikers. I did not see children on the trails.
the top had amazing views, but was crowded with tourists who drove to the top.

7 months ago

Beautiful hike, very rocky!

hiking
7 months ago

One of the best hikes in the park! We took just over an hour to get up to the top, made the views along the way and at the top that much sweeter.

7 months ago

Views at top are panoramic and spectacular. We are in our mid 60's. With hiking boots and a pair of trek poles, this was still strenuous and took over 2.5 hours to climb up and almost as much descending because it is so steep. There is some outright climbing, walking on rocks across water, and lots of walking on slabs of uneven rock. But at the top there is a paved semi circular walk that gives 270 degree panoramic views of the coastline. There is also a store with snacks, rest rooms, filtered water fill station.

8 months ago

hike was great except the parts that run along the road and the crowds of tourists at the top, even at sunset!

hiking
8 months ago

I hiked up Cadillac on Gorge Path and came down on North Ridge and had a blast on the way down. Saw many dogs and children along the way, and would say this trail is definitely a family friendly hike.

hiking
8 months ago

We hiked up Cadillac Mountain to watch the sunrise. The hike up took us 1 hr 10 mins (we started around 4 am; it was very dark and foggy so we could really only see a few feet ahead of us as illuminated by our headlamps) and the descent just under an hour. Despite a lot of fog, even at the top, the sun poked through and we had a lovely view of the sunrise. The ascent is moderate (not too steep) (we are 31).

hiking
8 months ago

Beautiful views-- lots of places to stop and take breaks and take in the scenery. Was steep at times, but certainly manageable. I saw people wearing sandals etc but I would recommend good shoes, my boots saved my ankles on the way down! A must do if you are in the area!!

hiking
8 months ago

Just hiked yesterday and drove to the top this morning for the sunrise. Beautiful views! It was a challenging climb but we saw people of all ages and lots of dogs able to complete it. We rested for a long time at the top just enjoying the view, and some blueberry soda which they sell in the gift shop.

8 months ago

Surprisingly challenging trail where you're navigating rocks the entire way. Our 18 month old golden retriever had had enough by the end! Bathrooms and water refills at the top.

hiking
8 months ago

This is a bit tougher than the climb and distance let's on; feels longer than 4 miles! Nonetheless, this is a rewarding ascent with some breathtaking views along the way. The trail can be a bit tough on your knees as you are constantly navigating over big rocks. bring sunscreen as there is limited cover.

hiking
8 months ago

This is a nice hike that is not steep but it is long. But it is worth going to the top. At the top there is a gift shop that sells food, soda, ice cream, t shirts, and other souveniers so bring some money. I did this when I was 11 so it is not that hard

8 months ago

We did the hike at 3:30am on August 10, 2017. Was an amazing hike. We brought headlamps and flash lights. By about 4:00 we didn't need to use them anymore. Got to the top at about 5:10. Sunrise was at 5:31am. Is said to be the first place the sun hits in the USA every morning. Was pretty awesome to experience!

hiking
8 months ago

Did this trail to see the sunrise at the top of Cadillac Mountain. Wasn't easy doing it in the dark, but giving myself a 2hr time frame worked! Wasn't heavily trafficked which was also nice! The trail marks were easily visible even with just a headlamp! I loved it!

8 months ago

I enjoyed this hike, the terrain was fun and changed a lot. There was some big rocks to climb, some smaller- there were some rooted areas and a lot of shade while hiking. I didn't go on a clear day, so I'll definitely do it again. If you're seeking a hike that's peaceful, this probably isn't the nature lovers route. It runs along the road that tour busses travel to bring tourists to the top. I found myself irritated that I was sucking up diesel fuel from traffic toward the top of the mountain, listening to traffic pass through. If you're looking for a get away in the woods to clear your head, it was heavily used trail- maybe the fall would be better time to go.

hiking
8 months ago

We hiked this trail the last weekend in July. No snacks were needed, since the path was lined with wild blueberries. The trail starts in shaded woods, then the trees thin out towards the summit, so you are walking in the sun but surrounded by breathtaking views. Quite a bit of the climb is over bare rock ledge, which had plenty of grip on a dry day. Rain just might make it a little slippery.
Trail is well marked with blue blazes and frequent rock cairns.
We started around 8:30 am and encountered very few other hikers, even though it was Sunday in peak visitor season. Seems that most people chose to drive up the auto road. Walking or driving, the vistas of the park and beyond are spectacular. Would definitely do it again. And again.

hiking
8 months ago

We loved this trail so much! Moderate is a pretty accurate ranking for the difficulty. The trail starts out with big boulders, nothing a young hiker couldn't climb up, but definitely a bit of an incline! As a hiker in my early twenties with my parents in their fifties, we were able to conquer this trail on the way up, and chose to take Gorge Trail down after stopping for the amazing views from the top! While Gorge was a stepper descent, if we did it again, we would follow the same route- North Ridge Cadillac on the way up- Gorge on the way down! Beautiful views, and definitely hike able- don't let the moderate level scare you away!

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