Precipice Trail

HARD 231 reviews
#3 of 132 trails in

Precipice Trail is a 1.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Bar Harbor, Maine that features beautiful wild flowers and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from August until March.

DISTANCE
1.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
941 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

birding

hiking

nature trips

rock climbing

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

scramble

no dogs

The trail is closed between March 15 and August 15 due to falcon nesting. The Precipice Trail is a difficult and very steep out and back (or loop) trail using iron rungs and ladders on exposed cliffs providing spectacular views of Acadia National Park. The trail opens after nesting Peregrine Falcons leave the nest. The hike is not recommended during wet conditions, or if you experience vertigo; also not recommended for small children.The trail starts up steps and through some boulder scrambles. While officially a non-technical hike due to strategically placed iron rungs, ladders and rock ledges, this is really a climb that requires you to be able to navigate some tricky spots by pulling yourself up (e.g. the very first example of this might even be the hardest). If you are careful and pay attention, this will be a great and thrilling experience. Leave hiking poles behind, as you won't need them and they'll just get in the way. One of the very best short hikes in Acadia, similar to what you get on Katahdin's Knife Edge.

rock climbing
2 minutes ago

A hike that is more like a climb. Great during the dry seasons, before the snow and ice hit. I don’t believe this trail would be possible to complete in rain, snow, or extreme wind.

Technical skills not required, but willingness to climb some scary-looking spots is key!

hiking
15 days ago

Pretty short hike with breathtaking views along the way. There are steep drops along the way with a fair amount of exposure. I did not think it was too scary, but people who are scared of heights might want to take it slow on this hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Favorite hike in Acadia!’

1 month ago

amazing

1 month ago

Love this trail! It’s like a jungle gym on steroids. Sadly, the day we did it was foggy so not much view, but we still loved it.

hiking
2 months ago

Best hike, climb in the park, well maintained , might want to be in shape to reduce risk, good photo ops

hiking
3 months ago

Don’t even consider doing this trail unless you have hiking boots or heavy sneakers. Not for young kids. It is fantastic though.

3 months ago

crazy sketchy if you don't like heights but amazing views! take North ridge down.

hiking
3 months ago

Excellent hike with lots of steep climbing. Bring plenty of water!

3 months ago

This is the best hike.. so far I have done.. loved it .. will do it again.. it’s tough and challenging at some parts during the course ..

3 months ago

Yesterday I did it with my friends! It is definitely my favorite trail in Acadia! It is very challenging but doable as long as you are not afraid of height and weather cooperates.

4 months ago

Great views but absolutely terrifying! It is basically climbing a ladder the whole way up a sheer cliff and death is just a sneeze away.

hiking
4 months ago

Did this with my family. Loved it. My 12 year old enjoyed it more than Beehive. Definitely our best trail. Acadia did a great job maintaining the trails.

hiking
4 months ago

Extremely awesome hike with tons of climbing and rock scrambling, I didn't think it required much upper body strength, just more of balance and proper footing and you would be using your leg muscles more than anything else. As much as I would have wanted to try the trail as an in-out hike, it started getting really crowded with people coming up so I decided to do the blade & orange trail loop back to the parking lot. Which ended up being more of a rollercoaster with constant stairs up then rock scrambling down over and over heh...

hiking
4 months ago

This trail requires your upper body strength more than the others. Very excited to climb all those rungs, literally crawled the rocks up. The view was nice. But if you come for the view, Beehive and Penobscot are better.

hiking
4 months ago

Favorite hike in New England. Rebar ladders and rock scrambles made the hike so interesting. And the view at the top is one of the best ones in the park.

4 months ago

I loved this trail, it was such a rush!!
It was challenging though. At first, I didn't realize what I'd gotten myself into because it's a steep climb on exposed cliffs (and you're using iron rungs to pull yourself up) but I enjoyed all of it. I would not recommend this to anyone who is scared of heights.
The trail took me about 90 min to climb to the top and then I took Champlain North Ridge Trail to the Orange and Black Path that lead me back to the bottom.. I continued on the road until I made a complete loop back to my car.

hiking
4 months ago

Not for the faint of heart, but a lot of fun and a great workout.

hiking
4 months ago

Awesome trail! Lots of scrambling and the majority of the summit trail you're navigating exposed cliffs and iron rungs, but feels pretty safe. Views are fantastic. Wouldn't recommend if you have a fear of heights and would try to hit this on less crowded days/times- it can get congested easily due to the nature of the climbing and narrow pathway. My favorite trail in Acadia.

hiking
4 months ago

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